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Chipotle reconsiders decision to fire St. Paul manager in wake of video

Plus: Minnesota man found dead in Utah reservoir; Ellison says he wants to restore morale in AG’s office; student from Eden Prairie wins Rhodes scholarship; and more.

The Star Tribune’s Mara Klecker writes: “Chipotle is reconsidering its decision to fire a St. Paul restaurant manager for not serving five black men and asking them to prove they could pay before taking their order last week. A video of the incident posted to Twitter by 21-year-old Masud Ali went viral, with Ali claiming the way he and friends were treated on Thursday night at the Grand Avenue eatery was racial stereo­typing. … In several other tweets, apparently posted by Ali between 2014 and 2016, he repeatedly joked about dining and dashing from Chipotle and other restaurants.”

WCCO’s Esme Murphy reports: “On WCCO Sunday Morning, [Keith] Ellison minimized the degree to which he will take on the president. ‘I didn’t run for attorney general to fight with Trump,’ Ellison said. ‘I may end up fighting with Trump, but my point is to protect Minnesotans. … .’ Ellison is also promising to restore morale to the office. Under current Attorney General Lori Swanson there were accusations that staff was required to do political work at taxpayers’ expense — accusations Swanson has denied.”

KSTP-TV reports: “A Minnesota man was found dead in a reservoir in Utah Saturday. According to the Wasatch County Sheriff’s Office in Utah, 24-year-old Benjamin Magalis of Goodhue, Minnesota, apparently drowned while canoeing near Chicken Creek West. His body was found in the Strawberry Reservoir. Twenty-six-year-old Chenoa Plank, a woman from Utah whom Magalis was reportedly camping with, was also found dead, the sheriff’s office said.”

Also in the Strib, Tim Harlow tells us, “Thick icicles drooping down from the ceiling created a cool sight for motorists driving through the Hwy. 5 tunnel, which passes under Hwys. 55 and 62 near Fort Snelling and the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. Drive reader Willi described the spectacle as being about a yard long and a few feet wide. He saw icicles hanging primarily over the eastbound lanes as he drove west on Hwy. 5. … Other motorists marveled at the frozen sight, too, but like Willi they were concerned that ice spikes could fall and damage vehicles passing below.”

In the Duluth News Tribune Pete Passi reports, “For years, Delta Airlines and its predecessor, Northwest Airlines, have dominated the Duluth air travel market. But United Airlines has made a big push and is narrowing its gap with Delta in Duluth. That increased competition benefits local travelers in very real ways and also is drawing greater interest to the market … . Through the first 10 months of this year, Delta has carried 57 percent of passengers flying scheduled service through Duluth International Airport, compared with 43 percent of of travelers using United.”

An AP story says, “A Yale University senior from Minnesota who lost his brother to a heroin overdose said Sunday he plans to use his Rhodes scholarship to focus on criminal drug policies. Riley Tillitt, 22, who’s from the Minneapolis suburb of Eden Prairie, said people suffering from drug addiction need to be treated with the compassion ‘that they need as a human being.’ ‘We treat it (drug addiction) as a criminal issue instead of a public health issue,’ said Tillitt, who said his brother and only sibling, Max, died of a heroin overdose in 2015 at age 22 when Riley was a college freshman. That attitude is leading to more people overdosing, Tillitt said.”

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Stribber Mara Klecker reports, “A woman from Two Harbors was injured Saturday when the vehicle she was driving rolled because of large boulders in the roadway on Hwy. 61 in Silver Creek Township, the State Patrol said. Sandra Jean Smith, 60, was driving a Honda Civic northbound at the Silver Cliff Tunnel just before 6:30 a.m. when large rocks from a rockslide caused the vehicle to roll, the patrol said. It was not immediately known when the rockslide occurred.”

For MPR, Andrew Krueger reports: “A longtime Minnesota candy maker has returned to local ownership, and has plans to invest in its St. Paul factory. Pearson Candy Co. — maker of Salted Nut Rolls, Nut Goodies, Mint Patties and Bit-O-Honey, among other products — is now owned by Minneapolis private equity firm Spell Capital Partners. The deal was finalized on Friday; for the past seven years Pearson had been owned by Connecticut-based Brynwood Partners. Pearson has been making candy for 109 years. Michael Keller, Pearson’s president and CEO, said the company will benefit from having local owners who know its decades-long history in Minnesota.”