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Hundreds gather in St. Paul to discuss recent violence

KSTP-TV reports: “Hundreds of people gathered at Central Baptist Church on Thursday night to discuss recent violence in St. Paul. ‘We come into this space right now, I know, with heavy hearts,’ said Mayor Melvin Carter, as he opened the meeting. He told the community members who gathered that a new approach is needed and asked them to help develop it. He said the police cannot combat the violence on their own. … Mayor Carter and Police Chief Todd Axtell listened as the groups talked about what has caused the recent violence. Twenty-eight people have been killed in the city so far this year, the highest number since 1996.”

At MPR, Brandt Williams and Tarkor Zehn report, “St. Paul Police Chief Todd Axtell bemoaned the high number of gun-related killings this year. Nearly 90 percent of homicides to date this year — 26 of the 29 — involved firearms. In one of the fatal shootings, a St. Paul police officer shot and killed Ronald Davis. The number of shooting deaths and the frequency at which guns, mostly handguns, have been used to kill are the highest in nearly 30 years. FBI data show the previous high mark for the number of handgun-related killings in St. Paul was 18, back in 1995.”

From the Star Tribune’s Libor Jany, “Reported crime has edged up in Minneapolis so far this year, leaving city officials, police and community leaders to wonder whether the increase is an aberration or a sign of a major crime trend in the state’s largest city. The nearly 13% jump in violent crime mirrors a similar trend across the river in St. Paul, where law enforcement officials are scrambling to quell a recent spate of violence.”

Says Hannah Jones at City Pages, “Minneapolis’ winding, tree-lined Tangletown neighborhood was all set to get a new 23-unit apartment building: Fullertown Flats. It was supposed to be four stories, located right by Fuller Park, with a mix of 14 studios, six one-bedrooms, and three two-bedrooms, according to Southwest Journal. Rent for one of those studios would fall somewhere between $1,200 and $1,400, and it would be just a hop, skip, and a jump from a number of bus stops. But there was one big problem, according to some Tangletown residents. The developer on the project, Urban Cycle co-founder Joshua Segal, requested a variance that would allow him to provide only 10 parking spots for the building instead of the standard one per unit. It was allegedly an attempt to make the building more affordable and greener, and to target tenants who would rely less on driving. Neighbors, however, aren’t persuaded.”

In the Duluth News Tribune, Peter Passi writes, “Plans to bring a Costco store to Duluth will head to the city’s Planning Commission Tuesday, and documents shared with commissioners this week provide more details about the proposed project. TJ Design Strategies, an Illinois-based developer that has worked with Costco to build other Midwestern stores, submitted plans to construct a 161,226-square-foot retail warehouse for Costco at the corner of West Arrowhead Road and Haines Road.”

A Star Tribune story says, “A 75-year-old man is hospitalized in grave condition after an assault following an altercation on a Metro Transit bus near the intersection of Chicago Avenue and Lake Street. Minneapolis police were called at 2:39 p.m. Wednesday to the 2900 block of Chicago Avenue, where they came upon the victim and spoke with witnesses, who said the victim became involved in a verbal exchange on the bus. When the victim got off the bus, a suspect and three others followed the him. After another altercation, the suspect, believed to be in his 20s, struck the older man, causing him to fall and strike his head.”

Matt Sepic at MPR says, “Twin Cities Muslim leaders are calling for hate crime charges after a Somali-American man was allegedly attacked in a Minneapolis suburb last week. Forty-nine-year-old Haarun Galbayte, of Eden Prairie, said on Oct. 27, he made a morning food delivery at a home in Excelsior and returned to his car. As he was about to drive away, a man came out, punched him several times in the head while yelling at him to go back to his country.”

Nicole Norfleet writes for the Star Tribune: “A Chicago investment firm has purchased Calhoun Square and an adjacent vacant lot in Uptown’s busy retail district for $34.5 million, half of the more than $69 million the shopping center sold for five years ago. … Northpond Partners, which purchased the site from Minneapolis-based the Ackerberg Group last week, plans to make “significant changes” to Calhoun Square after some research and consultation with residents, said Sam Ankin, managing principal of Northpond Partners.”

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