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St. Paul teachers strike; district cancels classes

Plus: Second Minnesota coronavirus patient could have had contact with ‘as many as 20 people’; Wisconsin officials confirm second case of COVID-19; Freeman asks feds to review Myon Burrell case; and more.

In the Star Tribune, Anthony Lonetree writes: “St. Paul Public Schools classes are canceled today because of a teachers strike, the school district said early Tuesday morning. The district notified parents via Twitter at 3:30 a.m. The St. Paul Federation of Educators said in its own tweet that it would begin picketing at 7 a.m. Negotiators for the St. Paul Public Schools and the union representing its teachers continued to talk into the night Monday in hopes of averting a strike — the district’s first since 1946.”

In the Pioneer Press, Christopher Magan reports, “As many as 20 Minnesotans could have been in contact with the state’s second coronavirus patient before the person knew they were infected with COVID-19. Minnesota Department of Health officials are working to identify everyone a Carver County resident was in contact with before testing positive Sunday for the coronavirus. Officials say any of those contacts who are at serious risk of developing the virus will be asked to isolate themselves for two weeks, the incubation period of the virus.”

The AP reports: “The Minnesota Senate voted 64-0 Monday to earmark $21 million to reinforce the state’s response to the coronavirus outbreak, while the House followed suit hours later on a vote of 133-0. The bill could be on the desk of Gov. Tim Walz tonight if the Senate votes to re-pass the bill with some changes made by the House.”

In the Star Tribune, Brooks Johnson and Paul Walsh write: “A Cloquet man is in jail for the suspected murder of a 27-year-old woman and her 18-month-old son on the Fond du Lac Reservation over the weekend. Authorities on Sunday arrested Sheldon J. Thompson, 33, after a daylong search. He is being held on suspicion of second-degree murder. The victims were found Saturday afternoon at a Cloquet home on the 1600 block of Locke Lane. The Cloquet Police Department said the suspect and victims ‘had a relationship or otherwise knew each other.’”

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MPR reports: “Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman has requested that the U.S. Department of Justice revisit the case of Myon Burrell, a Minnesota teen sentenced to life after an 11-year-old girl was killed by a stray bullet. The county attorney’s office said on Monday that it has asked Sen. Amy Klobuchar, who led the case’s prosecution 11 years ago, to request a review by the Justice Department of Burrell’s conviction. Freeman’s office said in a press release that the federal agency would have the resources to revisit the case with thousands of pages of documents as well as videos for evidence.”

This from WISN-TV in Wisconsin. “Wisconsin health officials say they have confirmed a second case of coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, in the state. According to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services and the Pierce County Public Health Department, the person was exposed while traveling in the U.S. The patient is now isolated at home.”

This from Mara Gottfried in the Pioneer Press, “Police arrested a woman on Monday after she allegedly dragged her 11-year-old son from his bunkbed and threw him off the balcony of their fourth-floor St. Paul apartment, leaving him seriously injured. Investigators interviewed the 33-year-old mother on Monday, and ‘she admitted to doing it, but she did not tell them why,’ said Steve Linders, a St. Paul police spokesman. The investigation remains underway.”

For MPR, Dan Gunderson says, “During the winter months, Jacob Swedberg spends about half of his working hours walking across the 30 ice-covered lakes around Detroit Lakes, making sure anglers have a license and are following the rules. Swedberg is a conservation officer with the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources. … Swedberg’s job is to enforce the laws that protect Minnesota’s natural resources, but the work is unlike that of most other law enforcement agencies: Conservation officers have wide discretion when it comes to issuing warnings or citations. And much of the time, they choose education rather than punishment as a means to enforce the law.”