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Citing ‘particular cruelty,’ prosecutors seek longer prison sentence for Chauvin

Plus: Minneapolis 10-year-old in critical condition after being shot while sleeping; Minneapolis Mayor Frey apologizes to Coon Rapids woman whose home was mistakenly raided at the request of Minneapolis police; judge rejects attempt by priest of whites-only church in west-central Minnesota to silence critic; and more.

In the Pioneer Press, Katrina Pross writes: “Prosecutors asked a judge Friday to give Derek Chauvin a longer prison sentence for killing George Floyd, arguing that the crime was particularly cruel. Chauvin was found guilty of second-degree murder, third-degree murder and second-degree manslaughter for May 25 arrest death of Floyd.…Prosecutor Matthew Frank argued in a 26-page memorandum that an aggravated sentence is warranted because Floyd was a ‘particularly vulnerable victim’ and “treated with particular cruelty.’”

KARE 11’s Tyler Cashman and Danny Spewak report: “The Minneapolis Police Department says a juvenile male is in ‘very critical condition’ after he was shot within a vehicle near the 3400 block of Morgan Avenue North around 2 p.m. on Friday. In the interest of privacy, police are not at this time divulging the identity of the victim, however KARE 11’s Danny Spewak spoke with the family who mentioned the boy was only ten years old – and was shot while sleeping.”

Also from KARE 11, A.J. Lagoe and Steve Eckert report: “Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey says he apologized Friday to the Coon Rapids woman whose home was mistakenly raided by a SWAT team at the request of Minneapolis police. ‘This type of obvious breakdown in process and horrible mistake is unacceptable. Period,’ Frey said in a written statement. KARE 11 reported that Bianca Mathias and her 12-year-old daughter were held at gunpoint when authorities conducted a pre-dawn raid on their home in February – smashing through the front door and proceeding to bash in bedroom doors as they executed a no-knock warrant looking for an armed robbery suspect.”

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Also from the Pioneer Press, Deanna Weniger writes: “The Metropolitan Council this week said Ramsey and Hennepin counties should not be surprised to get a bill for their share of the Green Line’s light-rail operation. … [Wes Kooistra, Metro Transit’s general manager] said Metro Transit needs to be paid — and soon. For most of the last three quarters of 2020, the agency experienced ridership losses of approximately 65 percent for bus, 75 percent for light rail and 95 percent for commuter rail due to the pandemic.”

MPR’s Tim Pugmire says: “Gov. Tim Walz is praising a new online initiative aimed at helping Minnesota renters who have fallen behind on making payments due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Walz joined state and local officials in a news conference Friday to highlight the rental assistance program, which was launched a week and a half ago. So far, applications are coming in, but no payments have gone out, and a trade group representing rental property owners criticized the rollout of the online system. … The new emergency rental assistance program, called RentHelpMN, will make use of $375 million in COVID-19 relief money that Minnesota received from the federal government.”

In the Star Tribune, John Reinan writes: “A judge has rejected an attempt by the priest of a whites-only church to silence a critic who has spoken out against the arrival of the Asatru Folk Assembly (AFA) in Murdock, Minn. In her ruling, issued Thursday, Kandiyohi County District Judge Stephanie Beckman wrote that criticism of the controversial church is ‘a matter of public concern,’ and that critics were engaged in ‘education and outreach.’… The AFA, which allows only white members of European descent, has been identified by religious scholars as a white supremacist group. It has been denounced by other heathen religious groups for its views.”