Nonprofit, independent journalism. Supported by readers.


Nine-year-old dies 12 days after being shot while playing in Minneapolis

Plus: Republican gubernatorial candidate Jensen part of effort to stop youth vaccinations; St. Paul Mayor Carter delivers annual ‘State of the City’ address; Memorial Day weekend expected to see huge surge in travelers; and more.

police tapes
Photo by David von Diemar on Unsplash

FOX 9 reports: “A nine-year-old girl who was shot in the head in north Minneapolis, has passed away from her injuries, family members told FOX 9. Trinity Ottoson-Smith had been hospitalized for nearly two weeks. ‘For the last 12 days, she fought for her life and today that fight ended,’ said Minneapolis police spokesman John Elder. “At 4:04 p.m. she was pronounced deceased at the hospital.’ Trinity was one of three children who were shot in the head in north Minneapolis within weeks of one another. On May 15, Trinity was jumping on a trampoline at a friend’s birthday party with other children when she was struck by a bullet in the 2200 block of Ilion Avenue North. Since then, she had been in critical condition at North Memorial Health Hospital.”

In the Pioneer Press, Dave Orrick writes: “Scott Jensen, a prominent Minnesota Republican candidate for governor with a track record of COVID-19 theories not shared by the medical community, has signed onto an effort to stop vaccinations for 12- to 16-year-olds. Jensen, a family physician from Chaska who served in the state Senate from 2017 to 2021, is the first named plaintiff in a petition filed in federal court in Alabama by America’s Frontline Doctors, a group that has attempted to diminish the pandemic that has killed more than 590,000 Americans and pushed misleading and false information about the coronavirus, its lethality and debunked treatments and preventions, such as the use of hydroxychloroquine.”

Also in the Star Tribune, Liz Navratil writes: Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey and some of his biggest critics on the City Council came together Thursday to announce a new violence-prevention effort on the North Side. While the details of funding for the deployment of unarmed “community safety specialists” are still being nailed down, the presence of Frey and Council Members Jeremiah Ellison, Steve Fletcher and Lisa Goodman together was a departure from the divisions on display last week. Escalating violence in the city — including the recent shootings of three children on the North Side — has challenged city leaders to find a way to stop the bloodshed while fulfilling a promise to transform public safety in the wake of George Floyd’s death.

Also in the Pioneer Press, Frederick Melo writes: “St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter delivered his annual ‘State of the City’ address Thursday, taking a wide-ranging look at the challenges facing the capital city 14 months into the pandemic and a year after riots rocked the Midway following the killing of George Floyd. Carter mostly focused on projects just getting underway before COVID, such as the ‘Family First Housing’ pilot project, college savings accounts for newborns and the work of the Office of Financial Empowerment, as well as the Community First Public Safety Commission, which recently delivered a 419-page report on how to restructure emergency response to low-level 911 calls..”

Article continues after advertisement

An AP story says, “The U.S. Department of Agriculture has declined a request by the pork industry to increase the speed at which pigs can be processed into meat, delivering a victory to slaughterhouse workers who had raised safety concerns about the plan. The USDA announced Wednesday evening it would enforce a Minnesota judge’s order issued in March. The judge struck down plans begun years ago but finalized by the USDA under former President Donald Trump’s administration that would have lifted maximum line speeds at pork slaughterhouses, allowing dozens of plants to speed up production.”

Also in the Star Tribune, Janet Moore writes: “Some 37 million Americans, many of them vaccinated and weary of being cooped up as the COVID-19 pandemic ebbs, are taking to the roads, rails and skies this holiday weekend — the unofficial start of summer. … In the seven-state Midwestern region, which includes Minnesota, nearly 3 million people will travel 50 miles or more between Thursday and Monday, a 56% surge over last year, according to AAA. ‘We are seeing an increased desire for travel as consumers grow more comfortable with the vaccine, both in its large-scale rollout and in the protection it provides individually,’ said Meredith Mitts, public affairs specialist for AAA.”

In the Duluth News Tribune, Peter Passi says, “The Minnesota Court of Appeals decided Monday to uphold a district court’s decision to dismiss a case brought by Steven Bystedt and Carrie Heikkila against the city of Duluth. The couple alleged that by allowing an 11-story office building with a public parking ramp to be built across the alley from their condominium at 414 W. First St., the city had eroded the value of their property. Among other things, they claimed the project had deprived them of their harbor view, privacy and natural light. The plaintiffs also claimed the new office building resulted in increased alleyway traffic, noise, fumes and artificial light pollution.”

The Star Tribune’s Paul Walsh reports, “Friends and family remembered with fondness and sorrow a well-known figure among Minneapolis skateboarders whose body was recovered from the Mississippi River on Tuesday, more than three weeks after he fell into the water while trying to leave his ‘KGOD’ moniker on the Stone Arch Bridge. The Hennepin County Water Patrol launched near St. Anthony lock and dam and made the recovery, said the Sheriff’s Office. … Those closest to 27-year-old Kyle Alexander remembered him Thursday as a devoted South Sider who was a constant and smiling presence with a board at Elliot Park just south of downtown. Alexander was with others on the Stone Arch Bridge on May 1 when ‘he climbed over the fence to go down to a different level’ and fell in, said his mother, Mary Alexander.”

Article continues after advertisement