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Former Minneapolis police officer Noor could be eligible for supervised release by end of year

Plus: chief executives of Securian Financial and Ecolab urge Carter to take a bolder stand against crime in St. Paul; Minneapolis 2040 plan hotly debated in some council races; acclaimed young adult literature writer Gary Paulsen dies; and more.

Mohamed Noor
Mohamed Noor
REUTERS/Adam Bettcher

For the AP, Amy Forliti reports, “Attorneys for the former Minneapolis police officer who fatally shot a woman who called 911 to report a possible rape behind her home are asking a judge to sentence him to 41 months on a manslaughter charge, the lightest penalty recommended under state sentencing guidelines, according to documents filed Thursday. … If [Mohamed] Noor receives the presumptive four years for manslaughter, he could be eligible for supervised release around the end of this year. If the judge agrees with the defense and sentences Noor to 41 months, his release could be imminent.”

In the Pioneer Press, Frederick Melo and Shannon Brault write: “Following the deadly shooting at the Seventh Street Truck Park bar last weekend, the chief executive officers of Securian Financial and Ecolab are urging St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter to take a bolder stand against crime, especially downtown. ‘The city of St. Paul is hurting,’ Ecolab CEO Christophe Beck wrote in a letter to the mayor on Tuesday. Christopher Hilger, chairman, president and CEO of Securian Financial, implied that without a stronger response from the city, Securian — the city’s largest private downtown employer — might not ask its employees to return from working remotely. … Securian sent copies of Hilger’s letter to members of the St. Paul City Council and Police Chief Todd Axtell.”

Says Melissa Turtinen for BringMeTheNews, “The Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) has released its Midwest Regional Rail Plan to expand intercity passenger rail in the Midwest over the next 40 years. The FRA released the 198-page plan on Wednesday, which would create four ‘pillar’ routes out of Chicago. The largest would be the Chicago-Minneapolis-St. Paul ‘core express’ trains with 24 trips per day.”

In the Star Tribune, Kellly Smith says, “Minneapolis’ controversial 2040 comprehensive plan isn’t on the Nov. 2 ballot, but reaction to the plan and debate over how the city can bolster affordable housing are still hotly contested in south Minneapolis elections. City Council Members Jeremy Schroeder, Andrew Johnson and Linea Palmisano represent the southernmost wards in the city and face competition from a total of 10 challengers with varied views on housing and police reform, among other key issues.”

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Writes Paul Walsh for the Star Tribune, “A 21-year-old man was driving with a suspended license and may have been under the influence of drugs when he went through a red light before he struck and killed a woman on her motorized scooter in a north Minneapolis crosswalk, according to a criminal complaint filed Thursday. … Court records show that in slightly more than three years Bendson has been convicted three times for theft, twice for motor vehicle registration violations, and once each for drug possession, fleeing police, indecent exposure and driving after his license was revoked.”

Also in the Pioneer Press, Mary Ann Grossmann writes: “Book lovers attending Saturday’s Twin Cities Book Festival at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds will see a tribute to popular and bestselling author Gary Paulsen at the Red Balloon Bookshop booth where Paulsen’s classic ‘Hatchet’ and his other young adult books will be displayed. Paulsen, who was born in Minneapolis, was 82 when he died Wednesday at his home in Tularosa, N.M. The New York Times, citing family, said the cause was cardiac arrest. … Paulsen was one of the most honored writers of contemporary literature for young people, praised for his clear prose and exciting tales of adventure such as ‘Hatchet,’ a 1986 novel about a boy who survives a plane crash and learns to survive challenges of nature. It has sold more than 4.5 million copies.”

At KSTP-TV, Eric Chaloux reports, “Robots created by researchers at the University of Minnesota-Duluth will soon start working in nursing homes in the state. ‘This is like the first time in the United States using humanoid robots to provide care for the elderly,’ said Dr. Arshia Khan, professor at Swenson College of Science and Engineering at UMD. The robots come in various sizes and are programmed to help residents in care centers with their emotional, physical and cognitive health.”

Ava Ewald writes for MPR: “Gladys, the Minnesota Zoo’s Eurasian eagle owl who went missing since flying away from the Minnesota Zoo, was found injured and died before receiving treatment. The owl flew away into a tree during a routine training session earlier this month. Zoo staff searched for Gladys and predicted she was somewhere within the zoo. Gladys was found injured on the side of a road Thursday morning but died before zoo staff could treat her.”

In The Atlantic, McCay Coppins writes about Pioneer Press owner Alden Global Capital: “What threatens local newspapers now is not just digital disruption or abstract market forces. They’re being targeted by investors who have figured out how to get rich by strip-mining local-news outfits. The model is simple: Gut the staff, sell the real estate, jack up subscription prices, and wring as much cash as possible out of the enterprise until eventually enough readers cancel their subscriptions that the paper folds, or is reduced to a desiccated husk of its former self. The men who devised this model are Randall Smith and Heath Freeman, the co-founders of Alden Global Capital. Since they bought their first newspapers a decade ago, no one has been more mercenary or less interested in pretending to care about their publications’ long-term health. Researchers at the University of North Carolina found that Alden-owned newspapers have cut their staff at twice the rate of their competitors; not coincidentally, circulation has fallen faster too … .”

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