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Tornado wipes out southern Minnesota town

Plus: Minneapolis schools say new contracts will require cuts; Maplewood PD releases body cam footage of officers handcuffing and detaining four children; Republican gubernatorial candidate Rich Stanek hospitalized after car crash; and more.

In the Star Tribune, Tim Harlow and Trey Mewes write of Taopi, Minnesota: “This small farming town of about 80 people is now a demolition zone. Soggy debris covers much of the five-block area that makes up the community that was devastated by a tornado Tuesday night. Half of the homes are gone. Tall trees stand no more. … A tornado with winds of more than 111 mph struck this southeastern Minnesota town near the Iowa border after dark Tuesday, leveling buildings, snapping power poles and leaving piles of debris covering Main Street.

Also in the Star Tribune, Mara Klecker writes: Minneapolis Public Schools officials said Wednesday that new contracts with teachers and education support professionals would cost an additional $80 million over two years, widening a projected budget gap and forcing cuts in the coming school year. …The price, revealed at a school board finance committee meeting Wednesday, would be an extra $53.1 million for the current school year and an additional $27.1 million in the 2022-23 school year.”

Nick Woltman writes in the Pioneer Press: “The Maplewood Police Department on Wednesday night released body camera footage of its officers handcuffing and detaining four children as they investigated a report of gunshots earlier this week. The video, which is about 46 minutes long, was recorded by the body-worn camera of the officer who first interacted with the kids shortly after 9:30 p.m. Monday and continues for the entire length of the encounter… After talking with the kids for a little over 20 minutes, the officers handcuffed the youths and placed them in the back seats of squad vehicles, where they remained for roughly 20 minutes more until they were released, the video shows.”

Related. From Matt Sepic at MPR: “The parents of four children handcuffed and made to wait in squad cars this week say they want an apology from Maplewood police. … Speaking Tuesday, Maplewood Police Lieutenant Joe Steiner said officers acted professionally. ‘We’re proud of their response and their work on this incident and released the children about 40 minutes after determining they were not involved,’ he said.”

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Mara H. Gottfried reports in the Pioneer Press: “Republican gubernatorial candidate Rich Stanek is hospitalized after a crash in Buffalo, Minn., though he wasn’t seriously injured and is looking forward to getting back on the campaign trail, his spokesman said Wednesday. Stanek was leaving Buffalo Covenant Church on Tuesday at 8:30 p.m. after speaking to a Wright County conservative group. He drove his pickup truck east out of the church parking lot at Minnesota 25 and Catlin Street, and collided with a car that was northbound on Highway 25, according to a Minnesota State Patrol report.”

Also in the Pioneer Press, Josh Verges writes:A Wisconsin woman with ties to a St. Paul charter school was charged Wednesday with securities fraud for allegedly defrauding Hmong-American investors in Minnesota, Wisconsin and six other states. Kay Yang, 40, raised at least $16.5 million from around 70 investors between April 2017 and April 2021, according to a civil complaint filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission in U.S. District Court in Wisconsin. Today, almost nothing is left.”

For the Star Tribune, Joy Summers and Nicole Hvidsten write, “The most popular sandwich pop-up of the pandemic has found a full-time home. Marty’s Deli will open at 400 Lowry Av. NE. in Minneapolis. The restaurant is the work of Martha ‘Marty’ Polacek, who has been popping up around town with her focaccia-based sandwiches since November 2020. The new shop will remain, like the pop-ups, intentionally small for now, with 15 to 20 seats. There’s no opening date yet, but construction updates will be posted regularly to Marty’s Deli’s Instagram page.”

This from Adam Uren at Bring Me The News, “Popular home improvement channel HGTV has announced six new series coming to television screens, and one of them is set in Minneapolis. The Discovery-owned channel announced that among the shows added to its 2022-23 programming slate is Renovation 911. … ‘Renovation 911 will follow emergency restoration experts and sisters, Kirsten Meehan and Lindsey Uselding, as they rescue homes in Minneapolis that have recently experienced unexpected and tragic property disasters.’”