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State to add 16 EV charging stations along I-94, I-35

Plus: Matt Birk tones down his Twitter presence; large fight breaks out at Edina football game; Coon Rapids man charged with threatening a U.S. senator; and more.

Last September, Gov. Tim Walz announced his administration intended to adopt California’s standards for low-emission vehicles and zero-emission vehicles.
REUTERS/William DeShazer

At KMSP-TV Theo Keith says, “Minnesota transportation officials are moving ahead with their build-out of an electric vehicle charging network after winning federal approval this month. Minnesota stands to get $68 million over five years from the 2021 federal infrastructure law. In the first phase, state Department of Transportation officials expect to install a total of 16 charging stations along interstates 94 and 35 by the end of 2024.”

At William Bornhoft writes, “Republican candidate for lieutenant governor Matt Birk has dialed down his typically boisterous Twitter presence following his gag about meeting with Gov. Tim Walz. Birk’s ‘Walz’ troll was just one in a series of sarcastic and testy tweets in early September. … Birk was trolling his followers. Birk just went golfing with Wes Walz, a former member of the Minnesota Wild. Since that ‘Walz’ gag, Birk’s Twitter presence has become far more muted, consisting of retweets of Jensen and standard campaign points. He had no immediate response, snarky or otherwise, about a Star Tribune poll published Sunday that showed him and Jensen down 7 points.”

Says Dana Thiede of KARE-TV, “A delivery driver is among the latest victims of the gun violence that continues to plague the city of Minneapolis.  Police say the incident happened around 10:15 p.m. Saturday on the 5400 block of Nokomis Ave. S following what they call a ‘failed delivery.’ The driver, a man in his 30s, was attempting to leave the address when two men approached, one of them holding a gun. … The victim attempted to drive away, and police spokesman Officer Garrett Parten says the man with the gun fired several shots, striking the driver and his vehicle. The driver was able to make his way to a safe location where he called 911.”

Another KARE story, this by Lou Raguse says, “Three teens were arrested at the Edina High School homecoming football game Friday night after a large fight broke out, requiring Edina Police to call in officers from Richfield, St. Louis Park and Bloomington for help. … A large group of between 15 and 30 teens entered the athletic complex after halftime of the game and began fighting, according to Edina Police Lt. Dave Venne. No one was seriously injured, and none of the agitators appeared to have a weapon, Venne said. The incident caused a chaotic scene, with many parents and volunteers attending the game attempting to step in and help the officers, Lt. Venne confirmed.”

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Stribber Paul Walsh reports, “A federal grand jury indictment alleges that a Coon Rapids man made violent threats against a U.S. senator. Brendon Michael Daugherty, 35, appeared Friday in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis on charges of threatening to murder a United States official and interstate transmission of a threat. Public court records do not identify the target of Daugherty’s alleged threats other than to say the senator is not from Minnesota. Daugherty remains in federal custody without bail in the Sherburne County jail. He’s due back in court on Tuesday.”

At KSTP-TV Josh Skluzacek says, “A Minnesota-based medical cannabis company is suing the state over its THC regulations, claiming discrimination. Last week, Vireo Health filed a civil lawsuit against the Minnesota Department of Health, the state and several county attorneys, saying Minnesota’s THC laws discriminate against Vireo. Vireo is one of two companies MDH has authorized to distribute medical cannabis in the state. Among the products they’re able to distribute under the program are THC-infused edibles.”

Also at KSTP Eric Chaloux reports, “A former high-ranking Minnesota National Guardsman who was discharged under controversy is now convicted of a crime. On Friday, a Hennepin County jury found 48-year-old Michael D. Pazdernik guilty on one of two criminal sexual conduct charges that he faced involving a minor in the southwest metro from a reported incident before 2017. Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office records Monday afternoon show Pazdernik is being held without bond in a Minneapolis jail awaiting sentencing. The judge overseeing the case ordered a sex offender evaluation for Pazdernik ahead of sentencing in the case.”

For MPR News, Matt Sepic says, “A federal judge in St. Paul is allowing a voting machine company to proceed with its defamation suit against Minnesota businessman and MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell. … In her order denying MyPillow and Lindell’s motions to dismiss the suit, Judge Wilhelmina Wright said Smartmatic had alleged facts ‘sufficient to suggest that Lindell knew or should have known that his statements were false and [he] acted with actual malice.’ In court documents, MyPillow and Lindell argue that his statements are not defamatory because Lindell ‘believes they are true,’ and they ‘are not inherently improbable.’”

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