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WASHINGTON (AP) — Spurred by a horrific elementary school shooting, President Barack Obama vowed to send Congress new policy proposals for reducing gun violence by January. "This time, the words need to lead to action," Obama said Wednesday. He tasked Vice President Joe Biden with leading an administration-wide effort to create the new recommendations and pledged to push for their implementation without delay.
CHANHASSEN, Minn. (AP) — A long-running Twin Cities dinner theater is branching into musical concerts. Chanhassen Dinner Theatres plans to debut a 2013 concert series for audiences on its Fireside Stage. The theater tested audience interest in a concert series this year and says it was a success.
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota's Department of Public Safety says about 1,300 people have been arrested for driving while intoxicated so far in December. State law enforcement agencies are working overtime hours this month as part of a campaign to prevent drunken driving tragedies. That's accompanied by a statewide advertising campaign to notify Minnesotans of the added patrols. In the previous three Decembers, 28 people total were killed in crashes caused by drunk drivers. In all, over the last five years, 651 people were killed in such crashes.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — More people in the Twin Cities are applying for gun permits in the aftermath of the Connecticut elementary school shooting. Anoka County had 36 applications Monday and another 32 on Tuesday, both of which set a one-day record. Sheriff's Cmdr. Paul Sommer says when there's talk of new gun control efforts, there's an uptick in permit applications.
By DAVID KLEPPER, Associated Press Writer NEWTOWN, Conn. (AP) — Newtown returned its students to their classrooms Tuesday for the first time since last week’s massacre and faced the agonizing task of laying others to rest, as this grieving town wrestled with the same issues gripping the country: violence, gun control and finding a way forward.
PAYNESVILLE, Minn. (AP) — A hazardous materials team is trying to determine what sickened students at a Paynesville school. Paynesville Police Chief Paul Wegner says 20 students were sent to a hospital or clinic Tuesday to be checked out. He says six students were taken by ambulance and 14 were taken by their parents. Paynesville Superintendent Bob Huot (HYEW'-eht) told the St. Cloud Times seven students felt woozy during a choir concert Monday night and were taken to a hospital. He says they felt fine by Tuesday morning.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Hasbro says it will soon reveal a gender-neutral Easy-Bake Oven after meeting with a New Jersey girl who started a campaign calling on the toy maker to make one that appeals to all kids. McKenna Pope, 13, of Garfield, N.J., got more than 40,000 signatures on her online petition at Change.org and the support of celebrity chefs including Bobby Flay, who backed her call for Hasbro to make a gender-neutral oven and to include boys in the ads.
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The executive director of Minnesota's Democratic-Farmer-Labor Party has been arrested on suspicion of drunken driving after he hit two parked cars in Minneapolis. The Star Tribune reports that Corey Day was arrested Saturday night on suspicion of drunken driving in south Minneapolis. He was still being held in Hennepin County jail as of late Monday afternoon. Day did not immediately return phone and email messages seeking comment on Tuesday. The Star Tribune reports Day previously pled guilty to a charge of drunken driving in 2009.
LITTLE FALLS, Minn. (AP) — A central Minnesota charged with killing two teenage cousins who broke into his home on Thanksgiving is out of jail. Morrison County jail officials say 64-year-old Byron David Smith of rural Little Falls posted $50,000 cash as conditional bail on Tuesday morning. Judge Douglas Smith cut Smith's bail sharply Monday despite a plea by prosecutor Todd Kosovich to double or even triple it. Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.
BEIRUT (AP) — NBC's chief foreign correspondent Richard Engel said he and his television crew were kidnapped for five days by pro-regime gunmen who subjected them to mock executions and kept them bound and blindfolded. They escaped during a firefight between their captors and rebels and reached Turkey on Tuesday. However, it was not immediately clear whether all those abducted with Engel were accounted for.