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WALKER, Minn. -- The 25-year-old Coon Rapids, Minn., man arrested in connection with the abduction and death of 5-year-old Alayna Jeanne Ertl was charged Tuesday with second-degree murder, first-degree criminal sexual conduct, two counts of kidnapping and theft. The suspect, Zachary Todd Anderson, made his first court appearance on the criminal charges, all felonies, late Tuesday morning in Cass County District Court in Walker before Judge David Harrington. Harrington set unconditional bond at $2 million.
WALKER—A 43-year-old man was sentenced Monday to almost 20 years in prison in Cass County District Court for a criminal sexual conduct offense that happened in 2007. The Cass County Attorney's Office reported Elton James Curtis of Fargo, N.D., was sentenced by Judge Jana Austad to 19 and-a-half years for felony first-degree criminal sexual conduct. On top of his prison sentence, he also has a 10-year conditional release period and will have to register as a predatory offender.
A 60-year-old Walker man was injured Friday when the Harley Davidson he was driving went off the roadway onto the soft shoulder and lost control on Highway 65 in Aitkin County. The Minnesota State Patrol reported Eddie S. Amiot, who was wearing a helmet, was taken to Centra Care St. Cloud Hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. The state patrol said the Harley crashed when Amiot lost control and tried to correct. The Aitkin Police Department assisted at the scene. The crash was reported at 1:56 p.m.
TURTLE LAKE, N.D. -- A 19-year-old driver is dead and his passenger injured after a pickup they were in overturned and became partially submerged in a canal north of Turtle Lake early Sunday morning. Around 2:45 a.m., the driver, Cole Kuschel of Garrison, lost control of the vehicle on McClusky Canal Road, the North Dakota Highway Patrol said. The pickup went into the canal embankment and ejected the driver as it rolled. The Bismarck Dive and Rescue team found the body of the driver in the canal, the patrol said.
PIERRE, S.D. -- A woman in South Dakota has developed Zika virus symptoms after traveling to a country where Zika is currently being transmitted, the South Dakota Department of Health said in a news release Monday, Aug. 22. It is the first case of Zika in the state, the health department said. “This is a good reminder for anyone who travels to Zika-affected areas that it’s important to protect themselves from mosquito bites,” said Dr. Lon Kightlinger, state epidemiologist for the department.
MELROSE TOWNSHIP, Minn. -- Divers recovered the body of a missing boater on Monday, a day after a 47-year-old Meire Grove man was thrown from the watercraft. Dale Urban Steinemann was in the boat with his girlfriend’s two sons, ages 10 and 7. The boys were reportedly wearing life vests and were not hurt in the accident, said the Stearns County Sheriff's Office in a press release. The children were taken to Melrose Hospital for evaluation.
ST. PAUL -- Minnesota will remember Gen. John William Vessey Jr. on Thursday, Aug. 25, as Gov. Mark Dayton ordered flags to be flown at half-staff. Vessey, a former chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, died Aug. 18 at age 94. The Minneapolis native had a highly decorated 46 years in the military. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1992.
IRONTON—A 30-year-old Brainerd man died early Monday morning in a head-on, two-vehicle collision on Highway 210 near Crow Wing County Road 59 in Ironton. The man killed was identified as Richard D. Van Horn, the Minnesota State Patrol reported.
PEQUOT LAKES—A hit-and-run crash Wednesday night sent a bicyclist to the hospital and tips from the public sent a man to jail Thursday. About 8:35 p.m. Wednesday, the Crow Wing County Sheriff's Office received a call of a traffic crash in which a bicyclist was struck by a full-size truck on the 5900 block of Wild Acres Road, Pequot Lakes.