Nick Ferraro / St. Paul Pioneer Press
ST. PAUL — Tanya Shafer smokes, but prefers to take it outside. Shafer, who lives at Colleen Loney Manor, a public-housing apartment complex in West St. Paul, said she often smells secondhand cigarette smoke coming from other units. "I don't like it," she said, shortly after sucking down a Pyramid Light 100 one afternoon last week. "That's why I always go outside."
INVER GROVE HEIGHTS, Minn. — As a first-time business owner, Dan Punjani has a lot of worries. In June, the 29-year-old opened a Super Day gas station at an Inver Grove Heights location where another gas station had shut down. "It's a lot harder than I thought it would be, honestly, but I take it day by day," Punjani said. "There's a lot to think about." So when an Inver Grove Heights police officer approached him last month with a voluntary program to prevent credit card skimming at his pumps, he gladly accepted the offer—and signed up on the spot.
ROSEMOUNT, Minn.—The Dakota County sheriff's office will stop collecting DNA samples without a warrant from defendants charged with certain violent crimes under a deal reached with a Rosemount man who sued over the legality of the practice. The American Civil Liberties Union of Minnesota filed suit in April against Dakota County Sheriff Tim Leslie on behalf of 68-year-old John David Emerson, who faced a second-degree charge of assault with a dangerous weapon following an alleged road rage incident in October 2015 in Hastings.
ST. PAUL — A state highway that stretches from Minnetonka to Inver Grove Heights has an identity crisis. It's Minnesota 62 from Interstate 494 in Minnetonka to just west of Fort Snelling, when it becomes Minnesota 55. Across the Minnesota River in Mendota Heights, its name changes yet again: to Minnesota 110, which ends at Interstate 494 in Inver Grove Heights.
APPLE VALLEY, Minn.—The remodeled rambler at 1051 Ramsdell Drive in Apple Valley is on the market for $279,900 and includes a new roof, siding, granite countertops, new carpet and refinished hardwood floors. It also comes with a tragic history. Around Dec. 26, 2014, previous owner and amateur filmmaker David Crowley shot and killed his wife, Komel, and their 5-year-old daughter, Raniya, before turning the gun on himself. They were found Jan. 17, when a neighbor who decided to check on them peered through a living room window and saw the bodies on the floor.
ROSEMOUNT, Minn. — To highlight the need for motorists to obey the state's stop arm law, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety on Monday released a video of an 11-year-old Rosemount girl who was nearly struck by a pickup truck after getting off her school bus. The incident happened last December as the girl passed in front of the bus to walk home. The bus driver's "quick actions alerted the girl to the passing vehicle, helping the Rosemount sixth-grader avoid injury or possible death," the department of public safety said in a news release.
HASTINGS, Minn. — Hastings police say they have shut down an elaborate counterfeit money-making operation that a convicted felon had been running out of a stolen motor home, and that his work could be being passed around the metro area. Police discovered the operation last week after arresting Steven Kenneth Kuhns, 49, of Hastings on two outstanding felony warrants out of Dakota and Goodhue counties.
INVER GROVE HEIGHTS, Minn.—For almost seven decades, a historical marker on U.S. 52 in Inver Grove Heights paid homage to the site of a former Sioux village. Joe Atkins, who grew up in Inver Grove Heights, recently recalled how the limestone and red brick marker, which measured 12 feet wide and 15 feet deep, "popped out of the landscape." "There just wasn't much out there when we were kids," said Atkins, a Dakota County commissioner. "There was a refinery on one side and not much else on the other."
WEST ST. PAUL, Minn. — Joe Gobely fought back tears as he stepped up to the microphone. "It's going to be a tough one," the West St. Paul police officer said, K-9 "Doc" by his side. "I'll try my best to get through." Gobely, Doc's handler, stood before the West St. Paul City Council Monday, Sept. 11, to explain how arthritis and an injured back will force the German shepherd, who is just under 3 years old, into retirement after just a year and a half on the streets. He is the city's only K-9.
ST. PAUL — Lucifer Nguyen, the man accused of fatally shooting a Maplewood woman July 29 while fleeing police in Mendota Heights, pleaded not guilty to all charges during a court hearing Monday. Prosecutors have charged Nguyen, 44, of New Hope, with second-degree murder, two counts of first-degree aggravated robbery and one count each of first-degree burglary and kidnapping in connection with a violent crime spree that left 48-year Beverly Cory dead.