St. Paul Pioneer Press
MINNEAPOLIS - Veteran Star Tribune movie critic Colin Covert resigned Monday, Dec. 10, after editors at the Minneapolis newspaper discovered Covert had plagiarized “unique language” used by other critics in at least nine reviews over the past decade. Covert lifted lines, without attribution, from reviews published by the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Hollywood Reporter and the late New Yorker writer Pauline Kael, one of the most famous film critics of the past century.
ST. PAUL - The University of Minnesota Raptor Center last week euthanized a red-tailed hawk that had appeared in a widely shared Facebook photo with an arrow through its leg. The Raptor Center was first alerted to the hawk’s plight on Nov. 30, but its volunteers were initially unable to catch the wounded bird where it was spotted in Brooklyn Center. After a photo of the hawk was posted to the Raptor Center Facebook page and shared widely, a second tip was called in on Dec. 5 and the hawk was captured.
MINNEAPOLIS -- The Twins appear to have replaced second baseman Brian Dozier. According to reports by The Athletic and ESPN, the Twins and former Brewers second baseman Jonathan Schoop have agreed to one-year contract worth $7.5 million plus incentives. Schoop, 27, was an all-star in 2017, when he hit .293 with 32 home runs and 105 runs batted in in Baltimore. But he slumped last season and was traded to Milwaukee. Between the two clubs, he hit .233 with 21 homers and 61 RBIs.
ST. PAUL -- One man was killed and another person was wounded by gunfire Sunday night in St. Paul. Officers on patrol Dec. 9 heard multiple gunshots shortly after 9 p.m. and soon found the two victims inside a vehicle in the Payne-Phalen neighborhood. Paramedics took both individuals to Regions Hospital, where one man died, police said early Monday. The other is being treated for injuries that are not life-threatening, said Sgt. Mike Ernster, a St. Paul police spokesman.
MINNEAPOLIS — The Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office recaptured an inmate in Little Canada on Wednesday morning, Nov. 28, after he escaped custody from the county jail in downtown Minneapolis. Michael Frank Simon, 57, was on the run for about three hours before being recaptured. Sheriff’s officials say Simon escaped in his orange jail clothes about 7 a.m. Wednesday and was spotted on surveillance video running down the street.
NORTHFIELD, Minn. — A former student at St. Olaf College in Northfield is fighting both criminal charges and his expulsion from school for alleged sexual contact with an intoxicated classmate. Dilip Rao, 19, of Barrington, Ill., brought a woman he didn’t know back to his dorm room in November 2017 after drinking with her and three others. Rao said they kissed and groped each other on his bed but stopped once she fell asleep.
ST. PAUL - A home exploded in St. Paul’s Payne-Phalen neighborhood Friday morning, Nov. 23, sending a fireball into the sky that was reportedly visible from miles away. Some 40 firefighters responded to the scene on the 600 block of Payne Avenue at about 8:30 a.m. One man who was inside the home was pulled from the wreckage and taken by ambulance to Regions Hospital with injuries.
MINNEAPOLIS — The committee tasked with recommending finalists for the next University of Minnesota president has identified a small number for further vetting. The group said Friday, Nov. 16, it had interviewed nine candidates from an applicant pool of 67. Among those nine were five women and three people of color. A smaller number of those interviewed were selected for further vetting, including reference and background checks and credentials verification.
ST. PAUL — An autopsy determined a University of St. Thomas student who was found dead in her dorm room in October had asthma, which caused respiratory distress and sudden death, according to the Ramsey County medical examiner’s office. A roommate of Katherine “Katie” Mullen, 19, found her unresponsive in her bed in Morrison Hall the morning of Oct. 19.
DULUTH, Minn. -- A 60-year-old balsam fir from Nemadji State Forest has been cut and will decorate the Governor’s Residence in St. Paul this holiday season. “This year’s tree is absolutely gorgeous — tall, full, and almost perfectly shaped,” Jean Mouelle, the DNR forester who selected it, said in a statement. “It’s an impressive example of a balsam fir.”