Sarah Smith is the outdoors editor. She covers courts, business and breaking news in addition to outdoors events.
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The tick season has arrived in the northland with warm weather, but tick-borne diseases may actually be remnants of 2009, especially in dogs. In the past week, Dr. Mia Long, owner of Ark Animal Hospital outside of Park Rapids, has seen two patients on an emergency basis with tick borne diseases (TBD) caused by bites that likely occurred last fall. Trooper John, an 8½-year old English Springer spaniel, started limping on his hind leg March 22, said owner David Allman of Menahga. By the next night he was critically ill. "He couldn't even get up," Allman recalled.
An accused bank robber said he likely would serve as his own attorney because he can't afford to hire one. Edward Joseph Lowen, 53, a rural resident of Hubbard County, has been relatively quiet in the courtroom up until Monday, when he appeared for his scheduled omnibus hearing. He had many concerns and questions for District Judge Paul Rasmussen. "He is unrepresented at this time," said hubbard County Attorney Don Dearstyne.
A Park Rapids woman at the center of an alleged methamphetamine ring was sentenced Thursday to one year in jail. Kay Marie Peterson, 38, will be eligible for electronic home monitoring after she has served six months of her sentence. She must make restitution of $4,000 to the state for the undercover drug buys that resulted in her arrest and pay a $2,000 fine. "This is a serious offense," Hubbard County Attorney Don Dearstyne told the court.
The sentencing of two brothers in an armed standoff in a residential neighborhood of Park Rapids last December turned instead into a forum on racism and society's failures. Allen Gene Bloom Sr., 39, and Brian Jon Bloom, 31, were sentenced to 216 months in prison for their role in a drunken shooting rampage that ended after a four-hour armed standoff with 20 officers.
A man and woman were transported to the Bemidji hospital Wednesday afternoon following a two-vehicle accident south of Bemidji. The accident occurred at the intersection of Highway 71 and Hubbard County 9 in the northeast section of Hubbard County shortly after noon. James Oman of Duluth happened to be outside Fugate's Country Store at that intersection when the crash occurred. "I didn't really see anything," he said, adding, "the green car went right through the stop sign. "I wasn't really looking but I heard the boom and saw her spinning around toward me." The State Patrol said Cat
Hubbard County is gradually rehiring its workforce, temporary seasonal workers and part-time help, and for the third time in a year the Hubbard County Attorney approached the board to say: My turn. County Attorney Don Dearstyne requested elevating his part-time prosecutor to a full-time position. Assistant County Attorney Sharon Marten retired almost a year ago. She was the third attorney in the prosecutor's office.
The vernal equinox was a sunny day, but one that struggled to get above the freezing mark. That brisk weather didn't stop kids of all ages from participating in a Spring Activity Day at Itasca State Park. The park featured Do It Yourself nature projects at affordable prices. Kids smeared peanut butter on pinecones - and themselves - then rolled them in birdseed to make tiny but charming feeders for chickadees and nuthatches. Volunteer Don Norwood was in charge of this project, and the cleanup.
A proposal to streamline state government by shifting responsibilities for many functions to counties continues to roil Hubbard County commissioners. The 10-point plan was proposed last month by the Association of Minnesota Counties and came as a surprise to counties in the region, which reacted angrily to suggestions counties could take over road maintenance of state highways, state patrol duties of those same highways and localize functions such as the courts and jails to save the state $945 million. "The AMC just stabbed us in the back," said commissioner Dick Devine at the board's Marc