Archives for June 2020

FARIBAULT INMATE DIES OF COVID 19

A 43-year-old man who had been incarcerated at the Minnesota Correctional Facility in Faribault (FAIR-bow) has died. The Hennepin County Medical Examiner is performing an autopsy to determine the cause of death. The man, identified as Adrian Raymaar Keys, along with a number of other men who were behind bars in the prison, tested positive for COVID-19 on June 4th. The medical examiner will determine the cause of death. If determined to be related to COVID-19 complications, this would be the first such death of a person incarcerated in Minnesota.

BEMIDJI HOUSE FIRE SATURDAY

Bemidji Firefighters responded to a house fire Saturday evening in the 600 block of Lincoln Ave SE. No injuries were reported, but the fire caused moderate damage to the structure. Smoke alarms notified the occupants , who were all able to get out safely. So far, investigators believe the fire started accidentally in the attic area of the home. Stations 1, 2 and 3 responded.

BEMIDJI TO HOST POLICE FORUM

The City of Bemidji plans to host a public hearing on creating a police advisory committee for the city. They hope to hear from the community about how to work towards racial equity. The city is now asking for public input on the makeup of the committee and its mission. They hope it can serve as a listening opportunity for the city council to hear the voices of those living in Bemidji. The public forum has been scheduled for August 10th. The location is tentatively planned as the Sanford Center.

CASS DRUG RAID

Cass County Sheriff Tom Burch reports that on Saturday, June 20th, investigators executed a search warrant at a residence in Turtle Lake Township and seized a large amount of suspected methamphetamine, along with drug paraphernalia, firearms and ammunition. Arrested were 34 year old James Allen of Walker MN and 28 year old Jessica Teal… also of Walker. Both are currently in custody and formal charges are pending. The two are suspected of dealing a large amount of methamphetamine in the area. Assisting with the investigation was the Leech Lake Tribal Police Department and the Paul Bunyan Drug Task Force.

SMALL BUSINESS RELIEF OFFERED

Small businesses can now apply for a relief grant from the Minnesota Department of Employment and Economic Development. Governor Walz approved the Minnesota Small Business Relief Grants Program, which will provide up to $10,000 in grants to businesses that have been affected by COVID-19. The application period ends on July 2nd. For business owners to be eligible, their establishments must have a physical location in Minnesota and must be owned by a Minnesota resident. The application can be found at mn.gov/deed/relief/.

MNsure ENROLLMENT STILL AN OPTION

99,688 Minnesotans have come to MNsure.org and enrolled in private health insurance through a special enrollment period (SEP) or received eligibility for a public assistance program (Medical Assistance or MinnesotaCare) since March 1. As expected, sign-ups across all programs have been driven by concerns amid the pandemic. But you can still sign up. If you’ve recently lost your employer-sponsored health insurance, had an income change, or have another qualifying life event, come to MNsure.org to see if you’re eligible. In addition to the enrollment opportunities that are available year-round, MNsure also introduced two new special enrollment periods that provided expanded enrollment opportunities for Minnesotans. The MNsure Contact Center is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday, at 651-539-2099 or 855-366-7873.

RED LAKE FIRE LABLED ARSON

A fire that heavily damaged the Ponemah pow wow grounds on the Red Lake Indian Reservation, is now believed to have been intentionally set. The fire happened on Tuesday and it’s still unclear how much damage was caused. Tribal leaders say the fire has been ruled as arson, and investigators have identified four suspects in connection with it, but so far, they have not made any arrests.

MINNESOTA TO GET INCREASED SHIPMENTS OF COVID-19 DRUG

Minnesota state health officials received a long-awaited shipment of an experimental antiviral drug used to treat COVID-19 patients earlier this week, that they say could benefit 180 to 325 patients. The drug, C, which is donated by the manufacturer and distributed by federal and state governments, is still in short supply even though it was approved for emergency use May 1. For the past three weeks, Minnesota has been allocated only enough vials to treat 80 to 140 patients, depending on dosages needed.

RED LAKE ROAD WORK

Road Construction in Red Lake this week, led to one lane access and a temporary road closure from Junction of Highway 89 and Highway 1 to Red Lake High School. An alternate Route was set up… Walking Shield Road to Heart Lake Road. Signs were posted.

US CANADA BORDER REMAINS SHUT DOWN UNTIL JULY 21ST

The governments of Canada and the U.S. have now agreed that the 5,525-mile border will remain closed to all nonessential travel until at least July 21st as efforts continue to slow the spread of COVID-19. The border closure has been in effect since March 21, and it prevents all personal travel except for people who work across the border. Commerce, such as trucks and trains, continues. The original order had been set to expire on June 21st. The border has never been closed before as it is now.