Staff Directory 10644516

Dan Browning

Reporter | General assignment
phone: 612-673-4493
Dan Browning is an award-winning general assignment reporter covering Greater Minnesota on the regional team. He has experience cover federal courts and agencies, investigations, medical research and health care, financial services, military affairs and government. He has also been an editor overseeing suburban coverage, an assistant business editor, and computer-assisted reporting editor. Dan has master's degrees in international journalism from USC, and in journalism from the University of Oregon at Eugene.
Recent content from Dan Browning
University of Minnesota Prof. Len Ferrington and his students are looking into why trout grow quickly in some streams in winter and lose weight in oth

University of Minnesota researchers work to secure the future of trout

A U study begun in 2006 seeks its last appropriation.
The bodies of Gloria and Willie Scheel were found in their Toyota Prius in Kandiyohi County, officials said. The Paynesville, Minn., couple were repor

Grandson booked on 2 murder counts in deaths of couple called 'Paynesville royalty'

The bodies of Wilbert and Gloria Scheel were found Thursday in their car on a rural road. Their grandson is in custody.
Pipestone native Sara Priester, left, with daughter Chloe Lear, says “no child should have to go through what Chloe has gone through.” Chloe drive

Growing diversity sparks tough conversations in Pipestone

A racial slur on a student's truck prompted the town's mayor to speak out and stimulated soul-searching in this predominantly white, but rapidly changing city.
The company culled through hundreds of its customers’ stories about their boots and picked 32 to highlight in a new display at its store in Red Wing

'Wall of Honor' to tell the enduring tales of Red Wing boots

Red Wing Shoe Co. culled through about 600 stories submitted by customers since fall, telling of how they wear their boots, and selected 32 of the tales to showcase in a new two-story "Wall of Honor" display, which opens Monday at the company's retail store in Red Wing.

Bookkeeper charged after allegedly embezzling $500K to gamble

An 18-year employee of Farm Merchantile allegedly used the money to gamble.
Deputy Register 035 Vinton Lewis and his wife, Janet, run the South Saint Paul Quick-Serv License Center. They have had to take tens of thousands of d

Minnesota legislators want answers about MNLARS no-bid contract

Legislators are asking why the state used no-bid process.

Threats prompt closure of school in Aitkin County, Minn.

The superintendent says the messages sent to students on Snapchat and Facebook were related to an earlier incident at the school.
Bakery owner Bill Hanisch and his 13-year-old son, William (not pictured), painted the latest message on Barn Bluff: a memorial to Red Wing basketball

Red Wing officials weigh referendum that could ban Barn Bluff painting

Long tradition of painting landmark overlooking city under new scrutiny.
FILE PHOTO: A 46 year-old man was arrested during a prostitution sting in in St. Peter, Minn., in 2017.

Dozens swept up in pre-Super Bowl sex-traffic sting operation

Undercover officers trolled social media for suspects seeking to meet minors for sex.
Jerry and Patty Wetterling pose at St. Mark's Episcopal Cathedral in Minneapolis in October.

Wetterlings, feds square off with media over investigative records

A Stearns County judge must decide whether a state law on public records conflicts with constitutionally protected privacy rights.
Poppy Lindeman, the baby delivered on the side of a road by her father Taylor in Chisago City on Monday.

Minnesota couple deliver Christmas Day baby on side of road

They were on their way to United Hospital when their third child arrived.

Minneapolis coin dealer indicted on fraud, money laundering charges

Feds say Scott Luther bilked customers deals exceeding $1.5 million.

Columbia Heights restaurant owner indicted on federal forced-labor charge

The owner of Royal Orchid allegedly promised to help a teenager from the Dominican Republic get a U.S. education, then forced him to work less than $1 an hour.
Manop Kaeoka was shocked when he read about the owner of a popular Thai restaurant who was charged in federal court last week with tricking a young ma

More allegations of forced labor for Columbia Heights restaurant owner

A second immigrant has accused Pisanu "Pat" Sukhtipyaroge of forcing him to work at his Twin Cities restaurants.

Columbia Heights Thai restaurant owner charged with forced labor

Federal authorities say a young man was lured from the Dominican Republic by the restaurant owner with promises of American schooling, but then found himself under a "debt bondage arrangement."

Radio host convicted in Ponzi scheme loses bid to overturn conviction

Judge upheld radio host Patrick Kiley's 20-year prison sentence.
Catherine O'Connor says the gold box with her mom's ashes and other mementos keep her memory alive despite the bitter fight that ensued over her care.

Theft charges against Burnsville woman dismissed after bitter family feud

A judge found insufficient evidence in Kandiyohi County, which led a Carver County prosecutor to drop charges there as well.

U of M law grad admits guilt in porn-troll scheme

The plea bargain anticipates that attorney John Steele with cooperate with prosecutors against lawyer Paul Hansmeier, who has denied the charges.

Judge dismisses suit alleging Associated Bank aided Minnesota Ponzi scheme

The court-appointed receiver marshaling assets from Trevor Cook's fraud scheme immediately filed a notice that it would appeal the order dismissing the lawsuit.
Prince's sister Tyka Nelson, right, arrives at the Carver County Justice Center for a hearing on her brother's estate Thursday, Jan. 12, 2017, in Chas

Court holds off determining Prince's legal heirs, picks firm to oversee estate

Filings in Carver County District Court raised questions of conflicts of interest in the management of the estate.
In this Feb. 4, 2007, file photo, Prince performs during the halftime show at the Super Bowl XLI football game in Miami.

Prince's siblings move to lock down his estate

The late musician's siblings say that a challenge to how Minnesota defines "family" is draining the estate.

Would-be heirs raise constitutional challenge over Prince estate

Attorneys say court-approved procedure for establishing heirship violates equal protection clauses of Minnesota and U.S. constitutions
Minnesota Attorney General Lori Swanson

Minnesota attorney general demands EpiPen maker turn over sales data

Lori Swanson has demanded information from Mylan about its pricing policies.

Jurors find former Cold Spring brewery controller guilty of fraud

The Sartell man ripped off his employer, family and friends in two separate schemes.
Catherine O’Connor laid out documents in her fight over her mother’s conservatorship.

Daughter charged with exploiting rich mom in Burnsville family feud

A bitter feud with siblings led to audit and charges.
Simone Jarvis helped take care of her grandmother, Ellen Starkka, 83, at their home in Crosslake. Her baby, Oscar Camacho, 2 months, was with her.

Crow Wing County guardian's duties stripped after neglect allegations

A pattern of unpaid bills, conflict with families.
In this Feb. 4, 2007 file photo, Prince performs during the halftime show at the Super Bowl XLI football game at Dolphin Stadium in Miami.

Who's family? Sibling question at heart of Prince estate case

The issue of whether Prince and Duane Nelson shared a father has become a multimillion-dollar question in the musician's estate case.
A BCA investigator gathered evidence around the Oldsmobile being driven by Philando Castile when he was stopped by St. Anthony police in Falcon Height

Racial disparities in Twin Cities arrests are widespread

Despite recent attention on the city of St. Anthony, nearly every metro police department exhibits a racial disparity in its arrest rates, according to a Star Tribune analysis of recently released FBI Uniform Crime Reports data for serious crimes.
David Welliver, shown in 1996.

Former investment advisor pleads guilty to securities fraud

David Welliver admits misleading investors as he struggled increase the assets of his struggling mutual fund.
Prince set a Billboard charts record for placing 19 albums in the Top 200 in a single week.

Lawyers may have 'potentially relevant' info on Prince heirs

A special administrator overseeing Prince's estate says confidential documents at Henson & Efron could shed light on potential heirs.

Former Cold Spring Brewing exec charged with bilking $350,000

St. Cloud man allegedly also stole over $330,000 in Ponzi scheme.

State set a record last year for punishing lawyers

The state Supreme Court disbarred six lawyers and suspended the licenses of 47 others last year.

Carver County judge to unseal filings by some of Prince's purported heirs

Documents of those claiming to be Prince's children would remain sealed but those of others may be public.
Prince's half-brother Alfred Jackson, center, made his way into the Carver County Justice Center on June 27, 2016 in Chaska, MN. Attorneys representin

Judge may seek Minnesota appeals court review for complex Prince estate

A search through thousands of boxes of documents has yet to turn up a will.
In this Nov. 22 photo, Prince presented the award for Favorite Album for Soul/R&B at the American Music Awards in Los Angeles.

Attorneys who Prince avoided in life now oversee his estate

He had no will, so attorneys — a profession the star distrusted — are in charge.

Prince estate hearing will be public, judge rules

Reporters will be allowed to cover the hearing, but no audio or visual recording or sketch artists will be allowed.
Paisley Park Studios in Chanhassen is where the musician Prince was found dead on April 21.

Who's claiming to be Prince's heirs? It's a secret

The next step will be a hearing on genetic testing rules for determining "heirship" to the estate, which has been valued at $100 million to $300 million.

In Minnesota, crimes against the elderly are 'doubling year-over-year'

Advocates gather to hash out possible solutions.
Paul Hansmeier

U.S. court hammers Minnesota porn troll attorney

Paul Hansmeier and his associates targeted those who downloaded porn.
The attorney for a man purporting to be Prince's son is objecting to the estate's special administrator's request to hire music industry experts.

Judge to decide by Thursday first conflict over Prince's estate

The trust in charge of Prince's assets says speed and expertise are needed to maximize the estate's value.
Balloons, flowers and other mementos on the fence surrounding Paisley Park in Chanhassen recently mourned the loss of Prince.

Tight deadlines proposed for potential heirs to Prince's estate

The special administrator marshaling Prince's $100 million-plus estate has submitted a proposal to verify potential heirs in an effort to resolve parentage questions by the end of the month.
Attorney Bill Mauzy has spoken on behalf of Dr. Howard Kornfeld, a pain and addiction specialist called to help Prince.

Prince likely was dead for hours as picture of last days emerges

Among the new details, the singer was given an IV treatment at a local hospital the day before he died, a source with knowledge of the investigation said.
Prince's sister Tyka Nelson, center, leaves the Carver County Justice Center in Chaska with her husband Maurice Philips on May 2, when Carver County D

Two possible heirs file claim over Prince's $100M estate

Two more purported heirs of the late megastar Prince filed a motion in Carver County District Court on Wednesday to intervene in his $100 million-dollar-plus estate.
A law enforcement officer walked out of a door at Paisley Park on Tuesday. About a half-dozen unmarked cars were parked there as investigators returne

Local doctor treating Prince is identified in search warrant

Dr. Michael Todd Schulenberg, a family practitioner, had seen Prince twice before his body was found in a Paisley Park elevator April 21, according to the warrant.
Balloons, flowers and other mementos on the fence surrounding Paisley Park in Chanhassen mourned the loss of Prince.

Prince was under Minn. doctor's care over withdrawal symptoms

The local physician, who has not been publicly identified, saw the singer in the month before his death.
Fans took their picture in front of Prince's now-gold star on the wall of First Ave. earlier this week.

Judge authorizes DNA testing of Prince's blood for any heir claims

The Carver County judge overseeing Prince’s estate issued an order Friday giving the special administrator permission to conduct DNA tests of the late musician’s blood,…
Prince's sister Tyka Nelson, center, leaves the Carver County Justice Center in Chaska with her husband Maurice Philips on Monday, May 2, 2016. With t

Special administrator for Prince's estate confirmed

With the approval of most of Prince's siblings, a Carver County judge Monday confirmed the appointment of Bremer Trust, National Association as special administrator to manage the late musician's assets.

Minnesota conservator admits stealing demented woman's money

A woman who stole $4,230 from an elderly dementia patient whose finances she was managing was sentenced last week in Anoka County to a year…
Tyka Nelson (facing camera), sister of Prince, was embraced near an entryway at Paisley Park early on the afternoon that her brother was found dead at

Without a will, it could take years to estimate Prince's estate

The wrangling over Prince's estate began formally Tuesday when one of his siblings filed an emergency motion to have a special administrator appointed.
These sports cars were caught by the State Patrol going more than 100 miles per hour.

At least 12 sports cars reach 'well over' 100 mph on I-394

The drivers of a dozen or more high-end sports cars were cited for reckless driving Saturday after a state trooper clocked them at more than…

Minnesota tax cheats sanctioned by judge — again

While awaiting sentencing for an illegal income tax scheme, a Prior Lake couple violated the conditions of their release by helping counsel clients at their…
In 2012, IRS investigators seized numerous boxes and computer equipment from the offices of America Group US Inc. and from the Shakopee residence of i

Minnesota couple facing prison for tax fraud busted again

The couple had pleaded guilty in November to a multimillion-dollar income tax refund scheme that preyed mostly on immigrants.

Suit alleges kids stole $24M from Champlin mom with dementia

The Engels Construction heiress, 79, has dementia; allegations focus on one son.
Paul Hansmeier

Embattled lawyer faces new fraud allegations, challenge from bankruptcy trustee

Trustee seeks to deny Paul Hansmeier bankruptcy protection, alleging improprieties.

Dakota County scrambles for guardians as firm quits

Meridian Services cites "business reasons" for exiting county services.

Minnesota conservator with trail of complaints is leaving cases

Clarence Coffindaffer, under fire for how he handles finances of the vulnerable, to exit.

Obituary: Public servant Leo Foley, 87, was a master of reinvention

Lord only knows what former state Sen. Leo T. Foley is up to now, but if his life is any example, his death Feb.…
Keith Adams, whose schizophrenia has placed him under the supervision of a court-appointed financial caretaker called a conservator, enjoys a breakfas

Former clients of thieving conservator face new troubles in court

The fallout from the thefts by Stephen Grisham continues to roil the courts.

Social Security targets disabilities fraud in Minnesota

St. Paul unit to tackle Social Security probes.
Catherine O’Connor laid out documents she’s accumulated in her fight over the conservatorship of her late mother, Patricia Heinrich.

Minnesota safeguards how vulnerable adults' money gets spent

State system has evolved into the only mandatory, online financial reporting system for conservators in the country.

Think-Off ponders effect of wealth on democracy

Can a nation built on the principle of “one person, one vote” function when the gulf between the haves and the have-nots is so wide?…

Lawsuit preceded federal raids on Minnesota chiropractic offices

The search warrants for up to 10 Twin Cities facilities remain sealed.
Schaun Waste, former co-owner of Guardian Gold & Silver Exchange, was ordered banned from the precious metals industry.

Coin dealer ordered to repay $2 million and is barred from industry

A bankrupt Twin Cities roofing contractor who tried to reinvent himself during the Great Recession by selling gold and silver coins has been barred for…

FBI agents raid 6 to 10 chiropractic offices in Twin Cities

The raids follow insurance company complaints about staged accidents and fraudulent billing. "This has been like 10 years in the making," Insurance Federation of Minnesota official says.

Narco-terror convict deported from Minnesota, but who is he?

Federal agencies can't agree on man's ID.
Abdirizak Mohamed Warsame, 20, of Eagan, was arrested on Wednesday.

Judge orders Twin Cities man suspected of ISIL support held

At least 10 young Somali-American men from Minnesota allegedly conspired to join ISIL.
Board of Regents Chairman Dean Johnson and President Eric Kaler listened as attorneys Joe Dixon and Karen Schanfeld delivered their report to the Boar

U athletics probe details serious violations of spending rules

Payments for booze, parties and hair stylists were among improper receipts found, but investigators say there is little evidence of sexual harassment at the U's athletics department during Norwood Teague's tenure.
Paul Hansmeier

Judge orders takeover of controversial Mpls. lawyer's assets

The judge cited a pattern of dishonesty in rejecting request to pay off debts over five years.
As part of his campaign to woo donors for the $166 million Athletes Village, former U Athletics Director Norwood Teague spent $30,000 on meals -- $11,

U regents say they were kept in dark about Teague complaints

Regents say they were kept in the dark initially as sexual harassment complaints led to resignation of Norwood Teague.
As part of his campaign to woo donors for the $166 million Athletes Village, former U Athletics Director Norwood Teague spent $30,000 on meals -- $11,

U to release results of athletic department investigations

The reports include a review into sexual harassment in the athletics department and an internal financial audit under former athletic director Norwood Teague.

Nov. 17, 2015: Minn. couple plead guilty to tax scam preying on immigrants

Costly scheme targeted immigrants seeking help in Minnesota and Florida.
Paul Hansmeier

Minneapolis lawyer facing ethics complaint over porn suits

Bankruptcy trustee objects to debt relief plan for attorney who filed "nuisance lawsuits."
An Aug. 10 complaint against Gophers Associate Athletic Director Mike Ellis concerns pornographic images on his phone.

Key Minnesota athletics executive Mike Ellis resigns

Mike Ellis has been on voluntary leave at the U's request since late August pending an investigation into unspecified complaints against him.
Jonathan Aanestad wants to be free of $1.3 million in debt and a trail of legal disputes.

Minnesota political consultant seeks to ditch debts, legal history

Bankruptcy trustee is investigating Jonathan Aanestad's petition for relief.
University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler, shown earlier in the month, sent the eight-page Interim Report and Equity Plan for Gopher Athletics to t

U report hints at concerns about gender equity in athletics

Details of 2014 consultant's review of athletics department have never been publicly released
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