Staff Directory 10644901

Kevin Giles

Reporter | East Metro
phone: 651-925-5037
Kevin Giles covers Washington County issues such as public policy, transportation, environment and development, prosecution and courts, prisons and the St. Croix River watershed.
Recent content from Kevin Giles
St. Croix River bridge inspiring shifts in regional transportation

St. Croix River bridge inspiring shifts in regional transportation

Business owners in downtown Stillwater say that more locals are shopping now that the commuter frenzy over the Lift Bridge is gone.
Crack along water main caused I-694 shutdown; road closed until at least Friday

Crack along water main caused I-694 shutdown; road closed until at least Friday

Ground heaving or roadwork might have forced damage to pipe beneath freeway, city official said.
Washout in Oakdale could keep I-694 closed into next week

Washout in Oakdale could keep I-694 closed into next week

Traffic was jamming up or crawling along on east metro highways as they absorbed traffic detoured from I-694, which is closed in Oakdale because of a sinkhole resulting from a water main break.
Maplewood man gets 20 years for hammer attack on mother

Maplewood man gets 20 years for hammer attack on mother

David Edward Williams Jr. pleaded guilty last summer to attempted murder.

New Wisconsin property rights law could spur development on St. Croix River

Legislation seen as a victory for Murr family, who lost their case before U.S. Supreme Court in June.
Call of the wild: Minnesota women explore public lands, by bicycle

Call of the wild: Minnesota women explore public lands, by bicycle

Four Minnesotans on bikes explore the southern U.S. on three-month journey.

Judge dismisses final lawsuit against Stillwater school district

Attorney for 834 Voice, the group that sued, objects to order handed down while dispute is being mediated.
Anita E. Buck, who put her stamp on St. Croix River Valley history, dies at 92

Anita E. Buck, who put her stamp on St. Croix River Valley history, dies at 92

Once Anita E. Buck found her love of history, it caught on big, inspiring a passion for chronicling the St. Croix River Valley’s rich past.…

New crossing fixes long-standing problems at Grey Cloud Island Township

The updated crossing in Washington County will help clear clogged portion.
Trail work will close area around Stillwater Lift Bridge temporarily

Trail work will close area around Stillwater Lift Bridge temporarily

The span will close in April for conversion and not reopen until June 2019.
Interest surging in Washington County Veterans Campground

Interest surging in Washington County Veterans Campground

Reservations surge for camp in Washington County that has been helping veterans heal since the 1920s.

New faces ready to take over in Falcon Heights

Voters in Falcon Heights were opting for new faces at City Hall on Tuesday in the wake of the fatal shooting within their borders of…
Long-awaited St. Croix bridge is feat of engineering, political will

Long-awaited St. Croix bridge is feat of engineering, political will

The $646 million bridge, with a design so rare it's only the second of its type in the U.S., required a congressional exemption to span the federally protected river prized for its natural beauty.

Stillwater school board votes to investigate two members

Board won't say what the probe is about, but one member insists it has nothing to do with the recent controversy surrounding the closing of three schools.
Washington County charter school opens in the woods in a summer camp setting

Washington County charter school opens in the woods in a summer camp setting

River Grove charter school near Stillwater sticks with nature.
Mahtomedi neighbors go to court over stormwater flooding

Mahtomedi neighbors go to court over stormwater flooding

Homeowners blame a street project for poor drainage. City says it's searching for a permanent solution.
Baby who survived Guatemala earthquake now embraces motherhood in White Bear Lake

Baby who survived Guatemala earthquake now embraces motherhood in White Bear Lake

Ali Adsit will tell her story at an October fundraising event for the EVOLVE adoption agency.
How much growth can the new St. Croix River bridge drive?

How much growth can the new St. Croix River bridge drive?

Housing starts in western Wisconsin's St. Croix County show signs of recovery after a flood of foreclosures during the Great Recession.

High water prompts no-wake zone on St. Croix this weekend

Weekend boaters warned to keep speeds to 5 mph.
St. Croix bridge project spawned dozens of environmental improvements

St. Croix bridge project spawned dozens of environmental improvements

Environmental improvements on both sides of the St. Croix River are driven by an influx of funding.

Hotel workers in Washington Co. will be trained to spot sex trafficking

The "Speak Up" campaign is designed to protect women and girls.
Four more girls added to list of Woodbury school bus sex assaults

Four more girls added to list of Woodbury school bus sex assaults

Harvey Kneif, employed by Washington County schools, now charged with 10 counts.
Washington County's little Valley Library hoping for big changes

Washington County's little Valley Library hoping for big changes

Users want more space, defying a recent trend to shrink in favor of digital collections.

Counties, school districts set maximum tax levies for 2018

Washington County's is up from recent years; Hennepin and Ramsey stay about same.
More traffic crossing new St. Croix River bridge than old Stillwater bridge

More traffic crossing new St. Croix River bridge than old Stillwater bridge

Some motorists might have avoided the old Stillwater Lift Bridge.
Repairs close Main Street Stairs, in Stillwater, into November

Repairs close Main Street Stairs, in Stillwater, into November

Repairs will be made to the second landing of the stairway, as well as an adjoining wall.
Brothers tied to former Stillwater mayor plead guilty to tax crimes in federal court

Brothers tied to former Stillwater mayor plead guilty to tax crimes in federal court

Thurlee and Roylee Belfrey withheld taxes but never paid the government. Ex-mayor, in separate case, admitted to tax fraud.
Hautman wins again: Minnesotans keep up duck stamp dominance

Hautman wins again: Minnesotans keep up duck stamp dominance

Bob Hautman painted a pair mallards to win his third contest.
New regional trail opens in southern Washington County

New regional trail opens in southern Washington County

Point Douglas Trail will connect to Hastings bridge next June.

Judge tosses lawsuit against city of Grant

Council member alleged retaliation over his views on waste site near school.
'Don't trust anyone:' Hard-to-pin-down scammers flourish in Minnesota

'Don't trust anyone:' Hard-to-pin-down scammers flourish in Minnesota

The state doesn't have a comprehensive database tracking the fraudsters, who are getting increasingly creative.
Mahtomedi sex trafficker who brags of 'running 6 girls' goes to prison

Mahtomedi sex trafficker who brags of 'running 6 girls' goes to prison

Shaun Michael Maubach was also dealing methamphetamine, Washington County complaint alleges.
John Runk's movie clips of Stillwater show everyday life

John Runk's movie clips of Stillwater show everyday life

The postwar films created a precious archive of city's rich history.
Attorney says school districts need to improve their response to Minnesota data law

Attorney says school districts need to improve their response to Minnesota data law

Public records attorney says districts need to improve their response to Minnesota law.
Julie Galonska named superintendent at St. Croix National Scenic Riverway

Julie Galonska named superintendent at St. Croix National Scenic Riverway

The National Park Service job oversees two major rivers that were placed into federal protection in 1968.
Former Woodbury high school principal sentenced for stealing funds

Former Woodbury high school principal sentenced for stealing funds

Aaron Harper, who led the opening of East Ridge, won't serve time in jail, a judge decides.

Reconstruction of historic thoroughfare planned in Stillwater

Planning begins for short but well-traveled stretch of Third Street, post-Lift Bridge.

Judge finds that Cottage Grove golf course owner sexually harassed employees

Incidents occurred at Mississippi Dunes, where women were groped and a bar manager was fired, order says.
Dorothy McNeill Tucker dies at 93, funded U women's sports research

Dorothy McNeill Tucker dies at 93, funded U women's sports research

The Tucker Center for Research on Girls & Women in Sport remains the only research center of its kind.
Maplewood man pleads guilty to threatening his parents and beating his mother with a hammer

Maplewood man pleads guilty to threatening his parents and beating his mother with a hammer

David Edward Williams Jr. beat his mother with a hammer, complaint says.
Washington County's proposed tax hike is biggest in years

Washington County's proposed tax hike is biggest in years

New construction in the east metro county could ease homeowners' burden of 6.9% property tax increase.
New era begins for fabled Lift Bridge in Stillwater, now closed to motorists

New era begins for fabled Lift Bridge in Stillwater, now closed to motorists

The bridge is permanently closed to car traffic, but the bridge will endure as a pedestrian and bicycle path.
Thousands celebrate as new St. Croix River bridge is now open

Thousands celebrate as new St. Croix River bridge is now open

Hours earlier, hundreds of onlookers applaud a four-lane crossing, decades in the making.
Stillwater plans big party when historic Lift Bridge closes to traffic

Stillwater plans big party when historic Lift Bridge closes to traffic

Celebration will combine with classic car show.

Woodbury day cares get extortion letter threatening false police report of sex abuse

Hush money would buy "silence" on false accusation of child sexual assault. Police are investigating.
St. Croix River bridge ribbon-cutting expected to draw a crowd

St. Croix River bridge ribbon-cutting expected to draw a crowd

Buses will ferry spectators to the Wednesday event in Oak Park Heights.
Cottage Grove rescinds summerlong watering ban effective Aug. 1

Cottage Grove rescinds summerlong watering ban effective Aug. 1

The shutdown over contamination ends Tuesday, but restrictions will be in place and enforced.

Grant resident files suit against fellow City Council members

A City Council member in the Washington County city of Grant is suing the mayor and other City Council members, alleging retaliation for his “environmental…

Wisconsin legislator will introduce his second St. Croix River private property bill

Rep. Adam Jarchow takes on Murr land-rights issue despite high court ruling.

Wisconsin legislation seeks to benefit for-profit wedding business on St. Croix River bluff

Wis. legislators offer bills allowing firm on St. Croix to bypass zoning laws.
Afton parades its new look in midst of major infrastructure project

Afton parades its new look in midst of major infrastructure project

The city, and Washington County, teamed up to correct long-standing problems with streets, sewage and flooding.

Dakota, Washington counties approve transportation taxes

The move replaces an existing quarter-cent tax before CTIB dissolves itself.
Lake Elmo rejoins Washington County library system

Lake Elmo rejoins Washington County library system

City had checked out after dispute over services.
Ready? St. Croix River bridge ribbon cutting set for Aug. 2

Ready? St. Croix River bridge ribbon cutting set for Aug. 2

Cars will begin to cross "within a day or two" of the ribbon-cutting, MnDOT official says.
Lifeguards will watch over weekend crowd at Lake Elmo swim pond where drowning occurred

Lifeguards will watch over weekend crowd at Lake Elmo swim pond where drowning occurred

Parents, at Lake Elmo park and elsewhere, warned to be vigilant with children in water.
Booklet about St. Croix River regulations helps landowners go with the flow

Booklet about St. Croix River regulations helps landowners go with the flow

Color guide explains what must be done before investing money in new buildings or remodeling.
Principal found in park died of self-inflicted gunshot wound

Principal found in park died of self-inflicted gunshot wound

An Oakdale school principal found dead in a Woodbury park died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, police said Thursday.
Oakdale middle school principal found dead in Woodbury park

Oakdale middle school principal found dead in Woodbury park

Cause of death under investigation, police say.
Pedestrians are front and center as Stillwater reclaims its core

Pedestrians are front and center as Stillwater reclaims its core

Plaza will replace traffic jams when Stillwater Lift Bridge closes.
Dr. Arnold S. Anderson, who helped found two major Twin Cities medical centers, dies

Dr. Arnold S. Anderson, who helped found two major Twin Cities medical centers, dies

On a July night in 1951, a young doctor was sweeping the floor at the new St. Louis Park Medical Center when parents with a…

Minn. Supreme Court rejects further appeal of Stillwater school closings

Denial means district could proceed with shutdowns if the school board decides to do that.
Forest Lake reverses decision to disband police department

Forest Lake reverses decision to disband police department

The mayor and City Council voted 4-1 in favor of a new three-year contract with the force.
Forest Lake appears to buck trend of closing police departments

Forest Lake appears to buck trend of closing police departments

Outsourcing trend weighs cutting costs, local control.
Cop who played football with kids influenced new Washington County sheriff

Cop who played football with kids influenced new Washington County sheriff

A local officer connected with Washington County's Dan Starry and his brother.
Forest Lake HS students walk out to protest police department disbanding

Forest Lake HS students walk out to protest police department disbanding

More than 1,000 students left the school.
Former Woodbury principal pleads guilty to stealing school money

Former Woodbury principal pleads guilty to stealing school money

Aaron Harper, former head of East Ridge High School, resigned in 2014.
Parents offer settlement to keep Stillwater district schools open

Parents offer settlement to keep Stillwater district schools open

Stillwater attorney hadn't yet responded to proposal to back away from suits.
Trout stocking suspended in Washington Co. lake

Trout stocking suspended in Washington Co. lake

Water clarity was suffering at the Washington County recreational gem.
In Forest Lake, proposal to cut city's police department angers some

In Forest Lake, proposal to cut city's police department angers some

Anger is running high in Forest Lake over a proposal to eliminate the city's police department and contract instead for law enforcement services with the Washington County Sheriff's Office.

Wisconsin girl accused of 'first kill' goes into juvenile jurisdiction

Adult charges dropped for now after deal reached in St. Croix County.
Outdated south Washington County park soon to become new and improved

Outdated south Washington County park soon to become new and improved

A $3.5 million construction project will transform the tattered Cottage Grove site.
Missing police evidence in Newport can't be found, sheriff tells city

Missing police evidence in Newport can't be found, sheriff tells city

Poor procedures blamed for loss of money, drugs and guns; no criminal charges expected.
Bail set at $1M for school bus employee accused of molesting young girls

Bail set at $1M for school bus employee accused of molesting young girls

Harvey Kneifl, charged on six counts, made his first appearance in court Friday.
Woodbury bus assistant suspected of molesting 6 girls

Woodbury bus assistant suspected of molesting 6 girls

The school district has placed the suspect on leave. Allegations involve at least six preschool girls, and police are investigating whether there are more.

Jury awards $11.5 million to assaulted Polk Co., Wis., jail inmates

Female inmates in Wisconsin were assaulted dozens of times by guard.
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