Staff Directory 10645666

Pat Pheifer

Reporter | Metro
phone: 612-673-7252
Pat Pheifer covers the Twin Cities metro area.
Recent content from Pat Pheifer
Janet Veit and her husband, Brian Schumacher, both 48, were avid fly fishers.

La Crescent couple die on Iceland fly fishing vacation

La Crescent couple swept away in lake in Iceland.
Judge Diana Murphy, shown in 1994, when she was appointed to the Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

Diana Murphy, Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals judge, dies at 84

Murphy was a tireless advocate for education, champion for women lawyers and judges and a civic powerhouse.
Valerie Castile said the police officer who shot her son, Philando, had gone through Bulletproof Warrior training.

Dozens protest 'Bulletproof' police training at Mall of America

Foes say it fosters a violent mentality; some agencies no longer send officers to training.

Some law enforcement pull out of controversial 'Bulletproof' training course

"Bulletproof Warrior" came under scrutiny after a police officer fatally shot Philando Castile.
A scene of the crash on Kendrick Avenue at 205th Street, parallel to Interstate 35.

Trooper hurt when car slams into his SUV head-on near Lakeville

Driver lost control of car on I-35, hit trooper's SUV.
The Mosaic Co. is welcomed to the New York Stock Exchange to ring the closing bell in New York in 2004.

Fertilizer giant Mosaic moving its headquarters to Florida

Now based in Plymouth, company officials did not say how many employees would be affected.

Byron woman killed when two cars collide in Olmsted County

A woman and two boys, ages 2 and 3, in the other car were taken to St. Marys Hospital in Rochester.

Blaine school bus driver accused of texting while driving, looking up jokes on her phone

Charges say she also talked about her personal life and gave students "an inappropriate life lesson."

One dead in 'domestic disturbance' in Garfield, Minn.

The dead person was one of four people in the home at the time of the shooting, authorities said.
Lucifer Nguyen

Man pleads guilty to murder and crime spree that terrorized Mendota Heights residents

As part of the plea, Lucifer Nguyen will spend a minimum of 30 years in prison.
Kelly D.Holstine, an English teacher at Tokata Learning Center, an alternative high school in Shakopee, was named the Minnesota's 2018 Teacher of the

Minnesota's teacher of the year wants to show that 'every kid matters'

Holstine was named Minnesota's 2018 Teacher of the Year on Sunday and recalled the fifth-grade teacher who helped turn her life around.
Police investigated the shooting that sent six people to the hospital Wednesday in Minneapolis.

6 shot at Little Earth housing complex in Minneapolis

One of the victims was a juvenile. All went to HCMC, and their injuries were not life-threatening.
In this file photo, a drill rig digging for Twin Metals was working in the woods near Ely, Minn.

Interior Department renews leases for Twin Metals mine project

The possibility of copper-nickel mining near the Boundary Waters Canoe Area Wilderness and Voyageurs National Park moved an incremental step closer to reality.
K’dion Williams

Missing 9-year-old boy in north Minneapolis found safe

A missing 9-year-old boy was found safe Tuesday night in north Minneapolis. K’dion Williams had been last seen about 2:30 p.m. Tuesday at Nellie Stone…
The Hennepin Downtown Project will reconstruct Hennepin Avenue between Washington Avenue and 12th Street starting in 2019, according to the city.

Designs for lengthy Hennepin Avenue reconstruction take shape

The $20 million reconstruction project will be underway for four years.
A small fire broke out late Saturday at this downtown Minneapolis post office.

Late-night fire closes Loring Station post office in downtown Minneapolis

Station will be closed during repairs.

Minneapolis' Earth Day Clean Up is postponed until May 12

With temperatures still a dozen degrees below normal and several inches of snow still blanketing the ground, the Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board has postponed…

Eagan foster mom, boyfriend charged in death of 3-year-old boy

The criminal complaints detail gruesome injuries to the 3-year-old child.
File photo: A Sun Country flight at the gate at Terminal 2 during a winter storm.

Sun Country passengers irate after airline leaves them in Mexico, citing end of season

Airline issuing refunds but says it can't divert flights.
Holocaust survivors Renate Esquivel, center, and Reva Kibort, right, were accompanied by their granddaughters, Anna McCallum and Gracie Kibort, Thursd

'Memory keepers' gather in St. Paul to honor those lost to the Holocaust

More than 600 attended a Holocaust remembrance service at Mount Zion.

Mark Haase challenging Mike Freeman for Hennepin County attorney's job

Mark Haase says it's time for innovation in criminal justice system.
Allison Feldman

Man arrested in murder of former Minnesota woman in Arizona

Police said they "never stopped investigating" Allison Feldman's murder.
Many Minnesotans would agree with this message board in Windber, Pa., Monday. (Todd Berkey/The Tribune-Democrat via AP)

Cold and snow wreaking havoc with spring sports schedules

Despite temperatures in the mid-30s, the golf balls flew as students from Benilde-St. Margaret's gathered Monday afternoon for boys' golf team practice."Just set up every…
First Lutheran Church on St. Paul's East Side

St. Paul church says its First Amendment rights are at stake, sues city

First Lutheran says its First Amendment rights are being violated with restrictions on how it can help the poor.
Neighborhood residents, including Marylee Woods, gesturing, and her husband, Larry Woods, standing behind her, discussed the plans on display before t

Minnehaha Academy neighbors angry they didn't have part in rebuild

School officials and representatives of the firms that will build and design the new facility held a community meeting and open house at the school's elementary and middle-school campus Wednesday.
FILE - In this 1960 file photo, Martin Luther King Jr. speaks in Atlanta. The civil rights leader had carried the banner for the causes of social just

Minnesotans discuss King's 'Mountaintop' speech

On the eve of Martin Luther King’s death and the anniversary of the day he delivered his “I’ve been to the mountaintop” speech in Memphis,…
Traffic in the Twin Cities was slowed by snowfall in this file photo.

Twin Cities roads slippery as snow expected to fall much of the day

The Minnesota Department of Transportation reported more than 25 crashes on state and interstate highways — just in the metro area between 8 p.m. and 8:15 p.m. Monday.

Alleged dealer charged with murder after OD death of Carver County woman

A young woman from Watertown, Minn., died last week of a fentanyl overdose and a 29-year-old man who allegedly supplied her with the drug has been arrested.
Weisman Museum

A police cat, straightened out Weisman and water 'flights' for dogs? Chalk it up to April Fools' Day

Would you believe a police cat or poolside view of planes landing?
Sen. Tina Smith, D-Minn., listened to Paul Skrbec, 47, of Minneapolis, and others talk about the high price of prescription medications.

Smith's first bill as senator aims to cut high drug costs, close loophole

In her first piece of stand-alone legislation, Sen. Tina Smith has introduced a bill to close a loophole that allows major drug companies to "pay to delay" bringing more affordable generic drugs to market.
The bodies of Gloria and Willie Scheel were found in their Toyota Prius in Kandiyohi County, officials said. The Paynesville, Minn., couple were repor

Missing elderly Paynesville couple found dead in vehicle

The couple's adult grandson, who lived with them, was taken into custody in Kandiyohi County.

Rosemount woman sentenced for stealing from Eastview High School party fund

Jill Lynn Fiedler, 38, received 90 days in jail and five years of probation after she stole the $8,727.
A crowd of nearly 100 people listened Tuesday night to speakers at a vigil after charges were filed against a former Minneapolis police officer in the

Cries of 'justice for all' at vigil for Justine Damond

About 75 community activists and residents of the neighborhood gathered to say their fight is not over.
The Minneapolis City skyline including City Hall seen from U.S. District Court.

Report calling Minneapolis third-most expensive U.S. city leaves out house prices

The Economist magazine says only New York and Los Angeles are more expensive.
Cambridge-Isanti schools were closed Wednesday and all after-school activities and events were canceled as authorities and district officials investig

Threat that closed Cambridge-Isanti schools was false alarm

The district said decision was made out of abundance of caution.

Man hit by car in Uptown Minneapolis has 'very significant injuries'

The driver of the car, trying to turn onto Lagoon from James Avenue S., is cooperating with police.
Students were evacuated from Patrick Henry High School after a gunman was reported getting off a Metro Transit bus near the school Tuesday.

Patrick Henry High was locked down after report of gunman inside

A person with a gun was seen stepping off a city bus nearby.The suspect was seen on surveillance video leaving the school and remained at large. No one was arrested.

Woman who died in St. Cloud fire is ID'd

Authorities said the fire was started by a cigarette.
St. Anthony Police Chief Jon Mangseth, shown at a City Council meeting in 2017.

Feds' work with St. Anthony police will continue, but differently

Federal help, which was prompted by a fatal 2016 shooting, will run through August.
Orono Police Chief Correy Farniok said a student was arrested at the high school Wednesday after a threat of gun violence that came from the school. A

Student arrested in Orono schools threat that prompted lockdown

An online threat had students barricaded in their classrooms for hours, with desks and chairs blocking the doors.

Fareway chicken salad may be contaminated with salmonella

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has warned people who bought deli chicken salad at any of the six Fareway Foods grocery stores in southern Minnesota…
Scott Spoo

Victim's attorney decries lack of charges against driver in fatal St. Paul crash

Lawyer for driver, who has been found to have brain cancer, has sharp response.
Wild Onion exterior

St. Paul's Wild Onion closing; space to become a Red Rabbit restaurant

The timing was right as Italian-themed restaurant sought a second location.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar addresses the public about the flu during a news conference at Fairview Southdale Hospital on Sunday, Feb. 11, 2018 in Edina. Klobu

Klobuchar seeks more resources to fight flu amid deadly outbreak

So far in Minnesota this flu season, more than 3,800 influenza-related hospitalizations have been reported, and the season is only half over, Klobuchar said. For the entire previous flu season, the total was 3,700.
Guests of Como Zoo watched as Buzz, one of the facility's twin polar bears, played in his pool this summer.

St. Paul's Como Zoo schedules dates to accommodate visitors with autism and sensory disabilities

Early-open dates will allow people with autism to visit before the doors open to the general public.
The vehicle with the blown-out back window was being investigated Tuesday night by police in Brooklyn Center after gunfire was reported.

Police: Man who fired shots from car in Brooklyn Center shot self

Police said the man was hospitalized in critical condition.

Latvian computer hacker who targeted startribune.com pleads guilty

He admitted making up to $250,000 in the scam.
Faith leaders gathered Thursday in Bloomington to announce a campaign against Islamophobia.

Interfaith event at Bloomington mosque decries anti-Muslim rhetoric

They urged everyone to participate fully in political process.
Tthe family of Alan Geisenkoetter Jr., the 8-year-old boy struck last week by an allegedly drunken snowmobiler, said that he has died.

8-year-old boy hit by snowmobiler on Chisago Lake dies

Alan Geisenkoetter, 8, "got his angel wings today," his mother said.

Man killed in officer-involved shooting in St. James

A man who fled authorities in a stolen vehicle was killed Wednesday afternoon in an officer-involved shooting in St. James, Minn., about two hours southwest…

Alexandria's second fire in 10 days brings death toll to 3

A 19-year-old woman died Monday in an apartment fire in Alexandria, Minn., just 10 days after another fire at a mobile home killed two people in the Douglas County city of 13,500 people.

Investigated Minnesota priest returned to limited ministry

The Rev. Jonathan Shelley was removed from active ministry in 2012 after sexually explicit images were found on a discarded computer.
Project REACH will use the funds contributed to its emergency initiative directly to ensure the families being relocated have what they need to stay s

Homeless families with kids in St. Paul schools won't be out in the cold during Super Bowl

Those losing motel rooms will be sheltered elsewhere, though not in schools buildings.

Court of Appeals admonishes Minnesota Teaching Board in license denial

'Appearance of impropriety' cited in panel's treatment of applicant.

Appeals Court sides with city of Burnsville over mobile home park inspections

City has changed rules for mobile home parks, but said ruling was a victory.
A media event Sunday drew 200 people including, from left, U.S. Rep. Keith Ellison, Natalia Marchan, U.S. Sen. Tina Smith and Angelica Bello Ayapantec

Keith Ellison, Tina Smith press case for state's DACA recipients

As congressional deadline on DACA program nears, activists push for solution for young immigrants.
DWI arrests were up in Minnesota in 2017, from 23,392 in 2016 to 25,190 last year.

Minnesota traffic deaths in 2017 were the lowest since 1943

State credits 2017's total to better driving habits. DWI arrests for the year increased somewhat.
“Who wouldn’t want to build an igloo over winter break?”
Tom Zirps of Minneapolis, whose family has been involved from the start

Igloo rises while temperatures fall in Minneapolis front yard

The below-zero cold doesn't matter much when there's a colorful ice-block igloo to be built in the neighborhood. At least it's not too warm.Martha Palm,…
Mallards take flight over the frigid waters below the Rum River Dam Tuesday, Dec. 26, 2017, in Anoka, Minn.

Shelters work overtime to protect homeless from dangerous Minnesota cold

After a slight warmup Thursday, weekend high temperatures will be below zero.
Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman

Freeman defends time being taken on Damond death investigation

"There is good reason to take real care in our review," the Hennepin County attorney said in a statement.
Along with his family, John Ruszcyk, second left, demanded Thursday in Sydney, Australia, a more rigorous probe into the fatal shooting of his daughte

Justine Damond's father 'deeply concerned' about work of BCA

In Australia, John Ruszczyk had some biting words about the "integrity" of the state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension and the "gaps" in its investigation.
Jose Hernandez Solano

Cyclists remember man killed in hit-and-run as police announce arrests

Dozens of cyclists turned out to remember a St. Paul restaurant worker killed in a hit-and-run crash.
Garrison Keillor sang during the live 2016 broadcast of "A Prairie Home Companion" at the State Theatre in Minneapolis.

CEO: 'Multiple allegations' were made over long time period against Keillor

American Public Media CEO's comments came in a closed staff meeting, according to report.
University of Minnesota police are investigating an “incident” involving a dead person at the Mechanical Engineering building on the East Bank cam

University of Minnesota police investigating dead body on campus

The investigation was taking place at the Mechanical Engineering building on the East Bank campus in Minneapolis.
Mike Loeffler took Pan, his 9-year-old Husky mix, for a walk Monday across I-35 south of downtown Minneapolis; temperatures were in the mid-50s.

After record high, Twin Cities headed into the freezer

Snow and winds of 25 to 30 mph are in the forecast early Monday evening, possibly during the rush hour.
File photo shows Diamond Reynolds at the June trial in St. Paul of Police officer Jeronimo Yanez in connection with the fatal shooting of her boyfrien

Settlement for Castile's girlfriend Diamond Reynolds will be $800K

St. Anthony City Council voted 4-0 to settle with Diamond Reynolds for $675,000 while Reynolds will receive another $125,000 from the League of Minnesota Cities Insurance Trust and the city of Roseville, making the total settlement $800,000.
Dog walker finds body in park south of Lake Nokomis; no ID

Dog walker finds body in park south of Lake Nokomis; no ID

The body was partly covered, apparently by another person — with more than just leaves, debris and branches that could have fallen on it, police said.
Protesters "take a knee" before start of Vikings game

Protesters "take a knee" before start of Vikings game

The "Take a Knee" protesters were at U.S. Bank Stadium again Sunday before the start of the Vikings-Rams game, carrying signs and making impassioned speeches.
On Super Bowl Sunday, Blue Line light-rail trains between Mall of America and downtown Minneapolis will be restricted to those who have tickets to the

Super Bowl will limit light-rail use to ticket holders on game day

Only ticket holders for the game can board on game day; all others must ride buses.
A stabbing was reported at Mall of America on Sunday night.

'Interrupted theft' led to stabbings at Macy's in MOA

Police arrested a man they believe stabbed two other men who tried to stop him from stealing. He was held by other shoppers after the assault, police said.

Search continues for two fishermen on Lower Red Lake

No progress was made Thursday in the search for two fishermen who have been missing since Monday on Lower Red Lake in northern Minnesota. Ground…
Valerie Castile, John Thompson and Ramsey County Attorney John Choi talked at a meeting about community policing on Wednesday night.

At police-community forum, Philando Castile's mother says nightmare hasn't ended

Talk on police-community relations that includes the top Twin Cities prosecutors focused on loss of trust in police and courts.
Roger Erickson, right, is shown with his longtime WCCO Radio partner Charlie Boone in 1992.

WCCO Radio legend Roger Erickson made mornings, snow days a joy

For generations of Minnesotans, Roger Erickson was the first voice they heard in the morning.The WCCO-AM radio legend, along with his co-host Charlie Boone, were…

St. Paul school cafeteria workers OK two-year contract

Pact in St. Paul increases wages 2 percent each year.
Hwy. 53 near Duluth and Hermantown was covered in snow this morning, as this image taken at 6:23 a.m. by a MnDOT snow plow camera shows.

Ready, set, snow: Slush likely to slow morning commute

The metro area and much more of Minnesota should see 1 to 4 inches, according to the National Weather Service.
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