Tot missing from Elk River campground

Searchers were looking for a 2-year-old girl missing from a campground on the Elk River on Friday night.

Searchers were on the ground, as well as on boats on the river next to Wapiti Park, a private campground in Elk River, the Sherburne County Sheriff's Department said.

The tot was last seen about 8 p.m., a sheriff's dispatcher said. The park is located just off Hwy. 10.

Juanita Glenn, manager of the small campground, said she received a call that a 2-year-old was missing just before dark. "Everybody started looking immediately, and even before the police got here," she said.

The tot was the youngest of three children who had come to the campground with two women and a man, Glenn said.

Joy Powell

Dakota County pot bust yields charges

A St. Paul man has been charged in Dakota County District Court with felony drug crimes in connection with an almost 57-pound marijuana bust in April near Inver Grove Heights.

According to the criminal complaint, authorities in Chicago discovered on April 10 that five boxes in a shipment bound for Eagan contained a total of 56.8 pounds of marijuana. On the afternoon of April 15, Cher Yang arrived at the shipping company in Eagan with a pickup truck and a second vehicle, signed for the boxes and loaded them into the two vehicles. The five containing drugs were put into Yang's vehicle.

County Attorney Jim Backstrom said the marijuana had a street value of $171,000 to $342,000.

Yang is free on bail; his next court appearance is Aug. 5.


Man charged in drunken-driving death

A man from rural Dakota County has been charged with criminal vehicular homicide in connection with an alcohol-fueled crash last November that killed a passenger in his truck.

A warrant has been issued for the arrest of Keri J. Gesme, 27, of Hampton Township, the county attorney's office said. According to the criminal complaint, Gesme crashed shortly after pulling out of his driveway about 2:40 p.m. Nov. 8. Family members told officers he had been drinking since 9 a.m.

Both Gesme and his passenger, Dennis P. Underwood, 27, of Cannon Falls, Minn., were thrown from the truck. Underwood died at the scene; Gesme was badly injured. A blood sample taken from Gesme more than two hours later showed his alcohol content to be 0.2 percent.

The State Patrol said Gesme's truck was going 83 to 106 miles per hour when it went airborne and hit at least one tree. Underwood died from hitting a tree, authorities said.

Pat Pheifer