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Randy Furst

Reporter | Minneapolis
phone: 612-673-4224
Randy Furst is a general assignment reporter covering Minneapolis for the Star Tribune.
Recent content from Randy Furst
Minneapolis City Council unanimously revokes landlord's rental licenses

Minneapolis City Council unanimously revokes landlord's rental licenses

The Minneapolis City Council unanimously revoked 60 rental licenses belonging to landlord Steve Frenz on Friday, culminating a two-year saga that began when low-income…
Homelessness in Minnesota jumped 4.5 percent in 2017, HUD reports

Homelessness in Minnesota jumped 4.5 percent in 2017, HUD reports

The 4.5 percent jump from 2016 to 2017 still puts the total below 2010 levels.
Ventura settles defamation lawsuit but won't say for how much

Ventura settles defamation lawsuit but won't say for how much

"Apology is in the bank," former governor says.
More residents using Minnetonka food shelf

More residents using Minnetonka food shelf

Many in the western suburbs can't stretch their limited earnings enough to get by.
Jesse Ventura appears to have settled defamation lawsuit over book

Jesse Ventura appears to have settled defamation lawsuit over book

Minnesota's former governor declined to comment on Friday about the apparent settlement of his defamation suit.
Crash, loss of legs forced two friends to rebuild their lives — again

Crash, loss of legs forced two friends to rebuild their lives — again

After fleeing a war-torn country, living in refugee camps and starting new lives in the United States, the two Bloomington men now face a new ordeal.
David Nasby, General Mills philanthropy leader, dies at 78

David Nasby, General Mills philanthropy leader, dies at 78

David Nasby committed his life to helping the less fortunate — from his days as the head of a small alternative school in south Minneapolis…
Minneapolis denies rental licenses for 16 apartment buildings

Minneapolis denies rental licenses for 16 apartment buildings

The city is refusing to grant rental licenses for buildings Steve Frenz sold, saying he did not give up his ownership, leaving hundreds in limbo.
U.S. Supreme Court ends embattled Minneapolis landlord Mahmood Khan's appeals process

U.S. Supreme Court ends embattled Minneapolis landlord Mahmood Khan's appeals process

U.S. Supreme Court action allows Minneapolis to strip landlord's licenses.
Did Russian hackers organize Castile protest? Activists say no

Did Russian hackers organize Castile protest? Activists say no

Twin Cities activists discouraged people from attending a July 2016 rally organized by a Facebook group called "Don't Shoot," after the event description raised red flags.
New director of ACLU of Minnesota has been Mpls. lawyer for 40 years

New director of ACLU of Minnesota has been Mpls. lawyer for 40 years

John Gordon was chosen from 140 candidates to lead state civil liberties group.
Gov. Dayton's law enforcement commission comes under fire

Gov. Dayton's law enforcement commission comes under fire

The report ranges from training methods to transparency.
Angry renters demonstrate outside landlord Stephen Frenz's home

Angry renters demonstrate outside landlord Stephen Frenz's home

Renters demonstrate in Minneapolis and St. Paul over issues of gentrification and housing deterioration this week.
Landlord kept control of Mpls. apartments after he was banned

Landlord kept control of Mpls. apartments after he was banned

Major landlord Spiros Zorbalas continued to have majority ownership and controls of apartment complexes, documents show.
With too many homeless, too few beds, Mpls. policy debated

With too many homeless, too few beds, Mpls. policy debated

A $400,000 federal grant offered to Minneapolis is at the heart of a debate over the best way to help the city's homeless.
Embattled landlord files defiant affidavit in Mpls. case

Embattled landlord files defiant affidavit in Mpls. case

Landlord mogul Spiros Zorbalas, who was banned by the Minneapolis City Council from renting property in the city for five years, has filed a defiant affidavit saying he has every right to co-own apartment buildings with Stephen Frenz.
Collection and disposal of old, unused medicines in Hennepin County mushrooms

Collection and disposal of old, unused medicines in Hennepin County mushrooms

Hennepin County effort has collected 100,000 pounds of expired and unused drugs.
Landlord Stephen Frenz sells off his apartment buildings, but lawsuit seeks to block him

Landlord Stephen Frenz sells off his apartment buildings, but lawsuit seeks to block him

Tenants say it clears him of what 'they are due.'
Massive project works to uncover racist restrictions in Mpls. housing deeds

Massive project works to uncover racist restrictions in Mpls. housing deeds

As many as 10,000 or more Minneapolis homeowners have property deeds with so-called "racial covenants." A team of University of Minnesota researchers is determined to find them all.
'I was terrified,' said renter struck by bricks at Mpls. apartment facade collapse

'I was terrified,' said renter struck by bricks at Mpls. apartment facade collapse

Minneapolis resident woke up to a crash as part of an apartment facade collapsed.
3-story Mpls. apartment building evacuated after brick facade falls

3-story Mpls. apartment building evacuated after brick facade falls

The Elliot Park building is owned by Stephen Frenz, an apartment owner who faces revocation of all his rental licenses.
Minnesota company sells camera that police can put on gun

Minnesota company sells camera that police can put on gun

Maple Plain manufacturer makes a small device that records a gun's movements; several departments have offered to try them out.
Obituary: Marianne Hamilton dedicated her life to the antiwar movement

Obituary: Marianne Hamilton dedicated her life to the antiwar movement

Hamilton traveled to some of the world's hot spots, including Hanoi during the Vietnam War, to advocate for peace while also working at home.
Former Minneapolis Star editor Leonard 'Lee' Canning dies at 87

Former Minneapolis Star editor Leonard 'Lee' Canning dies at 87

Canning presided over the newsroom at the Minneapolis Star, the afternoon newspaper that would merge with the morning Tribune in 1982.
Millions at stake in class-action lawsuit against 2 Mpls. landlords

Millions at stake in class-action lawsuit against 2 Mpls. landlords

A rare class-action lawsuit against two Minneapolis landlords could cost them millions of dollars and benefit thousands of low-income tenants if they prevail.
Training course still in works 8 years after Gang Strike Force ends

Training course still in works 8 years after Gang Strike Force ends

Eight years after the scandal-ridden Metro Gang Strike Force was shut down, a law enforcement training course mandated as part of a settlement with victims has cost hundreds of thousands of dollars and is still in development — with no firm date of completion.
Family of five evicted as affordable housing crisis worsens in Minneapolis

Family of five evicted as affordable housing crisis worsens in Minneapolis

"It's really so mean and unjust," says Jose Lopez, whose family is being evicted from an apartment in the Whittier neighborhood where he's lived for 23 years. "How can someone come in and buy the building, and we have to leave in 30 days?"
911 calls provide a glimpse into Justine Damond's final moments

911 calls provide a glimpse into Justine Damond's final moments

Justine Damond spent her last moments trying to help a stranger, according to a 911 transcript. Soon afterward, a responding Minneapolis officer, Mohamed Noor, fired his gun from inside a patrol vehicle and killed her.
Gov. Dayton: Justine Damond shooting a tragedy, more information needed

Gov. Dayton: Justine Damond shooting a tragedy, more information needed

He declined to draw parallels between it and other police shootings.
Southwest Minneapolis residents shocked by fatal police shooting

Southwest Minneapolis residents shocked by fatal police shooting

This is a place where neighbors help each other find lost pets. It’s where tidy yards are filled with flower beds and children pedal their…
Trauma counseling in wake of Yanez acquittal available in Minneapolis

Trauma counseling in wake of Yanez acquittal available in Minneapolis

Walk-in counseling and listening sessions are being set up in Minneapolis on both the north and south sides for people coping with trauma after the…
Yanez verdict is only widening the police, community divide

Yanez verdict is only widening the police, community divide

Activists and police say the case's outcome adds to longstanding tensions.
At Mpls. peace summit, Stevie Wonder joins plea to end street violence

At Mpls. peace summit, Stevie Wonder joins plea to end street violence

Young people mired in poverty need help to build more peaceful lives, attendees said.
Judge orders new defamation trial for man cleared in Cold Spring cop killing

Judge orders new defamation trial for man cleared in Cold Spring cop killing

Judge rules that news media aired false statements and a jury must consider that in Cold Spring defamation case.
$11M jury award upheld in St. Paul Toyota crash that killed 3

$11M jury award upheld in St. Paul Toyota crash that killed 3

The appeals panel said a jury had sufficient evidence to find Toyota 60 percent at fault in 2006 fatal crash the led to the imprisonment of Koua Fong Lee.
Workers press for union at three Seward Co-op facilities in Minneapolis

Workers press for union at three Seward Co-op facilities in Minneapolis

Managers deny the claim and say they'll work toward holding election.
Jesse Ventura has a new gig — on Russian television

Jesse Ventura has a new gig — on Russian television

Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura says he is now working for "the enemy of mainstream media."
Activists plan Minneapolis peace summit with Stevie Wonder as speaker in hopes of quelling violence

Activists plan Minneapolis peace summit with Stevie Wonder as speaker in hopes of quelling violence

Sharif Willis, a Vice Lords leader, is back from prison, playing role in parley to be held in June.
8 counterdemonstrators charged in scuffles at pro-Trump rally in St. Paul

8 counterdemonstrators charged in scuffles at pro-Trump rally in St. Paul

Ramsey County attorney said the right to assemble peacefully was at stake.
Housing court orders Mpls. landlord Stephen Frenz to return $27,813 to tenants

Housing court orders Mpls. landlord Stephen Frenz to return $27,813 to tenants

It is believed to be the largest rent abatement for multiple tenants in the 27-year history of housing courts in Minnesota.
Hennepin County Board approves Diversion Solutions to run its diversion program

Hennepin County Board approves Diversion Solutions to run its diversion program

Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said his office will closely watch the company.
Data shows driver's license reinstatement program is less successful than company claims

Data shows driver's license reinstatement program is less successful than company claims

Relicensing firm's successes don't seem to match its claims, documents show.
Paul Ridgeway, who orchestrated high-profile political events, dies at 68

Paul Ridgeway, who orchestrated high-profile political events, dies at 68

He helped coordinate then-Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev's visit to the Twin Cities in 1990.
Tenants rally outside Minneapolis landlord's office demanding rent freeze, repairs

Tenants rally outside Minneapolis landlord's office demanding rent freeze, repairs

Some 75 protesters, most of them tenants, rallied in the rain outside the offices of Minneapolis landlord Stephen Frenz on Monday in a demand for…
Contractor hired by Hennepin County attorney linked to past sanctions

Contractor hired by Hennepin County attorney linked to past sanctions

Company that would aid offenders in Hennepin County was accused of unscrupulous behavior by attorney general's office.
Jail sentence delayed for Minneapolis landlord Stephen Frenz

Jail sentence delayed for Minneapolis landlord Stephen Frenz

A landlord who has been in a heap of trouble won't have to go to jail if he continues to cooperate, a housing court referee rules.
Obituary: Minneapolis pacifist went to prison three times for his beliefs

Obituary: Minneapolis pacifist went to prison three times for his beliefs

Orin Doty came from an antiwar family, and he lived his principles. He went to prison three times: twice for opposing the draft and refusing…

Hennepin County Board argues over cutting ties with Operation de Novo

The debate over the future of adult diversion programs for first-time felony criminal offenders in Hennepin County heated up on Friday.Three members of the Hennepin…
Hennepin County to terminate diversion program contract with Operation de Novo

Hennepin County to terminate diversion program contract with Operation de Novo

The move likely will force Operation de Novo to shut down permanently, after 46 years of offering programs for offenders to complete to avoid a criminal charge or get it dismissed.
After Mpls. mom is swindled out of new garage, volunteers step in to help

After Mpls. mom is swindled out of new garage, volunteers step in to help

After a fire, Tawanda Miller, who had only partial insurance, was the victim of a construction swindle by a phony contractor who took about $6,600 from her as a partial payment to rebuild the garage, then disappeared.
Controversial Mpls. landlord ordered to jail for contempt of court

Controversial Mpls. landlord ordered to jail for contempt of court

In a rare order, a housing court referee cites landlord Stephen Frenz for contempt for refusing to turn over key documents in court case.
Former Mpls. cop charged with felony assault appears in court

Former Mpls. cop charged with felony assault appears in court

Christopher Reiter was briefly jailed one day after he was charged with felony assault for kicking a domestic assault suspect in the face.
Some Mpls. apartment buildings get top rating despite code violations

Some Mpls. apartment buildings get top rating despite code violations

Review finds troubled Mpls. properties are rated too high, meaning less scrutiny.
Jesse Ventura and Chris Kyle estate fighting over $37,000 legal bill

Jesse Ventura and Chris Kyle estate fighting over $37,000 legal bill

Dispute over $37,000 in legal fees is latest twist in long-running defamation case.
Minnesota labor leader Dave Roe dies at 92

Minnesota labor leader Dave Roe dies at 92

Roe was president of the Minnesota AFL-CIO from 1966 to 1984.
Japanese-American woman who spent 3 years in internment camp dies at 92

Japanese-American woman who spent 3 years in internment camp dies at 92

There was no bitterness in Helen Tsuchiya's voice when she spoke of having spent more than three years as a teenager in a Japanese-American internment…
Health issues force a change atop ACLU Minnesota

Health issues force a change atop ACLU Minnesota

After 20 years at the helm, Chuck Samuelson will tell stakeholders Thursday he's retiring as executive director, effective Feb. 28.
A doctor who gave her all to the American Indian community retires

A doctor who gave her all to the American Indian community retires

Retiring Dr. Lydia Caros has been the pediatrician to generations of children in Minneapolis.
Mpls. landlord hit with largest fine in housing court history

Mpls. landlord hit with largest fine in housing court history

Stephen Frenz, one of the city's biggest landlords, must pay a record $187,390 fine for deceiving Hennepin housing court.
Bill to crack down on Minn. protesters appears to be national trend

Bill to crack down on Minn. protesters appears to be national trend

'Shame, shame!' demonstrators chanted after the bill passed 6-3.
About 2,000 protesters converge in downtown Mpls. to protest Trump

About 2,000 protesters converge in downtown Mpls. to protest Trump

Protesters criticized the new president's views on immigration, climate change and women's rights.
Activists gear up for anti-Trump marches in Twin Cities

Activists gear up for anti-Trump marches in Twin Cities

Rallies and marches are planned in Twin Cities on Friday and Saturday.
Larry Leventhal, attorney who championed Indian rights, dies at 75

Larry Leventhal, attorney who championed Indian rights, dies at 75

For more than 40 years, he traveled the country representing Indian tribes and activists in battles over water, land, fishing and hunting rights.
With riot charges dropped, some Castile protesters vow to take remaining counts to trial

With riot charges dropped, some Castile protesters vow to take remaining counts to trial

Many demonstrators in Castile protests won't accept plea deals, but St. Paul says it's being reasonable.
Riot charges thrown out against Castile protesters on I-94 in July

Riot charges thrown out against Castile protesters on I-94 in July

Being present at the protest does not constitute active rioting, Judge G. Tony Atwal ruled for 38 people charged with gross misdemeanor riot. They may still face lesser charges.
From 'bawdy houses' to 'boys with matches,' a wealth of history in Mpls. clock tower

From 'bawdy houses' to 'boys with matches,' a wealth of history in Mpls. clock tower

Minneapolis City Hall's clock tower holds a treasure trove of records.

Jan. 10: Ventura loses appeal to reinstate $1.8 million defamation verdict, vows retrial

After the U.S. Supreme Court declined Monday to hear his appeal, former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura said he was looking forward to a new trial…
A fire, then a scam, leaves Minneapolis homeowner without a garage

A fire, then a scam, leaves Minneapolis homeowner without a garage

Unlicensed scam artists took advantage of Mpls. woman who was trying to economize.
Hennepin History Museum exhibit puts local politics on display

Hennepin History Museum exhibit puts local politics on display

For political junkies who have not yet overdosed on the 2016 elections, there’s a fun little nonpartisan exhibit on display at the Hennepin History Museum…
Minneapolis renters' group puts landlords on notice

Minneapolis renters' group puts landlords on notice

"You have to make noise to get landlords to listen," tenant organizer says.
U professors criticize bowl boycott threat, Gophers coach

U professors criticize bowl boycott threat, Gophers coach

The professors, speaking at a public forum, said it was a "terrible thing" that Gophers coach Tracy Claeys tweeted his support for the players' boycott threat.
Toyota appeals $10.9M verdict in fatal St. Paul car crash

Toyota appeals $10.9M verdict in fatal St. Paul car crash

A jury awarded victims of a 2006 crash $10.9 million, but Toyota claims some testimony should have been barred.
Miles Lord, a pivotal judge in Minnesota history, dies at 97

Miles Lord, a pivotal judge in Minnesota history, dies at 97

Miles W. Lord, a former federal judge whose withering criticism of corporate abuses and forceful rulings in favor of women, minorities, workers and consumers, antiwar protesters and the environment gained him a national reputation, died Saturday.
Obituary: Meteorologist John Graff kept Minnesotans informed of the weather

Obituary: Meteorologist John Graff kept Minnesotans informed of the weather

In a state that endures and celebrates its weather extremes, John Graff was the voice of authority, detailing the imminent dangers, telling Minnesotans when it…
Renters caught in middle as cities spend years battling landlords to fix problem properties

Renters caught in middle as cities spend years battling landlords to fix problem properties

While the Stephen Frenz case has taken extra twists and turns, even more straightforward license revocations can lead to a lengthy process for city regulators.
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