A St. Paul police officer was recovering Saturday after being shot in the face with an air rifle Friday while he and another officer performed a welfare check on a man at a home in St. Paul’s North End.

Michael Talley, an 18-year veteran of the force, and Melissa Leistikow, a new recruit, went to the home on Lyton Place near the Oakland Cemetery in response to a call about 2 p.m.

When the man came out with a knife in his hand, the officers were forced to retreat, police spokesman Sgt. Paul Paulos said.

The man then went back into the house and fired something that hit Talley in the cheek, Paulos said. Initially, police weren’t sure if the man fired a pellet gun or a standard gun. After shooting, the suspect barricaded himself in the house.

On Saturday morning, police announced that the weapon used was a Benjamin Trail XL .25-caliber air rifle (also known as a pellet gun) with a scope.

After negotiating with police, the man surrendered without incident around 4:30 p.m., Paulos said. He is being held at the Ramsey County jail.

Talley was being treated for noncritical injuries at Regions Hospital. Saturday morning, Talley was reportedly doing “well.”

The incident “tells you what kind of job we do every day,” Paulos said. “It’s very dangerous, it’s annoying and, ultimately, we can maybe even lose a guy.”



Couple win $1 million with $10 lottery ticket

It’s a happy start to the new year for Minnesota Lottery raffle winners Alan and Patricia Potter, a Waterville couple who pocketed $1 million.

The couple stepped forward Friday with one of two $1 million winning tickets. The other jackpot-winning ticket was sold in Anoka County, and that holder has until this time next year to claim the prize money.

Alan Potter is a pest control technician; Patricia Potter is a registered nurse. The southern Minnesota couple said they intend to keep those jobs, but that retirement could come sooner than they had planned.

The Potters have bought the New Year’s raffle tickets every year since the game started in 2006.

A ticket for the new year’s lottery raffle game costs $10.

The odds of winning the $1 million prize were 1 in 350,000, according to the Minnesota Lottery.



City’s first Polar Plunge is set for Valentine’s Day

Registration has opened for the first Woodbury Polar Plunge, a Valentine’s Day event at Carver Lake Beach.

The “Freezin’ for a Reason” plunge is one of several that raise money for Special Olympics Minnesota and the more than 8,000 athletes who compete. Participants can enter as individuals or as a group by registering online at www.plungemn.org.

The Woodbury plunge begins at 1 p.m. on Feb. 14 at Carver Lake, 3175 Century Av. S. A precheck-in will be held Feb. 13 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the plunge site or on the day of the plunge.

The metro area’s first Polar Plunge took place at Como Lake in St. Paul and soon expanded to more than 20 locations in Minnesota, this year from Jan. 31 to March 21.

The events are organized by Minnesota law enforcement officers.

Sunday is the last day for an informational campaign in the Macy’s plaza at the Mall of America to drive registration at Plunge events.



Citizens sought for board on light-rail station

The Brooklyn Park City Council is looking for applications from community members to serve on a community working group focused on the Brooklyn Boulevard light-rail station, which will be part of the Bottineau Light Rail project.

Construction on the Bottineau line is expected to begin in 2017, and there is a proposed stop at West Broadway and Brooklyn Boulevard.

The application form and more information can be found at www.brooklynpark.org/light-rail.

compiled from STAFF REPORTS