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Jeffrey Meitrodt

Reporter | Investigations
Phone: 612-673-4132

Jeffrey Meitrodt is an investigative reporter for the Star Tribune who specializes in stories involving the collision of business and government regulation. 

Previously, Meitrodt was an investigative reporter for the New Orleans Times-Picayune. He also covered the Illinois statehouse for the Chicago Tribune. He grew up in southeastern Minnesota and graduated in 1984 from the University of Minnesota with a degree in journalism. He has won national journalism awards for his reporting on public corruption in Louisiana and Illinois, and for his coverage of corporate misconduct and educational disparities in Minnesota.
Recent content from Jeffrey Meitrodt
Susan Humiston, director of the Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility, testifies at the Minnesota Supreme Court on Feb. 3, 2020.

Turnover, court intervention roil state agency that oversees lawyers

A rift between the Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility's oversight board and the Minnesota Supreme Court now threatens the credibility of the agency charged with upholding integrity within the legal profession.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison says the settlement industry needs reform.

Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison wants to crack down on settlement abuses

AG Keith Ellison wants Minnesota to guarantee that anybody who wants to sell part of their court settlement would be represented by an attorney.
Gabrielle Valdez talked with Elspeth Owen after her request to sell some of her structured settlement payments was postponed during a hearing before B

Scrutiny helps accident victims get better deals when selling settlement payments

In Washington, D.C., those seeking lump sums get legal aid — and better deals result.
One Minnesotan who sold payments from her structured settlement three times receives piles of mail solicitations from companies seeking to buy more pa

Accident victims hounded to sell their payouts — again and again

Firms go to great lengths to find people who are receiving settlement payments, swamping them with checks, calls and ads even after they've agreed to sell. For these companies, the payoff is high.
Tears streamed down Stanley Turner’s face as he learned from court records how much of his payments he has sold. He is one of hundreds of Minnesotan

Minnesota lawmakers vow to fix 'predatory' accident settlement practices

Accident settlement deals would face new scrutiny under Minnesota reforms.
Albuquerque attorney Matthew Vance, also a court-appointed guardian, says the client-guardian dynamic can be fraught.

Guardians protect financial future of accident victims

In Minnesota, judges routinely approve the sale of payouts. In Albuquerque, N.M., guardians often put on the brakes, and help victims keep more of their money.
Laura Dalluhn — with her mother, Mary Jo — says she was still in a hospital psychiatric unit when a Greenwood Funding representative called her to

Murky laws hobble judges weighing lifechanging deals for accident victims

The final, often reluctant arbiters in settlement buyout cases are given little information about sellers and few rules on companies seeking to buy.
Advisers tasked with helping Minnesota accident victims often have illegal ties to companies

Advisers tasked with helping Minnesota accident victims often have illegal ties to companies

Steve Matiatos in the basement apartment at his cousin’s house, where he’s living rent free in exchange for doing work around the house and dog si

Accident victims surrender millions to a relentless industry

They suffered tragic, disabling injuries, and the large legal settlements were meant to provide them with a steady income for decades. Then an obscure niche of the financial industry came calling — wanting to cash in.
James Taylor thanked Elizabeth Nevitt, the attorney representing Peachtree Settlement Funding, after a hearing in August in which Judge Tammy Jo Hock

These Minnesotans suffered catastrophic accidents. Now some say they are left with nothing

Hundreds of Minnesotans have sold future portions of their long-term legal settlements at a discount for cash upfront. These six stories explore the aftermath.
The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission accuses a Minnesota couple of defrauding more than 200 people in a complicated investment scheme.

Prominent Minn. horse-racing couple ran $18 million Ponzi scheme, SEC says

A Shakopee couple, owners of racehorses at Canterbury Park, have been collecting money from investors since 2007, regulators say.
Michael J. Harvey, owner of the now-defunct Able Energy solar installation company, is charged with swindling customers in Minnesota and Wisconsin out

Minnesota solar installer charged with swindling dozens of customers

Able Energy's Michael Harvey faces up to 20 years in prison for accusations of stealing more than $1 million from his customers.
Erik Travis

Erik Travis, organist and church music director, dies at 63

He became a vital part of services at Our Lady of Grace Catholic Church in Edina for 19 years.
Gloria Morales, who owns and operates Gloria’s Beauty Salon, at her mostly empty salon in Minneapolis.

Struggling for a year, owner of E. Lake Street salon may be forced to close

Shop owner hopes to restart in Brooklyn Park after customers have bailed on her Minneapolis location.
Joseph Mullen

Joseph Mullen, longtime General Mills food scientist, dies at 87

"He was the whole-grain guru," a former colleague says.
A photo of a young Jim Klobuchar in the service was displayed at his family funeral at Fort Snelling National Cemetery on Saturday.

'Everyone has an Everest': Journalist Jim Klobuchar laid to rest

Writer's adventures, trials and war service honored at small military funeral.
Franklin-Nicollet Liquor Store installed security shutters after Minneapolis passed an ordinance allowing the external devices.

After rule change, businesses rush to install security shutters

From small retailers to corporate giants, property owners are rushing to take advantage of a new ordinance in Minneapolis that allows them to use retractable metal shutters and roll-up gates to protect their assets.
Red Wing Police Chief Roger Pohlman was fired by the City Council.

Many in Red Wing upset after City Council fires police chief

Council members said the chief undermined social justice efforts. But the mayor says the firing was a mistake.
Diane Fridley Norman

Diane Fridley Norman, ad account executive and arts advocate, dies at 71

Though she rarely acted on stage after college, Diane Fridley Norman always knew how to put on a show.Whether she was pitching a new advertising…
Cashier Yolanda Saaveda filled the shelves at Los Hornos del Rey with baked goods at Highland Plaza in Minneapolis on Thursday.

Torched in riots, Highland Plaza is up and running again in Minneapolis

After an eight-month hiatus, Cost Cutters and three other tenants reopened last week.
Destroyed in last year’s riots, the Atlas Staffing site on E. Lake Street is still undergoing demolition.

Businesses still waiting for Minneapolis to come through with demolition help

Instead of promised funds, Mpls. has threatened some owners of ruined properties with hefty fines.
Meet the immigrant-owned businesses coming back from the brink on Lake Street

Meet the immigrant-owned businesses coming back from the brink on Lake Street

Highland Plaza is home to several immigrant-owned businesses, all of whom plan to reopen.
Subway owner Kim Seng tried to see If he could walk through the boarded up front door of his business as he checked in on the progress of reconstructi

How a Lake Street shopping center is rebuilding after riots

Workers are erasing the scars left by one of the most turbulent weeks in Minnesota history.
Minnesota's crackdown on gifts means party is over for title industry

Minnesota's crackdown on gifts means party is over for title industry

Commerce Department crackdown on "kickbacks" is unsettling players.
Jack Wheatley, a farmer in Thorp, Wash., said visits from state regulators have made him take safety more seriously and he has made safety updates pro

Midwest's hands-off approach to farm safety has a cost: lost lives

Washington state's approach to workplace safety illustrates how death rates drop sharply when oversight covers every farm, no matter how small.
Scott Collier was paralyzed in a farm accident two years ago. He was able to get back to farming with help from the AgrAbility program by modifying an

Part 3: For farmers, it's a job for life – and death

Almost half of the Minnesotans who died in farm accidents in the past decade were 65 or older, according to a Star Tribune review of more than 200 death investigations.
The 1955 International Harvester that rolled over as 61-year-old Brad Braun was moving a bale of hay on Tuesday, May 5, 2015, in Clear Lake, Minn. ] R

Part 2: Unsafe tractors drive up death toll at family farms

Safety upgrades to farm equipment can save lives, but many improvements are expensive – and there are no incentives or rules to enforce them.
Shelley Fenton cried into her husband Al Fenton's arm as he tearfully told the story about his two-year-old son Benny's death while riding with him on

Part 1: Deaths on the rise on Minnesota family farms

Farm deaths jump in Minnesota and neighboring states as government backs away from safety.

Massachusetts has nation's toughest ATV law

PLYMOUTH, MASS – The showroom at Pilgrim Power Sports is sparse if you're looking for an all-terrain vehicle.Only three new ATVs are on the lot,…

Part One: Four-wheel thrills drive child injuries, deaths

Some ATV enthusiasts are gambling with their children's lives. Instead of buying off-road vehicles specifically designed for young riders, many parents are letting their children drive adult-sized ATVs that can exceed 60 miles per hour and are as difficult to control as a car.
A new vehicle with added safety features called the Sportsman Ace is being built at a Polaris plant in Milford, Iowa

Part Four: ATV design changes could reduce injuries

Some call for added features, but the industry says riders who follow the warnings already in place will be safe.

Part Three: ATV regulations are all over the map

Some have imposed tough laws for children to ride, but others leave age minimum open.
Linsey Ellestad, 13, of Hastings, was among the young drivers who attended a Department of Natural Resources training course.

Part Two: States shun federal ATV age limits

For years, federal regulators, doctors and the all-terrain vehicle industry have agreed: Children should not ride ATVs designed for adults. But in most states, the practice is legal.