Staff Directory 6370613

Randy Furst

Reporter | Minneapolis
Phone: 612-673-4224

Randy Furst is a Star Tribune general assignment reporter covering a range of issues, including tenants rights, minority rights, American Indian rights and police accountability. 


Furst has spent most of his 45-year career at The Minneapolis Star and later at the combined Star Tribune as a general assignment reporter. He has been nominated four times for the Pulitzer Prize (a series on the condition of migrant workers; questions regarding the innocence of two black men convicted of rape; the arrest of three Northwest Airline pilots for drinking and flying; and the exposure of a rogue Metro Gang Strike Force, which was forced to disband) and was a finalist twice.
Recent content from Randy Furst
Alberder Gillespie's termination was recommended to Mayor Jacob Frey on Friday by City Operations Officer Margaret Anderson Kelliher, and Frey agreed.

Minneapolis civil rights director fired

Civil Rights Director Alberder Gillespie was terminated Friday after superiors said she 'poses an immediate threat' to police reform.
Malia Stanley and Brianna Johnson read the newly-published “Kings of Quests: A Tale of Bros” before the seventh-grade author Miles Asberry-Wallace

With new comic book, young Minneapolis author, artist makes his debut

"Kings of Quests" is a magical tale about four Black teens who meet in the forest.
David Douglass of Effective Law Enforcement for All made a presentation on January 9, 2024, at Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of

Minneapolis has faced 'unique trauma,' says newly named police monitor

David Douglass plans to bring his monitoring team to Minneapolis in early March.
Thousands of protesters marched to Mayor Jacob Frey's house in northeast Minneapolis on Saturday, June 6, to demand the city defund the Police Departm

Minneapolis picks independent evaluator for policing reforms

The city has entered a court-enforceable settlement agreement with the Minnesota Department of Human Rights and continues to negotiate a consent decree with the U.S. Department of Justice.
The legal team whose work led to Darrell Robinson's murder convictions and death sentence being overturned by the Louisiana Supreme Court include: Ed

Louisiana man's murder conviction, death sentence vacated with help from Minneapolis lawyers

Darrell Robinson had been on death row for 23 years and was ordered a new trial.
Minneapolis’ ordinance that bars landlords from discriminating against tenants using Section 8 vouchers goes into effect in 2018.

Appeals Court: Landlords can't bar tenants due to subsidized housing

The decision will help tenants in a tight rental market, advocates say.
Rally participants unfurled the Minnesota and Palestinian flags Friday in Brooklyn Park before boarding the bus for Washington, D.C.

Local activists join D.C. march, urging U.S. to stop funding Israel's bombing of Gaza

About 25,000 people from around the United States are expected to attend Saturday's rally near the White House.
Betty Wilson, tenacious and respected Star Tribune political reporter, has died at 99

Betty Wilson, tenacious and respected Star Tribune political reporter, has died at 99

Wilson worked for the Minneapolis Star and the Star Tribune from 1968 until her retirement in 1991.
Suspended Twin Cities attorney predicts Minnesota Supreme Court will exonerate him

Suspended Twin Cities attorney predicts Minnesota Supreme Court will exonerate him

Michael Padden, who faces disbarment, denies allegations that he advised a client to jump bail and misappropriated client funds in a series of cases.
Prominent Twin Cities attorney suspended and faces disbarment for alleged misconduct

Prominent Twin Cities attorney suspended and faces disbarment for alleged misconduct

Michael Padden is alleged to have lied to a judge and mishandled client funds. He calls the matter "a witch hunt" and that he's been shown to have done nothing wrong.
No stranger to hardship,  Fartun Weli uses nonprofit Isuroon to help East African families

No stranger to hardship, Fartun Weli uses nonprofit Isuroon to help East African families

The 13-year-old organization has a staff of 38 and provides a wide range of services to Somali and East African women and their families.
Erica Bouza, peace activist and wife of former Minneapolis police chief, dies at 92

Erica Bouza, peace activist and wife of former Minneapolis police chief, dies at 92

She made headlines in the 1980s when she was arrested at anti-nuclear protests.
Demonstrators protest Rep. Dean Phillips' stance on Israel-Hamas conflict at his Minnetonka office

Demonstrators protest Rep. Dean Phillips' stance on Israel-Hamas conflict at his Minnetonka office

They had planned a sit-in but found the offices locked.
Sister Rita McDonald singing with other protesters at the Hennepin County Government Center in 1997, after 78 land-mine protesters were found guilty o

Sister Rita McDonald, oldest of four sisters who long protested war, dies at 101

Spurred by opposition to the Vietnam War, McDonald and her sisters took to the streets, and became peace protest fixtures in Minnesota for decades.
Judge temporarily blocks limits on disability pensions for police officers, firefighters

Judge temporarily blocks limits on disability pensions for police officers, firefighters

A hearing on the state's motion to dismiss the lawsuit is slated for Jan. 31.
Ex-Minneapolis Police Chief Tony Bouza, shown in 1988.

Former Minneapolis Chief Tony Bouza hailed as police innovator

Several internationally known experts on policing methodologies eulogized Bouza at a program at the McNamara Alumni Center at the University of Minnesota.
Last November, audience members responded as the Minneapolis City Council’s public health and safety committee voted to recommend approval of the pr

Minneapolis civilian oversight is moving slowly as complaints against police mount

In its first six months, the Community Commission on Police Oversight has handled only two cases out of the hundreds of complaints filed.
Joey McLeister, Star Tribune file

Memorial set for former Minneapolis Police Chief Tony Bouza

Bouza died June 26 at the age of 94.
Dr. Erick Hakanson

Dr. Erick Hakanson, OB-GYN who advocated for teen mothers and women's rights, dies at 102

In a 49-year-career, the doctor focused on urgently needed prenatal and reproductive health care.
Puppeteer Christopher Lutter-Gardella, wearing a black bear outfit, entertained kids outside the Giiwedinong Treaty Rights and Culture Museum, which o

American Indians once protested outside the old Park Rapids library. Now they have a museum there.

In Park Rapids, Minn., a museum on Native and treaty rights opened last week in a former Carnegie library once used by pipeline builder Enbridge.
The U.S. Federal Courthouse in Minneapolis.

Ruling likely puts pressure on Minneapolis to settle lawsuit by journalists, observers say

A sharply worded federal court ruling denied summary judgment motions by the city and the Hennepin County Sheriff's Office to throw out the case.
A Minneapolis police officer fired a rubber bullet from atop the Minneapolis Police Department Third Precinct station on E. Lake St. during unrest fol

Judge allows journalists' lawsuit against Minneapolis police to proceed, says evidence of misconduct exists

U.S. District Judge Wilhelmina Wright rejected motions by the city and Hennepin County to dismiss the suit.
Man found behind south Minneapolis home dies from gunshot wounds

Man found behind south Minneapolis home dies from gunshot wounds

The death put the homicide death toll in Minneapolis at 46 so far this year, according to a Star Tribune database.
Fire crews free man pinned under light-rail train in Minneapolis

Fire crews free man pinned under light-rail train in Minneapolis

The pedestrian was stuck under the train at the Lake Street station.
Hennepin County inmate dies in custody, the second in nine days

Hennepin County inmate dies in custody, the second in nine days

The 36-year-old man was found unresponsive in his bed.
St. Louis Park man gets 4 years in prison for cyberstalking ex-wife, her family in 'vicious' case

St. Louis Park man gets 4 years in prison for cyberstalking ex-wife, her family in 'vicious' case

Julyen Alonzo Martin, 30, repeatedly threatened to kill his victims.
Winona LaDuke addressed protesters during a demonstration against Enbridge Line 3 outside the Minnesota Capitol in August 2021.

Judge dismisses charges against activists accused of disrupting Enbridge Line 3

In her memorandum, Senior Judge Leslie Metzen cited injustices against Native Americans.
Ukrainian teens Kira Sukhoboichenko, Margaret Linnyk and Kamilla Detkinaon waved at other parade floats before hopping on the 4H float to represent th

Escaping bombs and war sirens, 30 Ukrainian teens visit Minnesota

The youths are spending five weeks in the state this summer, visiting civic and business leaders and building skills to lead their country in the future.
Muhammad Masood

Former Mayo Clinic researcher sentenced to 18 years in prison for planning to aid ISIS

Muhammad Masood, a licensed medical doctor in Pakistan, was arrested in 2020 by the FBI as he prepared to leave for Syria.
Mindy Travers points to the "racial restrictions" noted in the paperwork for the home she and her husband Nathan Morales own Friday, Dec. 30, 2022 in

Deeds barred home buyers of color in parts of Dakota County

Researchers say statistics suggest an effort was made to create a buffer around the urban core.
Anton “Tony” Lazzaro

Former GOP activist Lazzaro sentenced to 21 years for sex trafficking

"Mr. Lazzaro has not shown a shred of remorse," said the judge at the sentencing.
Anton Lazzaro

Prosecutors seeking 30-year sentence for Lazzaro on sex trafficking conviction

The businessman and former GOP donor will be sentenced Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis.
Kimberly Handy Jones flanked by Clyde McLemore left and her sister Nanette Adams held a poster of her son Cordale Handy who was killed by St. Paul Pol

Jury awards $11.5 million to family of a Black man fatally shot in 2017 by St. Paul police

The award is the largest payout in St. Paul's history, city officials said.
Benedda Cotten and Terry Davis with their two children last week at their home in Eden Prairie.

Federal appeals court rules for Mpls. police in 2019 incident criticized by DOJ

The ruling last week by the Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturned a lower court decision that found in favor of a couple alleging police violated their rights.
Minnesota Appeals Court Judge Jeffrey Bryan was one of four federal court nominees announced Thursday.

Biden names state Appeals Court judge to Minnesota's federal bench

If confirmed by the Senate, Jeffrey Bryan will be the first Latino on the state's federal bench.
County Administrator David Hough presents the 2019 budget the Hennepin County Board Tuesday.

New policy bars top Hennepin County officials from living and working out-of-state

Two high-ranking department heads were allowed to live and work in California during the pandemic, drawing criticism.
The Minnesota Legislature passed a law on PTSD treatment for public safety workers that went into effect on July 1.

Minnesota's new PTSD law undermines treatment, experts say

Third parties should decide whether public safety workers can return to work and not the therapists who treat them, according to some experts.
Judge Jeffrey Bryan, Minnesota Court of Appeals

Judge Jeffrey Bryan is expected to become the first Latino on the federal bench in Minnesota

The White House is expected to announce Bryan's nomination to the U.S. District Court next month, filling the vacancy left by Judge John Tunheim.
Antiwar protesters held a demonstration last month in St. Paul opposing U.S. aid to Ukraine.

Local antiwar groups divided over U.S. military aid to Ukraine

Many say the U.S. is using Ukraine as a pawn, but others say that view ignores Russian aggression.
New rules a 'game changer' in state licensing of police officers

New rules a 'game changer' in state licensing of police officers

The Minnesota Board of Peace Officers Standards and Training can now revoke the license of an officer who violates its conduct guidelines, based on evidence presented in an administrative hearing — regardless of whether the officer has been charged or convicted of a crime.
Prof. Natalie Netzel, left, co-director of the law clinics at Mitchell Hamline School of Law, met Friday with law student Hannah Burton to discuss her

Mitchell Hamline marks 50 years of life-changing clinics for law students

Minnesota State Capitol, St. Paul

Minnesota House passes $104M bill covering police with PTSD

Similar legislation in the Senate has had one committee hearing, with another scheduled Wednesday.
City Council unanimously approves Minneapolis police oversight commission members

City Council unanimously approves Minneapolis police oversight commission members

The commission has no Hispanic or Asian representatives, an omission that went unmentioned by council members.
The Minneapolis City skyline, including City Hall, as seen from the back of the U.S. District Court.

Minneapolis City Council to vote on whether to approve police oversight commission nominees

Nominees represent cross-section of professions, but not all races.
St. Paul Mayor Melvin Carter addressed the media Monday on the “Just Deeds Coalition” project during a news conference at Mitchell Hamline School

St. Paul announces program to help homeowners discharge racial covenants

The city now has a website where residents can go to learn whether their home has a racial covenant.
Woman fatally shot in St. Paul

Woman fatally shot in St. Paul

St. Paul authorities say the shooting Saturday morning in the Battle Creek neighborhood appears to have been "domestic related."
Vic Rosenthal

Vic Rosenthal, 'pillar of the local Jewish activist community,' dies at 68

Even in his final days, he lobbied for social justice.
The Minneapolis City skyline, including City Hall, as seen from the back of the U.S. District Court.

Minneapolis police oversight board applicants with police ties draw critics

About a dozen people with law enforcement ties are among 160 applicants for the 15-member commission.
The Minneapolis City skyline, including City Hall, as seen from the back of the U.S. District Court.

New Mpls. police oversight panel sees a record 160 applicants

Created last fall by the City Council, the CCPO replaces previous watchdog groups that were criticized as ineffective before going dormant last year.
Minneapolis police officers investigated a crime scene in the North Loop neighborhood last summer.

Police disability retirements stressing communities, sending state pension costs soaring

The Public Employees Retirement Association estimates that police and fire pensions are costing $40 million more per year than expected.
Audience members reacted last fall as a Minneapolis City Council committee approved a proposal to revamp the city’s police oversight process.

Minneapolis seeks applicants for new police oversight commission

Left: Kelly McCarthy, chair of the POST Board and police chief of Mendota Height and POST Board interim executive director Erik Misselt testified Thur

State POST board adopts rules barring police involvement in extremist activity

Violations by an officer could result in sanctions by the board, up to and including revocation of their license.
Left: Kelly McCarthy, chair of the POST Board and police chief of Mendota Height and POST Board interim executive director Erik Misselt testified Thur

POST Board expected to adopt rules to keep racists and extremists out of law enforcement

Strip searches curtailed at Shakopee women's prison

Strip searches curtailed at Shakopee women's prison

After protests, the Minnesota Department of Corrections says it has begun moving toward use of electronic searches. "We want to reduce the risk of further traumatizing people," Corrections Commissioner Paul Schnell said.
Nantambu Noah Kambon

Man serving life for 1992 murder of Minneapolis officer is denied parole

Another hearing will be scheduled to consider parole for Nantambu Noah Kambon in four years.
One dead in shooting at Mall of America

One dead in shooting at Mall of America

The shooting occurred inside the Nordstrom department store just before 8 p.m. and involved an altercation between two groups of young men.
Bryce Borka

Eagan police say man still missing after nearly two months

Bryce Borca, 23, went missing Oct. 30. Eagan police say an "extensive search" has turned up little.
Minneapolis City Hall, as seen from the back of the U.S. Courthouse.

Mpls. passes controversial overhaul of police oversight

Council members critical of parts of the ordinance pushed through several amendments before the council voted 7-4 to approve it.
Council Member Linea Palmisano, left, and President Andrea Jenkins shown in August during Mayor Jacob Frey's 2023 budget address.

Minneapolis City Council to delay vote and amend proposed ordinance on police oversight

Size of police oversight commission could change, according to Vice Chair Palmisano.
Joe Rigert

Joe Rigert, award-winning Star Tribune investigative reporter, dies at 91

Rigert won many state and national awards for public service reporting during 35 years with the Minneapolis newspaper.
Audience members reacted as the committee voted to approve the ordinance during their meeting in Minneapolis City Hall Wednesday, Nov. 30, 2022. The M

Mpls. council committee overrides critics, approves proposed police oversight commission

Most speakers at a public hearing denounced the proposal to revamp the civilian police oversight process.
More than 1,000 people walked through downtown Minneapolis on Feb. 5, 2022, to protest the shooting death of Amir Locke by Minneapolis police. The Cit

Debate stirs as Minneapolis council vote nears on proposed police oversight reforms

Activists and past leaders of the city's civilian review process say the proposed changes fail to tackle some of the current system's most serious shortcomings involving police misconduct.
Amwati Pepi Mckenzie

Man convicted in 1992 murder of Minneapolis police officer to remain in prison

Amwati Pepi Mckenzie, whose life sentence was reviewed for possible supervised release Tuesday, was one of four men convicted in 1993 in Haaf's murder in south Minneapolis.
Amwati Pepi Mckenzie

One of four men convicted in 1992 Mpls. cop murder up for release

Amwati Pepi Mckenzie faces a hearing Tuesday to consider whether he should be granted supervised release — an outcome opposed by a number of police.
In 2019, Gov.-elect Tim Walz, meeting in 2019 with Jesse Ventura, a former governor of Minnesota.

Ventura says Walz pledged to him quick action on legalizing marijuana

"That was one of many reasons why I endorsed Gov. Walz," the former governor said Friday. "He would legalize cannabis, whereas Republicans are the ones stopping it."
Tracy Phillips, left, and Jake Wylie were forced to move out of Great River Landing to a rooming house in downtown Minneapolis that lacks the same ame

Two dozen formerly incarcerated men were moved out of transitional housing — and no one said why

Authorities allege criminal activity at Great River Landing, but the displaced men say they weren't given any specifics.
'I thought I was going to be George Floyd before George Floyd,' says man stopped, cuffed by Minneapolis officer

'I thought I was going to be George Floyd before George Floyd,' says man stopped, cuffed by Minneapolis officer

Ramone Brown sues Minneapolis, former officer after he was pulled over for no reason and car searched.
Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison announced on Wednesday a lawsuit against Fleet Farm for allegedly selling firearms to straw purchasers. He wa

Fleet Farm accused of negligently selling guns to straw buyers

Attorney General Keith Ellison is suing in Hennepin County District Court. At least one of those guns acquired in such a "straw purchase" was used in a 2021 shootout at Truck Stop bar in St. Paul
Supporters of Jingyao Liu rallied Sunday, Oct. 2, outside the Hennepin County Government Center, where Liu’s lawsuit accusing Chinese billionaire Ri

Billionaire settles U student's suit alleging 2018 rape in Mpls.

The settlement was announced late Saturday, just before the civil trial in Hennepin County was set to begin.
Jury set for trial of Chinese billionaire Richard Liu, accused of raping University of Minnesota student

Jury set for trial of Chinese billionaire Richard Liu, accused of raping University of Minnesota student

Opening statements are expected Monday in the civil trial, held in Hennepin County District Court.
Jury selection begins today in sexual assault lawsuit against Chinese billionaire

Jury selection begins today in sexual assault lawsuit against Chinese billionaire

Jurors will decide whether Richard Liu plied a University of Minnesota student from China with alcohol and raped her, as she claims, or whether the student fabricated the accusation in hopes of a financial windfall.