Friday, July 31, 2015

Missouri State News 4pm Update - 7/31/15

Missouri Senate President Pro Tem to Resign

(Jefferson City) --  Missouri Senate President Pro Tem Tom Dempsey announced his resignation today (Friday). Dempsey, a Republican from St. Charles, says his resignation will take effect August seventh, and he wishes to spend more time with his family. He was first elected to the House in 2000, then to the Senate in 2007.



McCaskill Convenes Hearing on Medicare


(St. Louis, MO)  --  To commemorate the 50th anniversary of Medicare, Missouri Senator Claire McCaskill is holding a hearing today (Friday)on the challenges and opportunities facing the program.  Speakers include members of the healthcare industry, and advocates with A-A-R-P. There are about one million Medicare recipients in the state of Missouri.



Boone County Court Receives "Fair" Rating on Audit


(Columbia, MO)  --  The state auditor's office released its report today (Friday), giving the Boone County Court a "fair" rating.  This means the court needs improvement in some areas, especially receipting procedures, and user access to data.



Mexico Man Under Suspicion for Child Molestation


(Mexico, MO)  -- A Mexico, Missouri man is in custody, awaiting charges pertaining to accusations of child molestation.  Forty-year-old Darran Boston is accused of sexual molestation and abuse of two girls between the ages of 10 and 17.  Earlier in the month, a girl went to the police to report abuse that had been going on for the past two years.  During the investigation, another girl came forward with the same accusations.



Charges Filed in Thursday's Cole County Shooting


(Jefferson City, MO)  --  Prosecutors filed charges today (Friday) against Richard Beekman of Cole County, in connection with a shooting Thursday in Jefferson City.  Beekman was charged with unlawful possession of a weapon, and leaving the scene of a shooting.  He and two others fled the scene after an argument with the victim, during which Beekman shot the victim in the right wrist and abdomen.

Nebraska State News (4pm update)

>>Victim Identified In Fatal Crash On Interstate 80

(Keith County, NE)  --  Officials have named the victim in a fatal crash Thursday night in Keith County.  It happened on Interstate 90 near Paxton.  Forty-three-year-old Angela Miller, of Ravenna, was riding in a pickup that was rear-ended by an S-U-V.  The truck then traveled across the median and collided with the gas tank on tractor-trailer, causing an explosion.  Miller later died at Great Plains Health.  The current conditions of the three drivers are unclear.  Police haven’t announced if the driver of the S-U-V will face charges.

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>>Police Arrest Alleged Gunman In Nebraska Shooting

(Holdrege, NE)  --  A 29-year-old Lincoln man is taken into custody for a shooting in south-central Nebraska.  Lincoln Police arrested Julio Valenzuela on one count of attempted murder for the shooting of 34-year-old Donald Handy.  Valenzuela allegedly shot Handy in the stomach and arm on April 23rd at an apartment in Holdrege.  He then fled the scene and wasn’t captured until yesterday (Thursday).  Handy suffered critical injuries, but survived the shooting.

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>>Teen Murder Suspect Ordered To Stand Trial

(Omaha, NE)  --  The 17-year-old suspect in a drug deal turned fatal shooting in north Omaha will stand trial for first-degree murder.  A judge ruled earlier today (Friday) that there was enough evidence for Jamar Milton to stand trial in the murder of Jamymell Ray.  Ray was shot in the head and neck June 29th in Miller Park.  Milton’s 12-year-old brother Jarrell and 15-year-old Shuntayvious Primes-Willis are also accused in the shooting.  Milton’s trial date has not yet been set.

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>>Beetles Could Cost Omaha Millions For Damaged Trees

(Omaha, NE)  --  The City of Omaha is preparing to spend millions on damaged trees if a beetle migrates to Nebraska.  The Emerald Ash Borer, a beetle that eats away trees from within, has been reported in Iowa.  If the bug pops up in Omaha, the city may have to spend up to three million dollars to dispose of around 11-thousand affected trees.  Officials say help from private donors may be needed for costs of tree removal and replacement.  As of right now, there are no signs of the beetle in the state, but residents are urged to contact the city if they notice an unhealthy looking tree.

Iowa State News (4pm update)

Shooting In Waterloo Sends Three To The Hospital

(Waterloo, IA)  --  An overnight shooting in central Waterloo sends three people to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.  It was just after midnight this morning (Friday) when law enforcement was called to West 5th Street.  While en route, they received a call that someone was suffering from gunshot wounds on that street.  Three victims, two men and one woman, all suffered gunshot wounds to their legs.  Police also found shell casings on the scene, and two cars damaged by gunfire.  No suspect information has been released.

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Detonator Washes Up Along Fort Dodge Creek

(Fort Dodge, IA)  --  No foul play is suspected after an explosive device is found along Isaak Walton Creek in Fort Dodge.  Officers were called to the area last night (Thursday) after someone found a small, yellow device lying in the mud.  Investigators found the words “danger detonator” and “blasting cap” on the side of the item.  Agents with the State Fire Marshal’s Office have confirmed the device was a detonator, which they believe is five-to-seven years old.  Authorities are urging anyone with information to come forward.

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Domino’s Manager Accused Of Stealing Thousands From Business

(Iowa City, IA)  --  The former manager of Domino’s Pizza in Iowa City is suspected of taking home more money than what he earned.  Thirty-two-year-old Samuel Rainey, of Coralville, was arrested last night (Thursday) and charged with first-degree theft.  Rainey allegedly stole more than 20-thousand dollars when he worked as the night manager at the pizza place.  Investigators say he was supposed to deposit money on 22 occasions this year, but never took the money to the bank.  He’s currently in the Johnson County Jail.

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Manure Spill Reported In Southwest Iowa

(Nodaway, IA)  --  Thousands of gallons of manure may have been released during a spill from a hog farrowing operation in Adams County.  The Department of Natural Resources says the manure backed up and ran out a pipe at a New Fashion Pork facility around 3:45 Thursday afternoon.  The spill occurred during a routine transfer of manure from a barn to a storage lagoon.  The flow was immediately shut off, but 15-thousand gallons may have flowed under a county road and across a pasture.  Some manure even reached a ditch that flows to the Middle Nodaway River.  Farm staff constructed a temporary dam, and a contractor worked this morning (Friday) to excavate the manure from the pasture.  The D-N-R is monitoring the cleanup.

World/National News 4pm Update - 7/31/15

Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush Face Off on Racial Equality

(Ft. Lauderdale,FL)  --  Democrat Hilary Clinton and Republican Jeb Bush offered different visions of how they would take on economic and racial inequality at the annual Urban League convention in Fort Lauderdale, Florida today (Friday). Clinton took a jab at Bush's "right to rise" slogan, asking if people could accept that, while accepting the phasing out of Medicare and the repeal of Obamacare.  Bush responded by saying that Democratic policies have failed the education system, and he would work to end that injustice.


Walkout at Taliban Meeting Fuels Rumors of Split

(Peshawar, Pakistan)  --  At this week's Taliban meeting, Mullah Akhtar Mohammad Mansour (MULL-ah AHK-tar moh-HAM-ahd mahn-SOOR) was named as the head of the Islamist militant groupReports say the decision did not sit well with several senior members, including the son and brother of the late leader, who walked out in protest.  The dissent is the latest sign of the difficulty Mansour will face in pulling together a group already split over pursuing peace talks with the Afghan government. They also face challenges from ISIS.


Plummeting Oil Prices Slam Profits for Exxon Mobil, Chevron

(New York, NY)  --  Weak oil prices shrank quarterly profits at Exxon Mobil Corporation and Chevron Corporation today (Friday). Both companies say they will rethink operations and plans for the near future.  Earnings at Exxon Mobil were the worst in a decade, adding to executives' concerns that they had not acted quickly enough to deal with the more than 50 percent drop in prices since last summer.


Cases of Legionnaire's Disease On The Rise

(Bronx, NY) -- Cases of Legionnaire's Disease have been rising.  More than three times as many cases were reported in 2009 --nearly four-thousand-- than in 2011, when only one-thousand were reported.  In New York City,  where an outbreak this month has killed two and sickened 46, the Center for Disease Control reports a 230 percent rise in cases from 2002 to 2009, with the largest number in high-poverty neighborhoods.  Many cases have been linked to apartment building rooftop cooling towers.


Questions Remain About the Allegiant Airlines Emergency Landing

(Washington, DC)  --  More questions remain surrounding the emergency landing of and Allegiant Airlines flight at Fargo, North Dakota's Hector International Airport last week.  The incident occurred when the pilot told air traffic controllers he was low on fuel and had to land, even though the airport was temporarily closed.  The airline claims the flight was operated correctly and safely, but a spokesman with the Federal Aviation Administration says there are still questions.  When checked, the MD-80 airplane, flown by company executives, landed with approximately 42 minutes' worth of fuel left.

Wisconsin State News 4pm Update - 7/31/15

Accessibility Problems at Wisconsin Polling Places

(Madison, WI)  --  Thousands of accessibility problems have been reported at polling sites throughout Wisconsin. The state Government Accountability Board conducted inspections at 808 polling sites over the past seven elections, and found nearly four-thousand accessibility issues. The G-A-B report said 42-percent of the violations were serious enough that they could prevent a disabled voter from casting a private and independent ballot. The Board says many problems can be fixed with minor corrections, like bigger print on signs, and marking accessible entrances.
 
 
Madison Man Arrested For Drugs, After Driving Car With Stolen Plates

(Verona, WI)  --  A Madison man is in jail on drug charges after he was seen driving a car with stolen license plates. Verona police stopped 44-year-old Jesse May, after using a license plate recognition system to check the plates and make the traffic stop. Officers searched the vehicle and found 11 grams of methamphetamine, along with marijuana, prescription pills, and other drug paraphernalia.  May faces charges of possession of methamphetamine, drug paraphernalia, and felony bail jumping.
 

Wisconsin Police Warn of New Phone Scam Involving Fake Hostage Taking

(Hartland, WI)  -- Wisconsin police are advising people to be aware of a new phone scam. A caller says a family member is being held hostage, and unless they pay a specific amount of money, that family member will be killed. It cost one family hundreds of dollars, and nearly cost another thousands.  Often, the scammers will keep the line tied up, so the victim cannot verify the whereabouts of the family member.  Police say if you don’t recognize the incoming number, let it go to voicemail.  If the call does get through, do not panic, and call the police as soon as possible.

 
President of Blackhawk Technical College to Retire

(Janesville, WI)  --  The president of Blackhawk Technical College announced today (Friday) he will retire next June.   Thomas Eckert has led educational institutions for more than 31 years, and has been at B-T-C since September of 2010. Members of the board praised his ability to build strong teams within the college, allowing the school to move forward.  The search for a new president will begin immediately. 

 
New Law Regarding Car-Deer Hit Management

(Madison, WI)  --  A new statute changes the way car-deer hits are managed in Wisconsin. Previously, if you hit a deer and wanted to keep it, you had to call law enforcement and get a possession tag.  As of last week, the driver of the vehicle can remove the carcass from the scene, after notifying the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources.  However, police will still respond if there is serious damage, or if people are hurt.

Wisconsin State Sports 4pm Update - 7/31/15

Brewers Continue Trading Spree, Deal Parra and Broxton
(Milwaukee, WI)  --  The Milwaukee Brewers had sent two veterans away on the final day of the non-waiver trading deadline. G-M Doug Melvin dealt one of the league's hottest hitters, Gerardo Parra, to Baltimore for Triple-"A" pitcher Zach Davies. A couple hours later, the Brewers sent veteran reliever Jonathan Broxton to Saint Louis for Malik Collymore, a minor league outfielder. This follows earlier trades in which All-Stars Aramis Ramirez and Carlos Gomez were traded to contenders -- along with starter Mike Fiers. Parra was batting .460 in a season-high 14-game hitting streak. Shane Peterson is expected to play more center field. The Brewers reportedly sent cash to the Cardinals to complete the trade of Broxton, who has struggled this season with a five-point-eight-nine E-R-A. The 20-year-old Collymore is hitting .216 in rookie ball.

Hammel Faces Depleted Brewers
(Milwaukee, WI)  --  Chicago Cubs' starter Jason Hammel has not recorded a win since June 6th. But he could have a great chance to pull off a victory tonight against a depleted Brewers' lineup in Milwaukee. After trading Carlos Gomez, Aramis Ramirez, and Gerardo Parra, the last-place Brewers could be just what the doctor ordered for Hammel. The veteran right-hander is 6-and-0 in eight career starts against Milwaukee. Hammel is 0-and-3 in his last eight overall appearances, while getting just eleven runs of support. He's 5-and-5 on the year with a three-point-two-oh E-R-A. The Brewers will send rookie right-hander Taylor Jungmann to the hill. He's 5-and-2 with a solid E-R-A of two-point-one-four. He has given up two-runs-or-less in all nine of his starts this year.

New Series For Midwest League Teams
(Undated)  --  New series begin tonight for Wisconsin's two teams in the Class-"A" Midwest League. The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers are hitting the road at Quad Cities, after falling at home to Peoria 5-to-1 yesterday. The Beloit Snappers entertain Peoria this evening, after a 4-to-3 loss to Quad Cities in 12 innings. Beloit enters the weekend in fifth place among the eight Western Division teams at 14-and-19, 11-and-a-half games behind first-place Kane County. Wisconsin is sixth at 13-and-20, 12-and-a-half back.

Abbrederis Suffers Concussion At Packer Camp
(Green Bay, WI)  --  Green Bay Packers' receiver Jared Abbrederis has a concussion, after taking a hard fall at yesterday's training camp practice. Coach Mike McCarthy disclosed the injury after today's second workout of camp. He said Abbrederis would have to complete the N-F-L's concussion protocol before he returns. It's the second major camp injury in two years for the former Wisconsin stand-out. Abbrederis missed all of his rookie season after tearing an A-C-L knee ligament in just his fourth practice. Also, receiver Randall Cobb caught punts today, along with Micah Hyde. McCarthy says Cobb remains an option at the punt return spot. The Packers will practice in full pads for the first time tomorrow morning.

Ex-Badger Russell Wilson Gets Big Extension
(Seattle, WA)  --  Former Wisconsin quarterback Russell Wilson will soon be paid almost as much as Aaron Rodgers. The Seattle Seahawks have given a four-year contract extension to Wilson, reportedly worth almost 87-point-six million dollars. That's just below the 22-million dollars given to Green Bay's Rodgers, who's the N-F-L's highest-paid player. The 26-year-old Wilson is in his fourth season with Seattle. He's due to get just over one-and-a-half million in the final year of his rookie contract. Wilson's new deal includes almost 60-million dollars in guaranteed money. He won a Super Bowl with Seattle in the 2013 season, and took them to another Super Bowl a season ago with an N-F-C Championship win over the Packers.

Minnesota Wire: News 4pm Summary - 7/31/15

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Top Manager With Minnesota State Lottery No Longer Works For the State

(St. Paul, MN)  --  A manager with the state lottery—in charge of day-to-day operations—is no longer with the state, after being accused of drunken driving over the winter.  State Lottery Assistant Director Johnene Canfield was arrested in mid-December of last year on suspicion of drunk driving, second offense.  Her car crossed the center line of a road and hit an on-coming vehicle, head-on.  She seriously injured a 73-year-old man, and had a strong odor of alcohol on her breath.  The police report says she refused a breathalyzer, urine test, and blood test. However, when police obtained a warrant, her blood alcohol was found to be almost three times over the legal limit.

Two Dead in Car Wreck Had Just Left County Fair

(Garden City, MN)  --  Two people who died in a car accident Thursday had just left the Blue Earth County Fair, where one had been performing.  The Minnesota State Patrol confirms that 74-year-old Roderick Elbertand and his passenger, 75-year-old Kathy Ohman, both of North Mankato died at the scene.  Ohman had performed with the Stompers dance group at the Fair.  Their car collided with another vehicle driven by an 18-year-old, who suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Duluth Man Charged In May Death of Lincoln Park Woman

(Duluth, MN)  --  A 63-year-old Duluth man has been charged two months after the death of a Lincoln Park woman.  William James Holisky is charged with second-degree intentional murder in connection with the death of 52-year-old Lisa Jean Isham. Isham was found stabbed to death in her home May 30th.  Police said Holisky is currently being held at the Douglas County Jail on unrelated charges.

Mosquito Season Lasting Longer This Year

(Minneapolis, MN)  --  Mosquito season will last longer this year. Normally, the Fourth of July weekend is the height of mosquito season in Minnesota, but with the recent wet weather, the Metropolitan Mosquito Control District says the insects have become re-energized. Downed trees and debris are offering more breeding areas, so experts are recommending that people pack extra repellant if they plan on being in those areas.  While repellants containing “DEET” are the most effective, another alternative is Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus, which might be seen as “O-L-E” on the product label.

Middle School Girls Take Advantage of Duluth Engineering Summer Camp

(Duluth, MN)  --  A group of middle school girls spent a week consumed by the world of electrical engineering and physics at the University of Minnesota Duluth. After four days in school, they put their intense education to use—from electromagnetism to spring behavior—and built pinball machines.  Past years have seen projects such as paddle boats and solar powered lights. Many say the camp doesn’t feel like school, and they have gained a new perspective on science.


Minnesota Wire: News 11am Summary - 7/31/15

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Jul 31, 2015
Minnesota Wire: News 11am Summary

Zimbabwe Seeks To Put Twin Cities Lion Killer On Trial

(Harare, Zimbabwe) -- Zimbabwe wants Eden Prairie's Walter Palmer to return to that country, to stand trial for killing a protected research lion. Zimbabwe's climate minister told reporters today the Twin Cities dentist violated its laws -- and he asked U-S authorities to extradite him so he can be held accountable. The U-S Fish-and-Wildlife Commission says it has not been able to reach the 55-year-old Palmer, and has asked that he contact the agency "immediately." It's investigating Palmer's actions. He said he didn't know he did anything wrong when he shot Cecil on July first during a guided hunt. The head of Zimbabwe's safari industry association says bribes could have been involved. That's because Palmer's local guide did not have the proper hunting licenses and permits.



Legal Challenge Possible To Conference Closing

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(Minneapolis, MN) -- A court challenge may be on the way, after a federal judge barred the public from attending a conference on reforming Minnesota's Sex Offender Program. Judge Donovan Frank ruled last month that the program is unconstitutional, saying it excessively detains around 700 sex offenders. The judge's meeting on possible changes is set for August 10th, with over two dozen leaders to attend. Governor Mark Dayton says the meeting should be open to the public and media. The head of the program's committee in the Legislature says the secrecy "defies reason." Judge Frank has not said why he closed the gathering. The Star Tribune says it's considering its legal options to challenge the closure.



USDA Sets Fall Strategy On Bird Flu

(Washington, DC) -- The U-S-D-A vows to be ready for a return of the avian flu in Minnesota and the Upper Midwest this fall. Deputy Administrator John Clifford tells the House Agriculture Sub-committee his agency has met with state and poultry industry leaders to plan for new outbreaks. Clifford says there are several keys -- including what he calls a "shared responsibility" for bio-security. He says farmers need to wash equipment, limit individuals on their properties, and limit contact with wild birds. Once a case strikes, Clifford says it's critical to eradicate the rest of a farm's poultry as fast as possible. In his words, "The longer we take to depopulate sick birds, the more virus they produce." The agency is also undecided on using an H-5 vaccine that's been stockpiled, due to concerns from trading partners.



State Regulators OK Crude Oil Pipeline Upgrade

(Saint Paul, MN) -- The Minnesota Pipe Line Company has been given the okay to start a 125-million dollar improvement of a line that carries crude oil to refineries in the Twin Cities. The state Public Utilities Commission voted 4-nothing to allow six new pumping stations and upgrades on two others. The purpose is to increase the capacity of the pipeline, so three other lines can shut down for maintenance. The active line, known as "Line-Four," will have the ability to double its capacity to 350-thousand barrels a day from a terminal in Clearbrook to the Twin Cities. The line carries crude from North Dakota and Canada. The new project will begin next year, and be completed in 2017.



Big Price Hike For Medical Marijuana

(Saint Paul, MN) -- After being in business for less than a month, a Minnesota firm that makes medical marijuana has raised its prices. It now costs 15-to-20 percent more for those with pain and other conditions to buy liquids, oils, and vapors from Minnesota Medical Solutions. Because insurance does not cover the treatments, many folks struggle to afford them. Doctor Kyle Kingsley says more patients than expected are using low-income discounts -- and low enrollments make it tough for the company to obtain volume discounts. Leafline Labs, the state's other large maker of medical marijuana, does not plan to raise its prices.
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Iowa State News (11am update)

Newton woman dies in accident.

A woman from Newton was killed and two others injured in two-car crash Thursday in central Iowa.  The accident happened just before 4 p-m east of Colfax in Jasper County. A State Patrol crash report shows a car driven by 32-year-old Mandy Matlock of Prairie City crossed the center line and hit another car head-on. The driver of the second vehicle, 83-year-old Joanne Hunter of Newton, died at the scene. Matlock and a passenger in the Hunter vehicle, 91-year-old Betty Johnson of Newton, were injured. All were wearing seatbelts.


Parent File Suit in Stun-Gun Death

(Des Moines ,IA)  --   The parents of a man who died after being shot with stun guns by Worth County deputies have filed a lawsuit. The suit filed by Larry and Cheri Zubrod says the deputies "punitively and sadistically" used excessive force in subduing their 39-year-old son, Michael Zubrod. He was shot several times with stun guns from deputies responding to a domestic dispute in September 2013.




Sex Offender Surrenders

(Sioux City, IA) - A sex offender who failed to return to a work-release program in Sioux City has turned himself in to law enforcement. Twenty-five-year-old Michael Euchner the second surrendered at the Sioux City Police Department on Thursday. The Department of Corrections says Euchner had removed his GPS monitoring bracelet while working on July 21st and then left his job.



Man Gets Five Years for Lottery Ticket Theft
  
(Mason City, IA) A 25-year-old Clear Lake man has been given five years in prison for pilfering Iowa lottery tickets. Tyler Meuer was sentenced on Tuesday after pleading guilty to theft, unauthorized use of a credit card and to a weapons charge. Prosecutors dropped other charges in exchange for Meuer's pleas.The charges stem from crimes committed on May 10 in Clear Lake.

Nebraska State News (11am update) 7/31/15


>>Five-year-old dies after being hit by SUV


(Omaha, NE)  --  A five-year-old boy dies after being struck by an S-U-V in an alleyway in southeast Omaha. Police say Yoshua Mejia-Estrada was hit by the vehicle in an alleyway after he emerged from between a set of parked vehicles at around 9:15 a-m Thursday. Police say the boy was transported to the Nebraska Medical Center in critical condition with severe head injuries and a pelvic fracture. He died later in the evening. The boy and his family had been visiting relatives at a nearby residence when the accident happened. Police say speed and alcohol were not factors in the collision.




>>Woman Who Drowned Puppy At Airport Gets Probation

(Grand Island, NE)   --   A Florida woman receives two years of probation for drowning a three-week-old puppy in a Nebraska airport toilet. Cynthia Anderson, of Edgewater, Florida, was sentenced Thursday in Grand Island. She pleaded no contest in May to cruelly neglecting an animal, resulting in its death.  During Thursday's hearing, the 57-year-old Anderson apologized for her actions and pleaded for mercy and probation. Anderson was barred from boarding a January 23rd flight at the Central Nebraska Regional Airport because the puppy was so young and wasn't properly contained. Authorities say she then was seen entering the restroom. Another woman soon reported finding the Doberman puppy dead in a toilet.




>> Governor, Lt. Governor to lead Nebraska trade missions to Japan

(Lincoln, NE)  --  Governor Pete Ricketts and Lt. Governor Mike Foley are traveling to Japan in September for back-to-back foreign trade missions. The governor's office announced Thursday that Foley will lead a delegation September 9th-11th to promote Nebraska's beef and pork products in the country. Ricketts will lead a separate delegation of state business leaders to the annual Midwest U-S.-Japan Association Conference in Tokyo, from September. 12th-16th. The trade mission is the second of the governor's administration. Ricketts traveled to Europe in June.


>>Mother Convicted Of Child Abuse

(Columbus, NE) - A 21-year-old Columbus mother has been convicted on child abuse. Jodie Shelly will be sentenced August 31st after pleading no contest to two counts of misdemeanor negligent child abuse. Shelly's boyfriend, 24-year-old Ryan Roberts, was sentenced in May to five years in prison.



Missouri State News (11am update) 7/31/15



>>Four Million Dollars In State Fairground Upgrades Panned




(Sedalia, MO)  --  The Missouri State Fairgrounds is slated to undergo some major improvements. The four million dollars to fund the major facelift were approved through the “Build Missouri” initiative and the Legislature. State Fair Director Mark Wolfe says several of the buildings qualify for the national register of historic places. Renovations are planned for the Womans Building, Coliseum, and west campgrounds. The state fair is August 13th through the 23rd in Sedalia and Wolfe says the improvements will begin after the fair ends.







>>State Patrol Whistleblower's Attorney Makes Conflict Claim In Drowning Case




(Kansas City, MO)  --  The lawyer for a State Highway Patrol trooper who criticized the agency after a handcuffed Iowa man fell from a patrol boat and drowned in the Lake of the Ozarks says it is a conflict for state Attorney General Chris Koster to represent police in a lawsuit involving his client. Koster is representing several troopers in a lawsuit related to the drowning of Brandon Ellingson. Because Sergeant. Randy Henry is a witness for the plaintiffs, attorney Chet Pleban claims Koster's office is "representing everybody who is at odds" with Henry. Pleban has filed a conflict-of-interest motion in the case. The patrol has said it intends to demote Henry.





>> Springfield Man Seeks Settlement In Suit Involving Young Son's Death



(Springfield, MO)  --  The father of a four-year-old boy killed in a fall from a third-story window last year in downtown Springfield is asking a judge to sign off on a 100-thousand dollar settlement of his wrongful-death lawsuit. Patrick Twibell filed the lawsuit Monday in Greene County, a day before the settlement was proposed. The lawsuit and police say Kayla Boyd was hosting four-year-old Ashton Twibell as a guest when the boy tumbled out an open apartment window. Boyd has denied that any negligence on her part caused the boy's death. Patrick Twibell's lawsuit has sought compensation for medical and funeral costs and expenses, and any other damages.






>> Coalition Wants $15 An Hour Minimum Wage Put On Ballot




(Kansas City, MO)  --  A Kansas City group made up of civil rights and social justice organizations is demanding the city place its initiative petition seeking a 15-dollar an hour minimum wage on the November ballot. The group had enough signatures in May for a ballot measure. The petitioners and rival business advocates have held numerous discussions over the summer with the City Council but could never reach a compromise on an acceptable minimum wage. A coalition spokesperson says the gradual increase to 13-dollars an hour supported by the City Council wasn't enough. The petitioners and local business leaders are dissatisfied with the City Council's July 16th vote to raise the base wage to eight dollars, 50 cents an hour on August 24th with gradual increases toward raising the wage to 13-dollars an hour by 2020.


>> Texas-Based Company asks Missouri to rethink multistate power line


(Jefferson City, MO)   --   A Houston, Texas-based company is asking Missouri utility regulators to reconsider their rejection of a proposed high-voltage power line that was planned for a multistate wind energy project. Clean Line Energy wants the Missouri Public Service Commission to rehear its application to build a two-point-two billion dollar transmission line to carry Kansas wind power across Missouri to eastern power grids.

World/National News (11 am Update) 7/31/15


Army Pressing To Meet Recruitment Goal  

(Washington, DC)  --   The U-S Army is nearly 14 percent short of the recruits it will need to fill its ranks, marking the first time in six years — and only the third in the last 20 — that it may fall short of its recruiting goal for the year. Major General Jeffrey Snow, the Army’s top officer for recruiting, said in an interview with ‘USA Today that it is difficult to attract young men and women to the active-duty Army in an improving economy, but he expressed confidence that recruiters would hit the goal of 59-thousand new recruits when the fiscal year ends September 30th.



Californians Get Serious About Water Conservation

(Sacramento, CA)  -- Californians are battling a record drought in the state by cutting their water usage 27-point-three percent in June. Governor Jerry Brown had set a target of 25 percent for the first month of mandatory restrictions. State officials say the number indicate that Californians understand the seriousness of the state's historic drought, now in its fourth year. California's largest cities — Los Angeles, San Diego, San Jose and San Francisco — all met their cutback targets. Last month was California's hottest June on record, indicating the massive drop in water use resulted from cutback efforts.



Six Stabbed At Jerusalem Gay Pride Parade

(Jerusalem) --  Six people are recovering from stab wounds after being attacked at a gay pride parade in Jerusalem. Authorities say two of the victims are in serious condition. Police say an Orthodox Jew who stabbed marchers at a Jerusalem gay pride parade 10 years ago launched another knife attack at the same type of parade in the same city Thursday. Israeli police say the attacker was released from prison three weeks ago after serving a 10-year prison sentence for stabbing and wounding three marchers at a Jerusalem gay pride parade in 2005.


Executives Face Criminal Charges Over Fukushima Disaster

(Tokyo)   --  A judicial panel in Japan says that three former utility executives should face criminal charges and stand trial for their alleged negligence in the Fukushima nuclear disaster. The committee voted in favor of indicting the chairman of Tokyo Electric Power Company at the time of the crisis, along with two other former executives.  The 11-member committee's second decision supporting the indictment overrides Tokyo prosecutors' two earlier decisions to drop the case, forcing the three men to be charged with professional negligence.  It will be the first criminal case from the nuclear disaster to be tried in court. The committee said the three men neglected to take sufficient measures even though they were fully aware of the risk of a major tsunami at the Fukushima plant.

Wisconsin State News 11am Update - 7/31/15

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Jul 31, 2015
Wheeler News: Wisconsin State News 11am Update

Brewers Lose Parra

(Milwaukee, WI)  --  The Milwaukee Brewers traded away one of baseball's hottest hitters this morning, hours before the Major League trading deadline. The Brewers sent Gerardo Parra to the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for pitching prospect Zach Davies. The Crew has never been in contention this season, so they were long expected to trade away stars for higher-level prospects who would make the big leagues sooner than if Milwaukee had drafted them. Last night, Milwaukee sent Carlos Gomez and starter Mike Fiers to Houston for four of the Astros' top prospects. Earlier this month, third baseman Aramis Ramirez was shipped off to Pittsburgh in exchange for a Double-"A" pitcher. Parra currently has a career-high 14-game hitting streak. He's among the top hitters in the National League with a .328 average. The 22-year-old Davies is 5-and-6 in Triple-"A" this year.
(Stations: This is new, please pass on to your Sports Director)



Stormy Weather On The Way

(Undated)  --  It's been a while since we've had heavy thunderstorms in Wisconsin -- but that could change this weekend. The National Weather Service says a few storms are possible in far northern Wisconsin this afternoon and tonight, with a chance for gusty winds. The rest of the state may not see anything until late tomorrow and tomorrow night. The Weather Service says parts of western Wisconsin could see hail and damaging winds late tomorrow and into Sunday. There's a lesser chance for severe weather in the eastern part of the state, but Metro Milwaukee expects two rounds of rain over the weekend. Summerlike temperatures will continue well into next week, with highs generally in the 80s.



Wisconsin Bill Would Ban Exotic Pets

(Madison, WI)  --  It would be illegal to own an exotic animal as a pet, under a bill being introduced by a Wisconsin Senate Republican. Van Wanggaard of Racine said he drafted the measure before the case of elusive Milwaukee lion grabbed worldwide headlines. But the hub-bub over the lion motivated him to move forward with it. Wanggaard says exotic animals would not be allowed in residential areas under his measure. Those who already own such pets could keep them until they die -- but they'd have to get permits for them.



Couple Dies In Bayfield County Crash

(Drummond, WI)  --  Authorities in far northern Wisconsin are investigating the deaths of a 63-year-old man and his wife in a one-vehicle crash. Bayfield County sheriff's deputies say the man drove his vehicle into a ditch, where it hit a culvert before rolling over. The crash happened yesterday on a town road near Drummond. Both victims died at the scene.



Milwaukee Murder Victim Identified

(Milwaukee, WI)  --  Milwaukee's latest murder victim is publicly identified as 21-year-old Montravis Johnson. Police said he was shot to death Wednesday night during a dispute with two teens. Officers caught up with the suspects and arrested them after a short chase on foot. Two males ages 17 and 18 await possible charges.



Bicyclists Converge For Vets Memorial Fundraiser

(Neillsville, WI)  --  Weekend motorists should not be surprised if they pass a large group of bicyclists. Riders from throughout Wisconsin are taking part in the 31st annual Bicycle Tour to the Highground Veterans Memorial near Neillsville. About 40 cyclists are in each of five groups, going 150-to-300 miles. Organizer Theresa Hebert says they'll meet at the Highground close to eleven on Sunday morning, and folks are invited to greet them. The cyclists are taking pledges and donations in the Highground's largest annual fundraiser. Hebert says they range from 8-to-60 years old. The tour has raised 40-thousand dollars in past years. Organizers hope to surpass that amount this time.
(Thanks Terry Pezl, WSAU, Wausau)

Wisconsin State Sports 11am Update - 7/31/15 - Adds Parra Trade

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Jul 31, 2015
Wheeler News: Wisconsin State Sports 11am Update
===Updated From Learfield Wire Services Test Version, Includes Parra Trade===

Brewers Trade Parra For Pitching Prospect

(Milwaukee, WI)  --  The Milwaukee Brewers traded one of baseball's hottest hitters this morning, just hours before the 3 p-m non-waiver deadline. The Brewers sent Gerardo Parra to the Baltimore Orioles in exchange for pitching prospect Zach Davies.  The Crew has never been in contention this season, so they were long expected to trade away stars for higher-level prospects who would make the big leagues sooner than if Milwaukee had drafted them.  Last night, Milwaukee sent Carlos Gomez and starter Mike Fiers to Houston for four of the Astros' top prospects. Earlier this month, third baseman Aramis Ramirez was shipped off to Pittsburgh in exchange for a Double-"A" pitcher.  Parra currently has a career-high 14-game hitting streak. He's among the top hitters in the National League with a .328 average. The 22-year-old Davies is 5-and-6 in Triple-"A" this year.


Milwaukee Brings Back Schafer, Herrera


(Milwaukee, WI)   --  Outfielder Logan Schafer and utility player Elian Herrera are back with the Brewers.  They were called up last night from Triple-"A" Colorado Springs to replace Carlos Gomez and Mike Fiers -- who were traded to Houston for four of the Astros' top prospects. With Gerardo Parra traded today, G-M Doug Melvin says Shane Peterson could see more action in center field between starters Khris Davis in left and Ryan Braun in right.  The prospects in the Gomez trade all ranked in the Top-15 in Houston's minor league organization.  The trade-depleted Brewers will try to even their series with the playoff-hopeful Chicago Cubs tonight at Miller Park. Right-hander Taylor Jungmann starts for the Crew against Cubs' veteran Jason Hammel.


Penultimate Weekend Begins In Northwoods
(Undated)  --  The Northwoods League opens its second-to-last weekend of the regular season tonight, and the second playoff spot in the South Division is still up for grabs. It appears that Kenosha will win the divison crown for both halves, and second-place Green Bay has a half-game lead over La Crosse in the overall standings with ten days left. If Saint Cloud keeps its current lead in the North, they'll face first half champion Willmar in those divisional finals which will be played the week of August 10th. Tonight's schedule has Green Bay hosting Madison. Kenosha is in Wausau to play Wisconsin. La Crosse travels to Willmar. Wisconsin Rapids hosts Lakeshore. Eau Claire is at home against Rochester.

Packers Still Look Forward To London Game
(Green Bay, WI)  --  The Green Bay Packers still hope to play a regular season game in London. But it won't happen this year, and probably not next year. The Jacksonville Jaguars will go across the pond for the fourth year in a row in 2016. There's been talk that Green Bay would be its opponent in London -- but Jaguars' president Mark Lamping says they'd rather play the Pack at Jacksonville's own house. Lamping said the Jags play Green Bay so infrequently, and they have such a national following that he wants local Floridians to see them. Meanwhile, the Packers were in their second practice at training camp this morning.

State NASCAR Drivers In Two Races At Pocono
(Long Pond, PA)  --  Wisconsin NASCAR drivers are at the Pocono Raceway for a pair of events this weekend. Matt Kenseth of Cambridge will try to improve on his Number-seven standing in the Sprint Cup series, when he competes in the Windows-Ten 400 on Sunday. Qualifying is tonight. Paul Menard, who's 13th in the point totals, is also entered along with Travis Kvapil of Janesville and Beloit-born Danica Patrick. Kvapil is also entered in the Camping World Truck Series race tonight, the Pocono Mountains-150. He's 19th in the truck standings, while fourth-place Johnny Sauter of Necedah is also entered. No Wisconsin drivers are in the Xfinity Series' race in Newton Iowa.

Bucks Forward Antetokounmpo In NBA Africa Game
(Johannesburg, South Africa)  --  Milwaukee Bucks' forward Giannis Antetokounmpo says he's been too busy for sightseeing, as he gets ready to play tomorrow in the N-B-A's Africa Game in Johannesburg. The 20-year-old Antetokounmpo will play for Team Africa against a group of N-B-A stars. It's the 13th annual "Basketball Without Borders" charity game. Antetokounmpo says he looks forward to playing under San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich. Lionel Hollins is coaching a squad of other international N-B-A players. Giannis' parents were from Nigeria before moving to Greece -- and that's why the third-year Bucks' pro is on the home African squad. Former Milwaukee forward Luc Mbah a Moute is also on Team Africa. He's from Cameroon.

Wisconsin State News 7am Update - 7/31/15

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Jul 31, 2015
Wheeler News: Wisconsin State News 7am Update

Wisconsin Senators Help Keep Highway Dollars Flowing

(Washington, DC) -- Highway construction will keep going after midnight, thanks in part to Wisconsin's U-S senators. Republican Ron Johnson and Democrat Tammy Baldwin both voted for a stop-gap measure that keeps federal highway dollars flowing for another three months. Yesterday's vote was 91-to-4 to send the bill to President Obama, while Congress tries to work out disagreements on a longer-term package. The compromise drops the revival of the U-S Export-Import Bank, which Baldwin had pushed for. Both Wisconsin senators also supported a six-year highway bill. It passed 65-to-34, but the House won't take it up until after the August recess. Baldwin helped add several safety measures, including a plan for railroads to respond to severe spills from oil trains like those which go through Wisconsin from the Bakken oil fields. House Republicans, led by Janesville's Paul Ryan, are working on a longer-term highway solution with revenues from a tax change on corporate profits made overseas.



USDA Sets Fall Strategy On Bird Flu

(Washington, DC) -- The U-S-D-A vows to be ready for a return of the avian flu in Wisconsin and the Upper Midwest this fall. Deputy Administrator John Clifford tells the House Agriculture Sub-committee his agency has met with state and poultry industry leaders to plan for new outbreaks. Clifford says there are several keys -- including what he calls a "shared responsibility" for bio-security. He says farmers need to wash equipment, limit the individuals on their properties, and limit contact with wild birds. Once an avian flu case strikes, Clifford says it's critical to eradicate the rest of a farm's poultry as fast as possible. In his words, "The longer we take to depopulate sick birds, the more virus they produce." The agency is also undecided on using an H-5 vaccine that's been stockpiled, due to concerns from trading partners.



Zimbabwe Seeks To Put Twin Cities Lion Killer On Trial

(Harare, Zimbabwe) -- Zimbabwe wants Minnesota's Walter Palmer to return to that country, to stand trial for killing a protected research lion. Zimbabwe's climate minister told reporters this morning the Twin Cities dentist violated its laws -- and he asked U-S authorities to extradite him so he can be held accountable. Palmer's whereabouts were not known as of yesterday. Federal wildlife authorities in this country are investigating Palmer's actions. He said he didn't know he did anything wrong when he shot Cecil on July first during a guided hunt. The head of Zimbabwe's safari industry association tells the Minneapolis Star-Tribune that bribes could have been involved. That's because Palmer's local guide did not have the proper hunting licenses and permits. Palmer has a felony record in Wisconsin, for lying about the location of a bear he shot in 2008.



Ex-Milwaukee County Board Chair Heads Working Families Group

(Milwaukee, WI) -- The head of the Milwaukee County Board has left that post, so she can take over a new group that seeks to help working families statewide. Marina Dimitrijevic (dih-me-tree-ay'-vik) starts her new role today as executive director of the Wisconsin Working Families Party. It's a coalition of community and labor groups that will recruit political candidates who support policies that benefit working people. She says they'll focus on the Milwaukee area first, and then branch out statewide. Dimitrijevic stepped down yesterday as the Milwaukee County Board chair. She'll stay in her elected post as a county supervisor at least until next spring -- when the County Board downsizes from full-time to part-time.



Plea Deal Hinges On Testifying Against Defendant's Husband

(Rhinelander, WI) -- A Tomahawk woman will get a break from prosecutors if she testifies against her ex-husband in a 12-year-old murder case. Thirty-three year old LaToya Wolf has struck a plea deal with Oneida County prosecutors on her own charge of being a party to homicide. She and her ex, Shannon Wolf, are both accused in the drowning death of Kenneth Wells under a Rhinelander bridge in 2003. Circuit Judge Michael Bloom has accepted LaToya's plea deal, which drops her charge to second-degree intentional homicide. Prosecutors have recommended that she get 12 years in prison and 13 years of extended supervision. The judge will have the final say on that November 6th. Shannon Wolf is scheduled to go on trial October 15th unless he, too, strikes a plea deal. The cause of Wells' death was unknown for years, until Rhinelander police re-opened the case and charged the Wolfs.
(Thanks Ken Krall, WXPR, Rhinelander)



Falling TV Kills Four-Year-Old Milwaukee Boy

(Milwaukee, WI) -- An autopsy is scheduled today for a four-year-old Milwaukee boy killed after a T-V fell on him. The county medical examiner said the boy was apparently trying to a load a D-V-D into a T-V that was not fastened down -- and the set fell on him. It happened yesterday at a home on Milwaukee's south side.

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Minnesota Wire: News 7am Summary - 7/31/15

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Jul 31, 2015
Minnesota Wire: News 7am Summary

U-S Steel Says Worst of Global Steel Crisis May Be Past But Challenges Remain

(Mountain Iron, MN) -- U-S Steel officials say the worst of the global storm is likely past but they and the industry still face "significantly challenging" times. The company, which owns the Minntac and Keetac taconite operations on the Iron range, reported a loss of 261-million-dollars in the second quarter, or one-dollar-79-cents a share. U-S Steel sales fell 34 percent during the quarter to two-point-nine billion dollars while steel shipments fell 23 percent. Officials still say the face aggressive competition from imported steel which is unfairly traded – or dumped – into the U-S. C-E-O Mario Longhi says most Minntac employees could be back on the job sometime in August but the Keetac layoffs will continue.”


Hopkins Woman Charged with Stealing $150,000 from Estate Sale Clients

(Hopkins, MN) -- A Hopkins woman who handled many estate sales in the west metro area has been charged with stealing nearly 150-thousand dollars from her clients. Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman says 71-year-old Mary Jane Thompson has been charged with theft after she didn't give 148-thousand dollars to her clients from the sale of their property. Freeman says the reason that the woman who had built a solid business as M.J. & Associates doing moving and estate sales for many years suddenly started to cheat her clients is not clear, but those clients were counting on the money and he will now”prosecute her vigorously.” Freeman says Thompson even pulled the scam on a longtime friend.


Minimum Wage Goes Up Saturday

(St. Paul, MN) -- Minnesota’s large employer minimum-wage rate rises to nine-dollars an hour beginning August first -- the state’s second of three annual minimum-wage increases put into law in 2014. Governor Mark Dayton says “Minnesotans who work full time should be able to earn enough money to lift their families out of poverty and achieve the American Dream,” and he contends that the wage increase will improve the lives of more than 288-thousand Minnesotans. The commissioner of the state labor department Ken Peterson says it is good news for Minnesota’s lowest-wage workers and will help them earn more to provide for their families.”


Trout Regulations May be Changing on Vermilion River in Dakota County

(Rosemount, MN) -- The Minnesota D-N-R will hold a meeting in September to talk about proposed changes to regulations for trout on the Vermillion River in Dakota County. The D-N-R is proposing to allow harvest of rainbow trout anywhere on the Vermillion but say all brown trout would need to be immediately released. Currently, both rainbow trout and brown trout can be kept if caught within the city of Farmington. The Vermillion’s rainbow trout are stocked annually, while brown trout reproduce there naturally. The proposal under consideration also would extend the trout season.


DNR Recommends Private Landowners Clear Deadfalls After Severe Storm

(Brainerd, MN) -- The recent storm in the Brainerd area caused major damage to state lands as well as private forest lands. While landowners are not required to clean up downed trees and debris on private property, the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources is them to consider salvaging and replacing damaged areas. Officials say it’s important to regenerate the forest and reduce the potential for wildfires, insect outbreaks and diseases. Working in storm-damaged areas is dangerous, though, so the D-N-R strongly recommends that only professional loggers or tree care companies do the work.


Franken Provisions Included in Senate Energy Bill

(Washington, DC) -- Several key measures written by a Minnesota lawmaker were included in a package that cleared the Senate Energy Committee with bipartisan support. U-S Senator Al Franken wrote portions of the legislation intended to help bolster the reliability and resiliency of the energy grid and ramp up the deployment of clean energy technologies and creating new jobs in Minnesota. Senator Franken says that “If we want to compete in the global economy, we need to invest in modern energy systems but we’re falling behind” Congress has not passed large-scale energy legislation in eight years. The bills would also fund conservation projects across the country, including Voyageurs National Park and the Minnesota Valley National Wildlife Refuge.


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Minnesota Wire: Sports Morning Summary - 7/31/15

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Jul 31, 2015
Minnesota Wire: Sports Morning Summary

Twins Snap Slide

(Minneapolis, MN) -- Eddie Rosario finished a single shy of the cycle and drove in three runs to help the Minnesota Twins snap a four-game skid with a 9-5 victory over the Seattle Mariners on Thursday night. Aaron Hicks and Brian Dozier also homered for the Twins, who had lost 10 of their previous 12 games. Phil Hughes (10-6) gave up five runs on 10 hits and struck out five in five innings and Joe Mauer extended his hitting streak to 11 games.


Twins Looking To Streak

(Minneapolis, MN) -- Hot off of last night’s win the Twins will look for a modest two game win streak to help improve their place in the Wild Card chase. Last night’s win broke up a four game losing streak and was just their third win in the last 11 games. Tonight it will be Tommy Milone on the mound for the Twins with a first pitch set for 7:10 p-m from Target Field


Price Is Right for Toronto

(Toronto, Ontario) -- Toronto acquired All-Star left-hander David Price from the Detroit Tigers on Thursday, the second major move in less than a week by the Blue Jays as they chase their first postseason appearance since 1993. After obtaining slugging shortstop Troy Tulowitzki from Colorado, the Blue Jays tried to shore up their rotation by adding Price, likely the top remaining starting pitcher on the market.


Blue Jays Top Royals

(Toronto, Ontario) -- Dioner Navarro hit a two-run home run, Russell Martin and Josh Donaldson added solo shots and Toronto beat Kansas City. The Blue Jays, who acquired star pitcher David Price from Detroit earlier in the day, have homered in 12 consecutive games since the All-Star break, their longest streak of the season. Marco Estrada (8-6) allowed two runs and three hits in 5 2-3 innings. Estrada left after Lorenzo Cain's two-out single in the sixth ended his run of 15 straight outs. Brett Cecil came on and retired Eric Hosmer. LaTroy Hawkins pitched the seventh, Aaron Sanchez worked the eighth and Roberto Osuna finished for his sixth save.


Tigers Deal Soria

(Cincinnati, OH) -- The Pittsburgh Pirates made another move to upgrade
their bullpen on Thursday night, acquiring right-hander Joakim Soria from the Detroit Tigers for a minor leaguer. The 31-year-old Soria was 3-1 with 23 saves and a 2.85 ERA in 43 appearances with Detroit this season. He didn't allow a run in 13 of his last 14 appearances. The deal was made a few hours after the Pirates got versatile reliever Joe Blanton from Kansas City for cash. Soria will move into a setup role in a bullpen that already ranks among the league's best. Pittsburgh's 2.71 bullpen ERA ranked second to St. Louis for the NL lead.


Vikings Training Camp

(Mankato, MN) -- The Minnesota Vikings aren’t even through their first week of Training Camp yet yesterday enjoyed a day off. Now today, the team resumes workouts on the campus of Minnesota State University in Mankato. Their Friday begins with a morning walk thru at 10:30 followed by a full pads workout in the afternoon at 2:45.


Vikes Under the Lights

(Mankato, MN) -- Tomorrow night the Minnesota Vikings will practice under the lights at Blakeslee Field at 7:15 p-m. The evening will kick off with a performance from the Minnesota Vikings Cheerleaders and a send-off by fans and alumni for 2015 Hall of Fame inductee Mick Tingelhoff who will be officially enshrined on August 8th in Canton, OH. Fans are encouraged to watch practice in Blakeslee Stadium and to stick around for the first introduction of the 2015 Minnesota Vikings, followed by the annual fireworks show at approximately 9:45 p-m.


Dieng To Play in Africa

(Johannesburgh, Africa) -- Leading up to the N-B-A’s first game in Africa on August 1st, N-B-A and F-I-B-A players, legends and coaches will participate in the 13th edition of Basketball without Borders Africa. The N-B-A and F-I-B-A’s global basketball development and community outreach program will take place July 29th through August 1st at the American International School of Johannesburg in South Africa. NBA Africa Game 2015 will take place at Ellis Park Arena in Johannesburg. BWB Africa will gather the top 59 players from across Africa born in 1998 to learn from a number of N-B-A stars including the Timberwolves Gorgui Dieng who was born in Senegal.


Timberwolves Caravan Next Week

(Minneapolis, MN) -- The Minnesota Timberwolves are set to embark on the 2015 Timberwolves Caravan. The Caravan, headlined by Wolves guard Tyus Jones, hits the road on Tuesday, August 4th and makes stops in Alexandria, Mankato and Rochester. The Caravan features a variety of activities held in communities included in the tour. Among the events slated for the Caravan are free basketball clinics with Jones and appearances by Timberwolves mascot Crunch. The clinics are open to participants ages five to 18 and no registration is required. Along with Jones, Wolves assistant coaches Sam Mitchell and Ryan Saunders are also participating in the Caravan. Jones, Mitchell and Saunders will be available for media interviews at the conclusion of each clinic.


Lynx Host Atlanta

(Minneapolis, MN) -- For the Minnesota Lynx to land center Sylvia Fowles they needed the help of Atlanta to pull off a three team trade with Chicago. To complete the deal the Lynx sent Reshanda Gray and Damiris Dantas to Atlanta and they’ll return to Target Center for the first time as visitors to face their former team. As for the Lynx, their new center scored 11 points in her debut on Wednesday night in an 82-76 win over Los Angeles. The Lynx have won four straight and enter tonight 13-and-four on the season. Lynx and Dream tip-off at 7 p-m tonight from Target Center.


Duluth To Host HDM

(Duluth, MN) -- The Minnesota Wild, along with FOX Sports North and Minnesota Hockey, yesterday officially announced that the outdoor games for the 10th Annual Hockey Day Minnesota will take place on Saturday, February 6th at Duluth's Bayfront Park along the shore of Lake Superior. Proceeds of the event will benefit Duluth area youth hockey programs. Year 2016 will mark a decade of Hockey Day Minnesota celebrations. The first game will feature a battle between Section 7-A rivals the Duluth Denfeld Hunters and the Eveleth-Gilbert Golden Bears. The second game will feature a state championship rematch between Duluth East and Lakeville North. Hockey Day Minnesota 2016 will be capped off as the Minnesota Wild face off against the St. Louis Blues at 7 in St. Louis.


3M Championshp Preview

(Blaine, MN) -- Kenny Perry will defend his title at the 3M Championship this week at T-P-C Twin Cities in Blaine. Perry, with a birdie putt on the final hole, defeated two-time champion Bernhard Langer by one shot last year. Perry shot 65-63-65 for a 23-under total. Five golfers making their 3M Championship debut finished in the top 10: Jeff Maggert, Marco Dawson, Vijay Singh, Paul Goydos, and Wes Short Jr. Goydos was making his Champions Tour debut and Short closed with a 62. Three-time 3M Championship winner Hale Irwin, at 69, bettered his age in all three rounds, shooting 68-66-68 for 14 under. T-P-C Twin Cities is a par 72 with the tournament tees measuring 7,100 yards. It was designed by Arnold Palmer.


Ohio State Suspends Four For Opener

(Columbus, OH) -- Reigning national champion Ohio State is suspending four players for its season-opener at Virginia Tech on September 7th. Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year Joey Bosa, running backs Jalin Marshall and Dontre Wilson, and wide receiver Corey Smith will miss game one for violating athletic department policy. Head coach Urban Meyer at Big Ten Media Days said he was behind the decision and they're not going to let the suspensions bring them down.


Big Ten Preseason Players List Announced

(Rosemont, IL) -- The Big Ten Conference announced its fifth annual football preseason Players to Watch list, with 11 players earning recognition. A select media panel voted for the top five players each from the East and West Division, with one additional honoree this year due to a tie. Michigan State and Ohio State each had a pair of players represent the East Division. Spartans defensive end Shilique Calhoun and quarterback Connor Cook were honored, alongside Buckeyes defensive end Joey Bosa and running back Ezekiel Elliott. Penn State defensive tackle Anthony Zettel completed the East Division honorees. Calhoun was named to the Big Ten Football Players to Watch list for the second consecutive season. Here is the complete list:

EAST DIVISION
Connor Cook, QB, Michigan State
Shilique Calhoun, DE, Michigan State
Joey Bosa, DE, Ohio State
Ezekiel Elliott, RB, Ohio State
Anthony Zettel, DT, Penn State

WEST DIVISION*
Drew Ott, DE, Iowa
Maliek Collins, DT, Nebraska
De’Mornay Pierson-El, WR, Nebraska
Justin Jackson, RB, Northwestern
Michael Caputo, S, Wisconsin
Corey Clement, RB, Wisconsin

*Additional honoree due to tie

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falness