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MINNESOTA

Native Mob member pleads guilty in homicide

MINNEAPOLIS - A Native Mob member pleaded guilty Friday to killing a fellow gang member, bringing to 20 the number of defendants convicted in a violent regional network.

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Shaun Michael Martinez, also known as Tinez, agreed to a plea arrangement with prosecutors to a term of 43 years, although a federal judge will have final say in a hearing on the length of sentence. A date for the hearing has not been set.

"Members of the Native Mob, like those involved in any street gang, are dangerous to the public at large but also to their own community," United States Attorney B. Todd Jones said in a news release following Martinez's plea. "They prey on the vulnerable, often coercing or enticing young people to join their criminal organizations.

"By doing so, they victimize these youngsters by robbing them of the opportunity to forge a productive future for themselves. As a result, a cycle of crime and violence is allowed to continue. We must break that cycle. It is up to all of us to do our part as a community to put an end to it."

The Native Mob, a well-structured, highly organized gang with influence from the Twin Cities to reservations throughout Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wisconsin, started in the 1990s in Minneapolis.

Rehab facility seeks to buy former ski resort

PARK RAPIDS, Minn. -- Program officials of a long-term, treatment facility said they expected to close a deal to buy a defunct ski resort in Hubbard County and sought county blessings to proceed.

Restore House is a faith-based residential chemical dependency treatment facility that operates a six-bed house in Bemidji is seeking to buy the Val Chatel property north of Emmaville.

"I turn away guys every day," Mary Greer of Restore House told the county board.

Restore House has a long waiting list, she said.

The larger facilities at Val Chatel could eventually house 27, possibly more clients.

The facility only houses males now, but Greer said it is eyeing a Lake Hattie resort as a facility to house female clients. The Bemidji house could be converted to a transition facility.

Woman killed in Clay County van rollover

MOORHEAD, Minn - One person was killed and another injured in a one-vehicle crash about around noon Friday north of Moorhead.

The driver of a minivan lost control, veered off the road and rolled a couple of times, said Clay County Sheriff Bill Bergquist.

He said the roads were not icy, and the cause of the accident hasn't been determined.

Bergquist said a female passenger in the vehicle was pronounced dead at the scene. The male driver was taken to Sanford Health in Fargo by helicopter.

Dilworth Fire Department, F-M Ambulance, Minnesota State Patrol and Glyndon Rescue also responded to the accident.

The names of two people involved in the crash haven't been released.

NORTH DAKOTA

Hillsboro center, Sanford finish merger

HILLSBORO, N.D. - Hillsboro Medical Center and Sanford Health have completed a merger that began in April when the two organizations announced a letter of intent.

Effective Jan. 1, Hillsboro Medical Center will be known as Sanford Hillsboro Medical Center. It has 148 employees, 16 beds and is a nonprofit critical access hospital with attached 36-bed long-term care and 16-unit assisted living facilities.

Sanford Health has a clinic located within Hillsboro Medical Center. Drs. Charles Breen and Tim Luithle, and physician's assistant Ann Owens work for the clinic and provide services at the medical center.

An employee and community celebration is set for 4 to 6 p.m. Jan. 9 at the chapel in Sanford Hillsboro Medical Center, located at 12 3rd St. S.E. The public is invited to attend.

Hillsboro is located 40 miles north of Fargo.

(FF, GFH)

Man hurt , highway closed in truck rollover

OAKES, N.D. -- A Hillsboro truck driver was injured in a one-vehicle accident Thursday afternoon that closed a state highway for 90 minutes near the North Dakota-South Dakota border.

James Mooney, 62, was driving a 2002 Kenworth tractor-trailer, hauling fertilizer along N.D. Highway 1 near the state line at about 1:30 p.m., when the accident occurred, according to the North Dakota Highway Patrol.

According to the report, Mooney was southbound on the highway and entering a curve when the truck drifted off the west shoulder of the road. He reportedly overcorrected, causing the truck and trailer to roll.

The vehicle came to rest on its left side across both lanes, with the load of granular fertilizer spilling onto the roadway. Highway 1 was closed for approximately 90 minutes after the accident.

Mooney was transported to Oakes Community Hospital by Oakes Ambulance.

(GFH)

Airport eyes jet service

DICKINSON, N.D. -- Theodore Roosevelt Regional Airport is preparing to offer jet service, even though there has been no official agreement with an airline.

"The Airport Authority is working hard to move forward," Airport Manager Matthew Remynse said, adding that it is trying to get everything in place before an agreement is set so it can hit the ground running should an announcement be made.

Jet service would mean smoother, quicker flights, possibly to more locations, depending on the airline's wishes, he said.

The flight to Denver would take about an 90 minutes on the jet versus 30 to 45 minutes longer on the turbo prop planes, Remynse said.

At Monday's Dickinson City Commission meeting at City Hall, Remynse asked the commission for $50,000 should an announcement be made so the airport can do an environmental assessment for jet service and be up and running as soon as possible. The commission unanimously agreed.

The money will not be spent if TRRA does not get jet service.

"This would be a tremendous economic development boost," Commission President Dennis Johnson said Monday.

(DP)

Meyer named to Heitkamp staff

DICKINSON, N.D. -- U.S. Senator-elect Heidi Heitkamp announced today that former Dickinson legislator Shirley Meyer will be serve on her staff in western North Dakota

Meyer will be based in Dickinson, where she lives with her husband and former North Dakota state senator Dean Meyer.

Shirley Meyer lost her state House seat to Republican Alan Fehr in the November election.

(FCC)

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