Regional News

Mayo Clinic in Rochester adds customized plane to air fleet

ROCHESTER, Minn. (AP) — The Mayo Clinic in Rochester has unveiled a customized $8.5 million airplane to transport high-risk patients to its facilities.The Post-Bulletin of Rochester reports ( ) that the Beechcraft King Air 350C is expected to make about 400 transports per year. It has already airlifted patients to Rochester from Montana, Texas, Louisiana and Pennsylvania.

Racine city worker killed when hit by car while on the job

RACINE, Wis. (AP) — A city worker in Racine was killed when he was struck by a vehicle while on the job.Mayor John Dickert says Mark Gates died Wednesday while collecting recyclables, when he was struck by "a speeding vehicle." The Journal Times reports Gates was pinned between a car and a city recycling truck.Gates also was a Baptist pastor.Police did not immediately comment on their investigation.

Time running out for health care signups, special session

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Time is running out to buy health insurance effective for the start of the New Year.Thursday was the final day shoppers who aren't covered through an employer or public program could buy a plan that starts Jan. 1. MNsure says that window closes at midnight.It's not the only major health care deadline looming. Gov. Mark Dayton has asked lawmakers to sign off on a plan to offset massive premium hikes in a special session before Friday.

Palisade man accused of killing infant child by throwing her

PALISADE, Minn. (AP) — A Palisade man is accused of killing his infant daughter by throwing her 12 feet into the air and across a kitchen.Thirty-three-year-old John Peterson is charged with second-degree murder in the November death of the 5-week-old girl, who authorities say suffered head injuries including a skull fracture.

Small E. Iowa town scrambles to save historic former jail

ANDREW, Iowa (AP) — Residents of the small eastern Iowa city of Andrew are scrambling to save a historic but deteriorating former county jail.The Dubuque Telegraph Herald reports ( ) residents gathered Tuesday night to discuss ideas for preserving the stone structure built in 1871. It was Jackson County's jail until 1896, then was used as city jail until 1943.

No charges to be filed in tree-trimming death in Mason City

MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) — The death of a Mason City man found in the street in August has been ruled an accident.The Globe Gazette reports ( ) Mason City Police Lt. Rich Jensen said Wednesday that 65-year-old Dennis Mertz was trying to free a tree branch when he fell on Aug. 11.Mertz fell from a ladder onto the street in the path of tractor-trailer truck, and the back tires of the truck's trailer ran over him.

Iowa casinos want to stop releasing annual audits to public

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A group of Iowa casinos wants to make their annual audits confidential and stop releasing them to the public.The Des Moines Register reports ( ) that 16 of the 19 state-regulated Iowa casinos have joined a lawsuit challenging the release of those financial records.Wes Ehrecke, president of the Iowa Gaming Association, says the audits include trade secrets that shouldn't be released publicly.

Body of missing Lakeland University student found in pond

SHEBOYGAN, Wis. (AP) — The body of a missing Lakeland University student has been found in a pond on school property.The Sheboygan County Sheriff's Office says 18-year-old Kaelin O'Neal was last seen on Sunday morning. His body was found Wednesday and recovered by a dive team.Authorities say his death is still under investigation, but there is nothing to indicate foul play.

Hibbing man sentenced for killing roommate, burning body

VIRGINIA, Minn. (AP) — A Hibbing man has been sentenced to 35 years in prison for killing his former roommate and burning the man's body in an Iron Range mine pit.Nineteen-year-old Dylan Gilbertson pleaded guilty last month to intentional second-degree murder in the May death of 20-year-old Jaysen Greenwood. St. Louis County Attorney Mark Rubin says Gilbertson was sentenced Wednesday.