Latest Area News Headlines

Law enforcement uses social media to connect with public


WORTHINGTON – Local law enforcement is working hard on conquering social media, hoping to use a variety of ways to get the word out when the public needs to be alerted or when law enforcement needs their help. The Nobles County Sheriff’s Office has maintained a Facebook page since February of last year, and according to Worthington Police Sgt. Brett Wiltrout, the department is in the process of creating a Facebook page of their own, which is expected to be up in February or March.

Nobles County Sheriff Kent Wilkening said they are working on a routine to get the Facebook page...

MnDOT advises no travel in southwest Minnesota


MINNESOTA - As of 11 a.m., the Minnesota Department of Transportation advises no travel in southwestern Minnesota, due to blowing snow and near zero visibility. Officials do not anticipate any interstate or highway closures at this time; however, motorists may encounter brief lane and road closures where crashes occur.

MnDOT snow plow operators are doing their part to make highways safe. Motorists should remember to stay back at least five car lengths behind the plow to stay out of the snow cloud. Also, stay alert for plows that turn or exit frequently. To check road conditions,...

January 22 news


WORTHINGTON – Charges were filed this week in Nobles County District Court against a Worthington man who allegedly stabbed a friend over a video game Friday night. Daniel Bockenstedt, age 25, was charged with first-degree assault -great bodily harm and four counts of second-degree assault.

According to the criminal complaint, authorities were called at approximately 11:30 p.m. Friday about an assault. They found Bockenstedt in the driveway at the scene with a bloody rag in his hand. Bockenstedt said his friend had gotten angry after losing a video game and had grabbed a knife, but...

January 21 news


LAKE WILSON – Once again, blowing snow and high winds caused whiteout conditions throughout the area on Monday, causing several vehicle crashes. On Highway 30 in Murray County, 19-year-old Alexis Esmay of Slayton was eastbound driving a 1999 Chevy Malibu at approximately 4 p.m. when she lost control and entered the ditch, rolling the vehicle. She suffered non-life threatening injuries and was taken to the Murray County Medical Center, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.

LUVERNE – In Rock County at approximately 6:30 p.m., Kongpang Chomnirath, age 53, of Worthington, was...

January 20 news


WORTHINGTON – Some volunteered, or was voluntold, in assistant principal Zach Dingman’s case, peer pressure got to others. Some crazy souls were simply eager to ‘jump’ on board. Whatever their reason, 42 people signed up to launch themselves into the 34 degree water of Lake Okabena to help raise more than $16,000 for the Wayne Klumper Heals fund as part of the 2014 Worthington Winterfest Deep Freeze Dip.

Even with a few weather issues, Winterfest was a fun-filled event this year. The medallion clues were solved by Kelly Nickel and CJ Nelson, who won $100 in Chamber Checks for their...

January 17 news


WORTHINGTON – Yesterday’s weather caused a multitude of traffic crashes, which are still being documented through the Minnesota State Patrol and other area law enforcement entities. Major roads were closed in the early afternoon across southwest Minnesota and other areas due to low visibility.

There was a rollover on eastbound I-90 at 7:20 a.m. in Nobles County, and at 1 p.m., there was a multiple vehicle crash on I-90 in Rock County, but the details have not yet been released. At 2:42 p.m., a semi rear-ended a vehicle on westbound I-90 in Nobles County, again with no details yet...

Winterfest Medallion found in near blizzard conditions


WORTHINGTON – The Winterfest Medallion has been found! CJ Nelson and his fiance Kelly Nickel found the medallion next to the sculpture at Sailboard Beach on Thursday afternoon around 5 p.m.

According to Kelly, the medallion was tucked along the leg of the sculpture, sticking out of the snow barely a quarter of an inch. Much more snow, she said, and it would have been buried.

Kelly is a special education paraprofessional at the middle school, while CJ works for the YMCA. She said it’s been hard to search for medallions in the past because of the school day, but this time the...

January 16 news


WORTHINGTON – The long-standing Penney store in the Northland Mall is on the chopping block. A news release issued Wednesday states the Worthington store is slated to close in May, along with 32 other stores across the country, including one on Iowa.

JCPenney Co. states the closures are part of a turnaround effort to eliminate underperforming stores in order to focus its resources on the company’s highest potential growth areas. Approximately 20 employees from the Worthington store and 2,000 across the board will lose their jobs. Eligible employees will be provided separation...

January 15 news


WORTHINGTON - The Freedom Veterans Memorial Park Board of Directors will hold their annual meeting at 7 p.m. Monday, January 20 at the Worthington Area Chamber of Commerce.

All members of Freedom Veterans Memorial Park are urged to attend. Membership, as defined in the by-laws, is such persons, natural or corporate, who contribute to and assist in the conduct of any of the promotional activities by this corporation.

WORTHINGTON — The Worthington District 518 Community Education Department will offer a four-hour AARP Smart Driver Refresher class on Thursday. The class will...

January 14 news


SIBLEY, Iowa – A few details have been released regarding the fatal crash Saturday morning that took the life of a Bigelow woman. Authorities said Monday that Karlee Gustaf, age 21, was northbound on Highway 60 about three-quarters of a mile south of the Iowa-Minnesota border around 6 a.m. when she hit the rumble strips and over-corrected. Her vehicle slid across the frost-covered road into the median and then rolled, coming to rest in the southbound lane.

The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office and the Iowa State Patrol were still investigating the crash as of Monday.