May 31 news

RUSHMORE – After a manure spill Wednesday in Nobles County, water samples taken from a gravel pit in Little Rock Township will be sent to the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency for analysis to determine if contamination exists. According to Nobles County Environmental Services Director Wayne Smith, the spill has been contained with a dirt berm and some round bales.

The spill occurred when stockpiled manure slid down a hill into the gravel pit nearby. Tom Kresko, area hydrologist from the Department of Natural Resources, said the spill was contained to the pit and did not overflow to other waterways.

The concern is that if any manure would contaminate the Little Rock River, it would impact the federally-endangered Topeka Shiner minnow and possibly 10 to 15 other species of minnows and fish in the river. Kresko said he did not see any drinking water risk as a result of the manure spill.

Nobles County Attorney Kathleen Kusz said the investigation into the stockpiled manure and subsequent runoff continues, and potential prosecution has not yet been determined.

LAKEFIELD - Facebook helped bring down a Lakefield man suspected of inflicting serious injuries to another last week. Tyler Henning, 26, was arrested May 28 after comments related to the assault of Jeremy Newell, 34, also of Lakefield, appeared on Henning’s Facebook page. Henning is charged with third-degree assault, a felony punishable by up to five years in prison, a maximum fine of $10,000 or both.

Lakefield police and the Lakefield Ambulance Service were called to the intersection of Cherry and Fifth Street North at around 11 p.m. May 23 to a report of an individual on the ground and bleeding. Upon arrival, they found Newell suffering from substantial injuries to his face and head. A witness at the scene reported seeing Newell being assaulted and called 911.

Newell was transported to an area hospital where he was treated for his injuries and released some time later.

In the course of the investigation, Lakefield police came across comments related to the assault posted on Henning’s Facebook page. Based on the posting, the Lakefield Police Department and Jackson County Sheriff’s Office executed a search warrant at 309 Bush St. on May 28. Items of clothing were taken from the home as evidence.

By 4 p.m. that same day, police had Henning in custody. He was taken to the Jackson County Jail to await a formal complaint and an initial court appearance.

SPIRIT LAKE - A Minnesota man accused of breaking into vehicles in Spirit Lake, Iowa faces multiple charges. Spirit Lake police say they received a report around 12:15 a.m. Thursday morning of a suspicious male possibly breaking into vehicles in a parking lot at 1514 Hill Avenue.

Upon investigating, police arrested 22-year-old David Hegg of Ghent, Minnesota charged him with burglary in the 3rd degree, two counts of attempted burglary and carrying a weapon. Hegg was booked into the Dickinson county jail.

SPIRIT LAKE - A 24-year-old Sheldon man has been arrested and charged with theft. Shortly before midnight Saturday, members of the Spirit Lake Police Department located a 2001 Ford Ranger that had been allegedly stolen in Sioux County. The vehicle was found in the driveway at 1509 Erie Avenue.

Upon investigating, a short foot pursuit resulted in the arrest of Kurt Walker. It was also discovered during the investigation that Walker was a recent escapee from the Residential Treatment Facility in Sheldon.

Walker was booked into the Dickinson County Jail on a charge of second degree theft-motor vehicle.

MINNESOTA - Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura is continuing a lawsuit alleging defamation against an ex-Navy SEAL who was killed last February. Ventura filed the suit last year against Chris Kyle, author of “American Sniper,” claiming a California bar fight described in the book defamed him. Kyle was shot and killed at a shooting range near Fort Worth, Texas in February.

Ventura’s lawyers have now asked the federal court to substitute Kyle’s wife, Taya Kyle, as the defendant. In a response filed Wednesday, Taya Kyle’s attorney writes Ventura’s move “comes as a disappointment, but no surprise.”

“American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History,” detailed Kyle’s 150-plus insurgent kills from 1999 to 2009. The book describes a 2006 confrontation with a “celebrity” he nicknamed “Scruff Face,” but never uses Ventura’s name. The newspaper says Kyle later acknowledged he was describing Ventura.

Ventura denies that a fight ever took place. The trial was previously scheduled for Aug. 1.

WORLD - When astronomers analyzed radar readings to create their first maps of 1998 QE2, the big asteroid that's due to sail past Earth today, they were surprised to find that it has a moon twice as big as an ocean liner.

1998 QE2 itself is way bigger: The latest readings from NASA's Deep Space Network antenna in Goldstone, Calif., are consistent with earlier estimates that the asteroid is about 1.7 miles wide. But the moon is hefty as well. Astronomers estimate its diameter at 2,000 feet. That's big enough to wipe out an area of the size of Virginia if it were to strike land.

Fortunately, neither space rock will come any closer than 3.6 million miles, or about 15 times the distance between Earth and the moon, during a flyby that reaches its climax at 4:59 p.m. Eastern Time today.

Even though Earth is in no danger, the close encounter is stirring up interest because it gives astronomers a rare opportunity to see an asteroid up close. Such observations could help NASA plan for efforts as the Osiris-Rex mission, which will bring back a sample from the asteroid Bennu in 2023; and an even more ambitious mission to corral an asteroid by the mid-2020s.


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