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Minnesota seeing an increase in calls for suicide prevention and crisis support

By |2022-09-26T05:43:55-05:00September 26th, 2022|

Minnesota has seen an increase in calls for suicide prevention and crisis support since mid-July following the rollout of the new nationwide 988 Suicide and Crisis Lifeline. Dr. Dan Reidenberg Executive Director of Minnesota-based SAVE (Suicide Awareness Voices of Education: "It's taken a long time to build the system and it's gonna take even longer for us to see how it goes it's gonna take years in fact before we know how effective it's working." The lifeline and Minnesota’s four call centers offer support 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

BCA Still Investigating Swatting Incidents at 14 Minnesota Schools

By |2022-09-26T05:34:44-05:00September 26th, 2022|

Still no word on who made 14 'swatting' calls to Minnesota schools last Wednesday.  Minnesota B-C-A investigators say it appears they all came from the same suspect.  Mankato West High School was one of the schools that received a hoax report of an active shooter: :What was very helpful for us is that we had a school resource officer in the building at that time when the call came in. So we were able to dispel pretty quickly the specific details that came in with that call because the school resource officer was able to say, yeah  that's not true." Mankato [...]

BCA warns Minnesotans of deadly rainbow fentanyl

By |2022-09-26T05:22:54-05:00September 26th, 2022|

Law enforcement is warning Minnesotans about a dangerous new drug. It's called rainbow fentanyl and... "This is highly concerning to us and some of you may have seen this as a national trend but these are counterfeit fentanyl pills that are made in bright colors that look like candy and appeal to children." Drew Evans with the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension says the pills were recently discovered in the Mankato area by the Minnesota River Valley Drug Task Force.

Republicans want hearings on Walz administration handling of “Feeding our Future” fraud

By |2022-09-23T06:16:50-05:00September 23rd, 2022|

Republicans are demanding House Democrats hold hearings on the Walz administration's response to a fraud scheme that prosecutors say stole 250 million dollars in government funding.  The governor says the state stopped payments to "Feeding Our Future," but they sued and a judge ordered payments be resumed: "We were threatened with going to jail.  We stuck with it, we got the FBI out there and we have 48 people under indictment." Walz blames the judge, but Republican Senator Roger Chamberlain says the attorney general and Walz administration could have appealed: "There was a lot of evidence to show and suggest that [...]

Gov Walz says public safety a top priority

By |2022-09-23T06:14:27-05:00September 23rd, 2022|

Facing criticism from his opponent Dr. Scott Jensen and other Republican leaders, Governor Walz says public safety is among his top priorities. Walz was joined by public safety officials Thursday and said of law enforcement... "They're short-handed but that doesn't stop them. Our job as Minnesotans is to rally around this, rally around as communities do the things we need to know that safe tell our young people that protecting their neighbors is a damn noble profession and that being in there and working hand in hand together is a noble profession." Dr. Jensen says there's a "culture of crime and [...]

Authorities investigating more than a dozen “swatting” reports of false school emergencies

By |2022-09-22T06:50:44-05:00September 22nd, 2022|

The Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) is investigating after reports of several "swatting" calls claiming false emergencies at Minnesota schools. "So far we've had reporting into the BCA's Minnesota fusion center from 14 different schools across the state of Minnesota-- just given the geographic locations of the schools we have no doubt there's additional schools that we're just not aware of yet in Minnesota where this has occurred." The BCA's Drew Evans says officials believe it's an individual who is making the calls and local and federal authorities are investigating. A Mankato school was one of several that were the [...]

This is Rail Safety Week

By |2022-09-22T06:48:49-05:00September 22nd, 2022|

In Minnesota each year on average, 30 people are killed or injured in grade crossing and trespassing incidents. It's Rail Safety Week and Sheryl Cummings with Operation Lifesaver says… "In Minnesota, we actually are doing a relatively good job but we still believe that even one fatality or serious injury changes the lives of entire communities and it's just one too many." Cummings says around 2,100 North Americans are killed or seriously injured each year when they engage in unsafe behavior around tracks and trains.

Swatting scam prompts message from BCA

By |2022-09-22T06:46:50-05:00September 22nd, 2022|

In the wake of Wednesday's reports of several "swatting" calls claiming false emergencies at Minnesota schools, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) has this reminder: "Our See it, say it, send it app, is an app that anyone can download to their phone, and it can report suspicious information, and it was designed through grants that we've received to disrupt threats to our schools." The BCA's Drew Evans says if you're in an emergency situation, you should always call 9-1-1 first, then report the incident on the app.

Republicans say Walz administration didn’t fight hard enough to stop payments to “Feeding our Future” program

By |2022-09-22T06:45:00-05:00September 22nd, 2022|

House Republican Minority Leader Kurt Daudt says Governor Tim Walz and the state Education Department didn't fight hard enough to stop payments to the fraudulent "Feeding our Future" program, now the subject of over four-dozen federal indictments.  Daudt says the Walz administration at least should have appealed a judge's decision in a lawsuit that reinstated funding which the state had halted: "If would have known that the program was fraudulent, I would have stopped the payments, period." Reporter:  In defiance of a judge's order? Daudt:   "Of course. The state Education Department says they immediately notified federal officials who ultimately launched an [...]

Report Out on Guns and Suicide

By |2022-09-22T05:14:49-05:00September 22nd, 2022|

For the second year in a row, suicides represent nearly 70 percent of all gun deaths in Minnesota. Those working to stop gun violence hope the new data opens more eyes to a concerning trend and dispels some myths as well. Protect Minnesota Executive Director Rashmi Seneviratne, says many suicides by firearm are concentrated in rural parts of the state and often involve older men. As farming communities deal with economic stress, she says guns handed down from previous generations might still be in the family home: "Past generations have grown up being used to guns for hunting, for food, and [...]

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