On Thursday evening May 26th at 6:47pm the Sheriff's Office responded to a report of a pedestrian that was struck by a vehicle on 8th St. W in the City of Browerville. The driver of the vehicle was eastbound on 8th St. when 8 year old male victim ran from behind a parked car into the traffic lane. The victim was struck and went under the vehicle. Medical treatment was provided at the scene by Deputies and the Browerville Ambulance. The victim was transported to Long Prairie Hospital then flown by North Air Care to Children's Hospital in the metro. The victim's condition is unknown at this time. The incident remains under investigation.
The Minnesota Board of Animal Health is extending the statewide ban on poultry events until Friday, July 1, 2022. Animal health officials first enacted the ban in April and extended it once already to reduce the potential risks of spreading HPAI, also known as bird flu. The ban includes all poultry swaps, fairs, exhibitions and other events where live poultry and susceptible birds are brought together and then disperse. The Board of Animal Health says a small number of recent HPAI detections in new counties is cause for the department to extend the ban, which primarily impacts backyard flock owners and is intended to protect their birds from a potential pathway for the virus to spread at poultry events. As part of the state and federal response, a detection of HPAI in a backyard flock means the owner cannot have any new birds for 150 days following disposal of infected birds. Biosecurity is still the most effective precaution backyard owners can follow to protect their flock. Direct selling of baby poultry is still allowed through private sales, stores, or via mail by National Poultry Improvement Plan authorized sellers. This temporary ban only applies to events where birds congregate and does not apply to poultry products. The H5N1 HPAI outbreak in Minnesota poses a high risk to poultry but low risk to the public. There is no food safety concern for consumers.
A Hill City man has been charged with allegedly fatally shooting his brother and leaving his body in a camper for seven months. The Aitkin County Sheriff's Office states that 48-year-old James Robert Hess was arrested Tuesday morning at his home. He has been charged with the 2nd-degree murder of his 52-year-old brother, William Harold Hess Jr. Hess Jr. was found dead in Aitkin County from a gunshot wound on May 12 in a homemade camper, located west of 380th Avenue in Hill Lake Township. However, police say that Hess Jr. is believed to have been killed in October 2021. Hess made an appearance in Aitkin County District Court Wednesday morning. Bail has been set for $1 million or bond with no conditions, or $500,000 non-cash bond with conditions, or $500,000 cash bail with conditions. He remains in Aitkin County Jail with "additional charges pending," the sheriff's office says.
A man who was recently hired by Essentia Health in Brainerd as their new senior vice president of operations is facing felony charges for allegedly pointing a handgun at two people outside a bar in downtown Brainerd. 41-year-old John Sperrazza was charged Wednesday in Crow Wing County Court with felony second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon, serious felony second-degree assault with a dangerous weapon, and felony threats of violence with reckless disregard. According to the criminal complaint in the case, Sperrazza was at Shep’s Bar and struck up conversation with a group of four people. They all then went to SE’z Bar from there, and the other individuals reported Sperrazza became verbally abusive. The criminal complaint says that later that night in the parking lot, Sperrazza pointed a gun at two of the people in the group. Investigators say a review of surveillance cameras appears to corroborate the reports of the witnesses. Essentia Health announced the hiring of Sperrazza as their new senior vice president of operations in a web postdated March 22nd of this year. According to that post, Sperrazza previously served as the senior vice president of operations for Essentia’s West market, representing areas in North Dakota and Western Minnesota. In a statement from Essentia Health Sperrazza has since been placed on administrative leave.
During the week of May 15th through May 21st, the Todd County Sheriff's Office responded to 215 calls for service. The following were the types of calls: 85 traffic stops, 15 civil process, 9 suspicious activity type complaints, 6 assists to other agencies, 2 farm animals out complaints, 1 domestic / disturbance, 5 traffic complaints, 6 motorist assists, 4 scam complaints, 2 accidents, and 7 welfare checks. Todd County Dispatch received 73 - 911 Calls during the week.
Tuesday's COVID-19 update from the Minnesota Department of Health includes 16,204 newly reported cases and 36 newly reported deaths, including a person aged 25-29 from Dakota County. The state's COVID-19 death toll is now 10,600. Today's report includes data that was reported in a 96-hour holiday period ending at 4 a.m. Monday, Jan. 3, so the numbers are inflated compared to a single day of reporting. Minnesota's test positivity rate on a 7-day rolling average (through Dec. 27) is 12.0%, Anything over 10% puts Minnesota in the high-risk threshold for community transmission of the coronavirus. Through Jan. 3, the number of people with COVID-19 hospitalized in Minnesota was 1,370 – up from the 1,313 reported on Dec. 30. Of those hospitalized, 293 people are in intensive care (up from 283) and 1,077 are in non-ICU care (up from 1,030). The latest hospital capacity data shows there are 30 staffed adult ICU beds available in the entire state – down from 32 on Dec. 30 – and 11 pediatric ICU beds available, which is down from 13 on Dec. 30. Todd county is currently at 5,316 confirmed cases of covid-19 along with 52 deaths.