Ventura wants 'American Sniper' lawsuit to proceed
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura is asking a judge to allow his defamation lawsuit against slain "American Sniper" author Chris Kyle to go forward with Kyle's widow as the defendant.
In the book, Kyle claimed he punched Ventura in 2006 over unpatriotic remarks. Ventura says it never happened.
Ventura's attorneys argued in federal court Monday that he has the right to restore his reputation, and Kyle's estate will continue to profit from book sales.
Kyle's attorneys say if the case proceeds, it will paint Ventura as someone who has no feelings for widows of war heroes.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Arthur Boylan took the arguments under advisement.
Iraq War veteran Eddie Ray Routh is charged in the February killings of Kyle and a friend at a Texas gun range.
Advocates call MNsure enrollment system unfair
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) - Minnesota is hiring people to help residents sign up for health plans through its new online health insurance exchange.
But advocates say the state is discriminating against the poor by paying consumer assistants less to help low-income residents.
MNsure pays assistants $70 for each person enrolled in a commercial health plan. But assistants get only $25 if their enrollee can only afford federally funded Medicaid.
Nonprofit groups tell Minnesota Public Radio that poor applicants are usually the hardest to reach because they work several jobs, move frequently and may not speak English well. Advocates say outreach to them is being underfunded by state and federal governments.
State Human Services Commissioner Lucinda Jesson says Minnesota is seeking $7 million in federal funding to pay the assistants.
MINNESOTA-1ST DISTRICT RACE
Rochester lawmaker to challenge Walz in Minn. 1st
ROCHESTER, Minn. (AP) - A two-term Republican state legislator says he'll try to unseat Democratic U.S. Rep. Tim Walz in the 2014 election.
Rep. Mike Benson told the New Ulm Journal that he would seek his party's nomination in the 1st Congressional District. Walz has represented the southern Minnesota after toppling an incumbent to get to Washington in 2006.
Benson's home base of Rochester gives him a footing in the district's most populous city. He first won his state House seat in 2010.
While he has embraced conservative positions on social issues, Benson has strayed some from his party on taxes. He once pushed to boost the state's tobacco tax as a way to raise money for schools and trim business taxes. But Benson has since criticized higher taxes on smokers.
Woman dies in apparent drowning in Owatonna
OWATONNA, Minn. (AP) - A woman has died after being pulled from a lake in Steele County.
Authorities say the woman was found face down in Lake Kohlmier in Owatonna Sunday just before 5 p.m. First responders attempted to revive the woman, who has not been identified.
Care giver for highway toddler charged
SANDSTONE, Minn. (AP) - A day care provider has been charged in Pine County with neglecting a toddler who wandered onto a highway and was nearly struck.
A criminal complaint says 56-year-old Carrie Richardson was intoxicated while caring for 10 children at her Sandstone home. Twenty-one-month-old Kaylee Matson left an outside play area last Wednesday and walked down the center line of Highway 23. The complaint says vehicles swerved to avoid the child before she was scooped up by a 13-year-old boy who handed her to a woman who called authorities.
The complaint says Richardson told investigators she was drinking vodka "because she was having a bad day." The Star Tribune says Richardson is charged with child neglect and child endangerment.
Boat burns on Lake Minnetonka, no injuries
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) - Authorities say several adults and children escaped from a burning boat on Lake Minnetonka.
The boat caught fire on Robinson Bay on Sunday. Heavy, black smoke billowed from the boat. KSTP-TV reports the boat's occupants got a ride to safety from other boaters.
Sex offender wins new sentencing hearing
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - A man convicted of failing to register as a sex offender in Mississippi will be re-sentenced because a federal appeals panel threw out his prison term.
Court records show Calvin Windless was convicted in 1993 in Illinois for aggravated sexual assault and was required to register as a sex offender. He was released from prison in 1999.
He moved to Minnesota, where he was convicted for failing to register in 2008. He left Minnesota and moved to Belzoni, Miss., in 2010.
Windless pleaded guilty in 2011 to failing to register in Mississippi. He was sentenced to 2.5 years in prison plus 10 years of supervised release.
Windless did not challenge the lengths of the prison sentence and supervised release. He argued the conditions put on his supervised release were unreasonable.
STILLWATER LIFT BRIDGE
Stillwater Lift Bridge closed to boat traffic
STILLWATER, Minn. (AP) - Crews will be making repairs to the Stillwater Lift Bridge after a cable snapped as it was being lowered.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation says the bridge is temporarily closed to bigger boats because it can't be raised. Transportation officials say the bridge is still open to vehicles.
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