Mike Longaecker is editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. His coverage includes local crime, legislative activity and prep sports.
You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker
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Woodbury residents will get an up-close look this month at some of the Midwest's most highly trained dogs in action. From June 12 to June 14, the city will play host to the Region 18 trials of the United State Police Canine Association.
Two people were arrested in Woodbury following a drug investigation that uncovered a "large amount" of methamphetamines. According to a preliminary police report, members of the Washington County narcotics unit assisted Ramsey County drug officers who executed a search warrant at 10:48 a.m. June 3 at a storage facility at 881 Weir Drive. The warrant was for a recreational vehicle belonging to the two suspects and for two storage lockers at the site.
A Woodbury man pleaded not guilty last week to two felonies, including charges that he knowingly violated predatory offender registration. Bennie Chapman Jr., 41, was arraigned June 2 on one count of drug possession and one count of knowing- or intentional-notification failure. Police arrested Chapman last month after investigating activity at Red Roof Inn. A warrant had been issued for Chapman's arrest after a check of his Woodbury residence revealed he no longer lived there.
A study examining transit options for Interstate 94 through Woodbury last week added another consideration: managed lanes. The MnPASS alternative - which already provides a dedicated lane on west- and south-metro highways for carpoolers, motorcycles, buses and those who pay a fee - marks the eighth option under consideration by the Gateway Corridor Commission. The commission is tasked with narrowing the transit options along the interstate between Minneapolis and Eau Claire, Wis., as a solution to an anticipated jump in traffic levels. The other options under consideration are express buses
Expectations are sky-high for this year's Relay For Life of South Washington County. After leading the state in fundraising in 2010, local Relay organizers are looking to stay on top - and keep raising the bar. "We want that distinction again," said Mara Mayberry, co-chairperson of the local Relay event. This year South Washington County Relay organizers are aiming for a goal of $230,000. All money raised goes toward the cancer battle: cancer research and funding of cancer treatments. Last year the South Washington County Relay attracted 949 walkers.
A Woodbury man faces two felonies stemming from allegations he used his ex-wife's personal information to generate fraudulent unemployment payments from the state of Minnesota. Andrew J. Sinaberg, 44, was charged in April with identity theft and receiving unemployment benefits by false representation.
In a legislative session punctuated by disagreement, lawmakers and Gov. Mark Dayton found nothing to argue about in a bill driven by a Woodbury family. Dayton signed "Tyler's Law" into the books May 24 held a ceremonial signing Tuesday. Though the Democratic governor and the Republican-controlled Legislature could not come to terms on an overall budget deal - under threat of a partial government shutdown - Tyler's Law drew no protest.
A bill that would require drivers to have a full understanding of carbon monoxide dangers before receiving their driver's license received unanimous support Thursday from the Minnesota House. Lawmakers passed the bill - dubbed "Tyler's Law" for Tyler Lavers, a Woodbury man who died last year from carbon monoxide poisoning - on a 131-0 vote. The bill now awaits action in the Senate. The bill's chief House sponsor, Rep.
Two witnesses reported seeing a black bear roaming Wednesday near Woodbury Lakes. According to a police report, a Woodbury woman called at 5:18 a.m. to report seeing a bear "bounding" northbound through a wetland area west of Woodbury Lakes and east of the vacant State Farm Insurance Co. building property. The bear was last seen moving northwest in a wooded area north of a swamp. Police were unable to locate the bear, but encountered a man walking his dog who also reported seeing the bear.
By Mike Longaecker firstname.lastname@example.org Scott Melander is the Woodbury police department's traffic unit. Not in the figurative sense, as in he's the face of the unit or its critical link. "We call it the traffic unit - it's one guy," said Woodbury Public Safety Director Lee Vague. Melander is the department's one and only member of the traffic unit, a role created in 2009 in response to his desire to form a more responsive approach to city traffic issues. "I've always enjoyed traffic safety," Melander said. As the department's traffic guru, Melander maintains a narrow focus on th