Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau.
You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker
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A man who left his cellphone behind at the scene of a Woodbury burglary was sentenced to prison time. Andre T. Holt, 26, was sentenced to 49 months - two-thirds of which must be served in prison, according to Minnesota law. The West St. Paul man was convicted and sentenced Sept.
A message of economic development ran up against the promise of leadership last week as candidates vying to represent Woodbury on the Washington County Board staked out their positions during a public forum. Challenger Nancy Remakel, a Woodbury planning commissioner, focused on boosting economic development in the county during a Tuesday, Sept. 25, League of Women Voters forum. "Economic development is a very big challenge for this side of town," the former Woodbury City Council member said.
The Royals spent much of the week toiling over its struggles on extra points.
A man accused of ripping the head off his ex-girlfriend's pet snake was sentenced last month on a burglary conviction. A 21-month prison sentence was stayed for Brian Jeffrey Schmidt, 38, provided he abides terms of a five-year probation. The Anoka man must spend a year in jail, 10th District Court Judge Tad Jude ordered. Schmidt will receive credit for 201 days already served. Other terms of the sentence call for Schmidt to pay $450 in restitution, to serve a lifetime firearm ban and a life suspension of his voting privileges.
This week's Homecoming festivities kicked off with the induction of a former NFL player into Woodbury High School's Hall of Fame. Chip Lohmiller, a 1984 WHS graduate, was honored Monday -- the first day of Homecoming activities at the high school. Lohmiller was an all-state player for the Royals before he played four years of college football at the University of Minnesota. He was drafted in 1988 by the Washington Redskins, where, as a kicker, he went on to win a Super Bowl during his nine-year NFL career. "You're from Woodbury," Lohmiller told a packed gymnasium Monday.
A Woodbury family of six was left homeless early this week after fire destroyed their house. No residents or firefighters were hurt in the blaze, which was first reported at 12:08 a.m. Sunday, Sept. 23, at 8350 Marsh Creek Road. Woodbury Fire Cmdr. John Wallgren said early indications were that hot ashes disposed of in the family's garage were the cause of the fire.
A Woodbury man accused of sexually assaulting a girl since she was 5 years old was charged last week with four counts of criminal sexual conduct. Anthony Neil Sweet, 51, was being held in Washington County jail on a $500,000 bond after a Thursday, Sept. 20 initial court appearance.
Quran Al-Hameed was a one-man wrecking crew Friday against Park. The senior running back tallied four touchdowns to go with two blocked punts in the Royals' 43-7 home win over the Wolfpack. "All I do is really run hard," Al-Hameed said after the game - his third in a row with at least three touchdowns. The win, which improved the Royals' season mark at 2-1, provided evidence that the team had learned from a nearly catastrophic second half the week before against Hastings.
Jim Grinols subscribes to Ronald Reagan's motto: trust but verify. That's why the Woodbury man is seeking something he believes has never been requested before in American history.
Former Woodbury High School activities director John Soma, a WHS graduate, resigned Monday from the same position at Edina High School. Soma was placed on administrative leave in August and was under investigation by the Edina school district. Edina Public Schools Communications Director Susan Brott said Soma had been placed on administrative leave on Aug. 23 in relation to allegations. The investigation was ongoing at the time of his resignation. The district investigation is now over due to Soma's resignation. "The district respects Mr.