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 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 email@example.com 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
A 20-year-old man who told police he thought he could get away with whatever sex act he wanted at a Woodbury massage parlor was charged Monday with two counts of criminal sexual conduct. Washington County prosecutors charged Houa Lor, St. Paul, with one count of second-degree criminal sexual conduct and one count of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct. According to a criminal complaint, Lor attempted to force himself on a masseuse April 10 at Woodbury Oriental Massage.
When Chuck Krinke watched a lightning bolt strike a Woodbury house last year, he knew he had to go to the scene. By the time the episode was over, he had kicked down a door and helped two would-be victims - unaware the house was becoming enveloped in flames - safely escape. "I did what anyone else would do," said Krinke, 67. Woodbury Public Safety officials disagreed.
By MIKE LONGAECKER firstname.lastname@example.org Some Woodbury senior citizens put it all on the line last week. There were life stories. There was artwork. There were musical performances. "Under this roof, we have a wealth of talent," said Margaret Wachholz, director of activities at Woodbury Senior Living. Thursday, May 5 was a day of expression at Woodbury Senior Living's Villa. Wachholz said the event represented an opportunity for the Villa's residents to do something out of character: to show off.
The announcement that Osama bin Laden had been killed represented a somber moment for Scott Wallace. As President Obama explained last week how a military strike team had killed the al Qaida leader, Wallace, a Woodbury resident, just pumped his fist. "It was a thank you to the president that we got rid of this guy," said Wallace, a survivor of the Sept. 11, 2001, World Trade Center attacks. "It just eliminated a very bad person from the world scene." The news brought back a flood of emotions and memories, he said. Wallace still recalls the events from Sept. 11 clearly.
A Woodbury bachelor party that began getting messy in St. Paul ended up with a felony charge for a 31-year-old man by night's end. Washington County prosecutors charged Jason Kelly Gordon, of New Hope, with one count of terroristic threats and one count of disorderly conduct following a May 1 disturbance outside a Woodbury residence. Police were called at 3:19 a.m. to the 10000 block of Grand Forest Lane for an unwanted male, later identified as Gordon.
A 19-year-old Woodbury man who had become the target of neighbors' suspicions makes his initial court appearance this week on allegations that he sold drugs to minors out of his home. Justin Allen Hanson, was charged last month with third-degree drug sales to a minor, a felony that carries a possible prison sentence. Woodbury police were alerted to the case in March by several residents concerned with ongoing activity in the 7200 block of Braemar Lane.
Woodbury couldn't find any answers to East Ridge pitcher Alyssa Ronquillo, who blanked the Royals 7-0 Thursday in a complete-game performance. The senior pitcher struck out seven and allowed four hits in the rivalry road match-up, where East Ridge improved to 7-4 on the season. "We've got to keep on a roll," Raptors coach Tom Nemo said. Junior Kelsey Jarrett led the way at plate, where she went 3-for-4. Fellow Raptor Jessika Simonson was 2-for-3 on the day.