Mary Divine / St. Paul Pioneer Press
WOODBURY, Minn. — Parents of young girls allegedly molested by Woodbury school bus aide gasped and cried in a Stillwater courtroom on Monday morning as they saw for the first time surveillance videos showing Harvey Kneifl touching their daughters. In one of the videos, Kneifl can be seen rubbing a 4-year-old girl’s inner thigh and genital area for 27 seconds. In another, he can be seen rubbing a different 4-year-old girl’s genital area and can be heard asking: “Does that feel good? Do you like it? Does that feel good?”
The state Occupational Safety and Health Administration has alleged a serious safety violation and levied a $25,000 fine against the Minnesota Department of Corrections in connection with the death of a Stillwater prison guard last summer. Corrections officer Joseph Gomm was killed on July 18 by an inmate wielding a prison-issued hammer and two improvised knives in a workshop at the Minnesota Correctional Facility-Stillwater, which is located in Bayport, officials said.
STILLWATER, Minn. — Authorities say an inmate assaulted a corrections officer Wednesday morning, Jan. 9, at the Stillwater prison. The Minnesota Department of Corrections says the sergeant was assaulted in the prison’s B-East living unit. The sergeant was evaluated at a hospital and released, said Sarah Fitzgerald, a spokeswoman for the department. The prison was placed on lockdown as a result of the assault. Fitzgerald said corrections officers “responded quickly and professionally and contained the incident.”
PINE COUNTY, Minn. — Lee Peltier wasn’t dressed for nasty weather last month when he went deer hunting east of Hinckley, Minn. Wearing camouflage pants, a red sweatshirt, a blaze-orange vest and an orange stocking hat, Peltier planned to be in the Nemadji State Forest for just a short time on Saturday, Nov. 3. It was shortly before lunchtime when he and three friends went out to hunt. Peltier and John Warner, one of the owners of the cabin where they were staying, headed toward a nearby pond.
OAK PARK HEIGHTS, Minn. -- A corrections officer at Minnesota Correctional Facility — Oak Park Heights suffered a medical emergency and died Monday afternoon after responding to an inmate assault on another officer, Department of Corrections officials said. Joseph Parise, 37, died at Regions Hospital in St. Paul. The cause of death was not immediately known.
STILLWATER, Minn.—When a fire broke out at their Stillwater house on Monday morning, Dan Hintze and Lindsay Belland's kids knew what to do. Their oldest son, Collin Hintze, 14, ran upstairs to rescue his 6-year-old sister Lorelai, who has special needs. Daughter Ella Belland, 13, ran outside to get help. "When seconds counted, they did exactly what they were supposed to do," Lindsay Belland said Thursday. "They didn't panic, and they are 14 and 13. I feel like most adults would panic. They really acted in a way that was far beyond their years."
STILLWATER, Minn.—Prosecutors said Friday that they may never know why Edward Johnson allegedly attacked and killed Stillwater corrections officer Joseph Gomm. Gomm's killing on July 18 seems "completely senseless," Washington County Attorney Pete Orput said. "When people ask me, I say: 'Some people do things because they can.' We haven't been able to find a motive. ... This might be one of those cases where we'll never know, and that is frustrating for many of us."
STILLWATER, Minn.—A Stillwater inmate used a prison-issued hammer and two improvised knives to kill a corrections officer last month, according to murder charges filed Thursday. Edward Muhammad Johnson, 42, had checked out the hammer from the industry building at Minnesota Correctional Facility-Stillwater before fatally bludgeoning officer Joseph Gomm on July 18, charges say. Washington County prosecutors charged him Thursday, Aug. 2, with second-degree intentional murder and second-degree assault.
LAKE ELMO, Minn. — New tips concerning Susan Swedell, who went missing during a blizzard in Lake Elmo on Jan. 19, 1988, have been coming in to the Washington County sheriff's office after a St. Paul Pioneer Press report on the case was published Sunday, Jan. 7. Sheriff Dan Starry said his office has received eight tips this week about Swedell; her case has been getting renewed attention as the 30th anniversary of her disappearance nears.
ST. PAUL—When Eric Buck drove past the scene of a multi-vehicle crash on Interstate 380 near Waterloo, Iowa, last month, he asked his children to pray for the people involved. The St. Paul man and three of his six children were headed home from Iowa during a snowstorm on Dec. 29 when they saw a dozen cars "totaled in a pileup" and witnessed first responders cutting open a car that had been struck by a semitrailer truck.