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Woodbury police believe an 82-year-old man was the victim of a multi-thousand-dollar scam after a caller who claimed to be the man's grandson persuaded him to mail $39,000 in cash to an Atlanta address. According to a report filed July 13, the caller posed as the man's grandson July 12 and asked for money to bail out another individual arrested en route to a funeral. A second request for money came July 13, when the caller said his fingerprints were found on a bag of drugs in the car, followed by a third call asking for even more money.
Washington County officials believe four additional children were victims of a former School District 833 bus attendant who was accused in February of molesting six children. Harvey Theodore Kneifl, 70, of Woodbury now faces a total of 10 felony charges of second-degree criminal sexual conduct for allegedly groping children over their clothes as they rode the school bus.
Woodbury homeowners could see an uptick in their property taxes if the City Council finalizes a preliminary tax levy in December. Owners of homes valued at $296,700, the median value for the city, would pay $31 more in property taxes following a $3 decrease in 2017. The city is proposing a similar tax levy increase to last year — about 3.8 percent — but the property tax increase stems from shifts in the median value of homes in the city. While values rose minimally between 2016 and 2017, 2018 values rose nearly $19,000 over last year.
The intensive oral surgeries Woodbury dentist Dr. Tom Dresen performs allow him to build a relationship with patients over several years. A third-generation specialty dentist, Dresen's repertoire includes treating cleft palates, reconstructive surgery after throat and mouth cancer treatments and prosthetics at Dresen Restorative Dentistry. For more than a decade, Dresen has been able to form bonds with families in need through mission work with Programa San Francisco De Assis.
Robotics teams from four local high schools will host their first offseason robotics competition Saturday, Sept. 16, at East Ridge High School. The East Metro Collaborative Competition, a partnership among East Ridge High School, Park High School, Woodbury High School and the Math & Science Academy, will host teams from 26 other Minnesota High schools. The opening ceremony for the event, hosted by Woodbury Mayor Mary Giuliani Stephens, starts at 8:30 a.m.
Five men have been arrested in Woodbury during a staged undercover operation targeting people who solicit children for sex Wednesday, Sept. 13. Kyle Bracken, 40 of Minneapolis, Mark Priorier, 47 of Colfax, Wisconsin, Kao Chang, 40 of St. Paul, Mark Kislowski, 48 of Ballston Lake, New York and Gary Infante, 34 of Andover each face similar, but separate, charges related to sexual solicitation of minors.
A felony first-degree burglary conviction landed Lawrence Murray Best a sentence of less than a year in jail, but the 54-year-old Afton man will spend the next two decades on probation. According to a criminal complaint filed in Washington County in March, Best's burglary charge stems from a March 6 incident in which Best refused to leave a woman's Woodbury home and attempted to pocket more than $700 worth of her jewelry.
As Texans continue to assess the wreckage of the hurricane that ripped through the state's southeastern corner last week, Woodbury businesses, faith communities and organizations have offered their assistance. Hurricane Harvey, which reached land Aug. 25, left at least 70 deaths in its wake, displacing and stranding thousands more. The destruction prompted a swift response from Woodbury Lutheran Church, which raised about $30,000 in free-will donations the weekend of Sept. 3.
Guests at the Christian Cupboard Emergency Food Shelf politely stepped around shopping carts, shelves of food, volunteers and one another as they browsed the inventory of groceries last week. Each year, about 6,300 people in need filter through a crowded, 1,500-square-foot space in the basement of Woodbury Lutheran Church once a month to load up on a variety of foods, hygiene and baby products, and household items such as toilet paper.
For Woodbury resident Ruth Cherinet, a church offers one of the strongest connections she feels to her Ethiopian heritage and community. Cherinet said the unity she feels with the congregation at the Ethiopian Evangelical Church in St. Paul is somewhat rare in Minnesota's Ethiopian community. Her parents' home county is home to at least 10 different ethnic groups, which can sometimes drive a wedge between Ethiopians both in Minnesota and abroad.