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 63-year-old man was airlifted after a crash Tuesday outside Plum City. The Pierce County Sheriff’s Office said Plum City resident Michael P. Hovde was flown to Regions Hospital in St. Paul for his injuries, the extent of which were not disclosed.
Spotlight draws arrest A deputy stopped Jan. 4 at W3202 160th Ave. in Maiden Rock to tell a man that his high-powered spotlight was blinding motorists. The man was arrested for two warrants. Puppy mill report investigated
Traffic trouble • An Elmwood man was arrested at 11:23 p.m. Dec. 22 at 330th Avenue and County Road S in Plum City after a traffic stop. The 23-year-old was arrested on suspicion of OWI and was cited for operating left of center. • Deputies were called at 4:13 a.m. Dec. 23 to W829 County Road G in Elmwood for an unwanted intoxicated person. A 31-year-old Red Wing man was arrested on warrants, including one from Clark County.
An Elmwood-area man's dog breeding practices landed criminal convictions this year and he's not through with the court system yet. A jury in October convicted Stuart E. West of 62 counts — mostly related to failure to provide proper food and drink, along with eight convictions for animal mistreatment. He was acquitted on 15 counts of improper animal shelter space and 48 counts of improper ventilation for the dogs.
TOWN OF TRENTON -- A southeastern Minnesota woman was killed and an Ellsworth woman was airlifted Thursday after a head-on crash in Pierce County.
PRESCOTT — Reports of a man missing in dangerous temperatures ended with him being found cold, but alive. Prescott Police Chief Rob Funk said the man was discovered "a little worse for the wear" during the Tuesday, Dec. 26, incident, though apparently free of serious injuries. He said a Prescott police officer found the man just south of town near St. Joseph's Cemetery along Monroe Street. The man had gone out to look for his dog — a trek that took him to the Mississippi River, where Funk said the man fell in.
A Minnesota National Guard helicopter was damaged this month while landing at Red Wing Regional Airport in Bay City. According to a Guard spokeswoman, the incident occurred the evening of Dec. 13 while a three-person crew was returning from a training exercise. The UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter “experienced technical difficulties” while attempting to land Guard Capt. Holly Rockow said.
The National Guard reported a helicopter involved in a crash was being left at Red Wing Regional Airport on Dec. 13. A deputy taped off the damaged aircraft and provided extra patrol overnight. Elmwood speeding dispute draws disorderly ticket Deputies responded Dec. 17 to Project Drive and Winter Avenue in Elmwood for an argument between two men about speeding. One of the men was sent a ticket for disorderly conduct. Late night driver
Dave Austin was captivated by media reports he saw about yellow Labradors rescued from an Elmwood-area man's kennel, so he and his wife knew exactly what they wanted when word spread that the dogs were being put up for adoption. The suburban Milwaukee couple figured there'd be a mad rush to adopt the puppies seized from Stuart West's town of El Paso home. "But the mamas that are 2 and 3 years old — people aren't looking so much to adopt them because of the babies," his wife, Cathie Austin, said.
A 12-year-old boy was hospitalized Saturday after being thrown from a horse-and-buggy ride at a Stockholm Christmas celebration. Pepin County Sheriff Joel Wener said the boy was one of eight passengers, along with the horses’ owner, on a buggy at the God Jul festival, held Dec. 2, when the incident occurred at about 12:46 p.m.