April Baumgarten joined the Grand Forks Herald May 19, 2015, and covers crime and education. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, where her family raises registered Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at Jamestown (N.D.) College, now known as University of Jamestown. During her time at the college, she worked as a reporter and editor-in-chief for the university's newspaper, The Collegian. Baumgarten previously worked for The Dickinson Press as a city government and energy reporter in 2011 before becoming the editor of the Hazen Star and Center Republican. She then returned to The Press as a news editor, where she helped lead an award-winning newsroom in recording the historical oil boom.
Have a story idea? Contact Baumgarten at 701-780-1248.
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CROOKSTON, Minn. — A McIntosh man has been accused of possessing child porn depicting young children, with one video showing a sexual act with an infant. Lucas James Coyle, 24, was scheduled to appear Thursday in Polk County District Court to face 13 felony counts of possessing pornographic work involving a minor. Each charge is punishable by up to five years in prison.
CROOKSTON, Minn. — A Polk County jail is investigating how an inmate allegedly overpowered a corrections officer and stole a jail vehicle before leading officers on a six-hour manhunt Wednesday. Tony Mitchell Krueger, 20, of Bagley was back in custody Wednesday night, Aug. 22, after escaping with a Northwest Regional Correctional Center transport vehicle in Crookston. He had not been charged as of 1 p.m. Thursday in connection to the incident, but he likely will face multiple charges for the manhunt, Polk County Sheriff Barb Erdman said.
THIEF RIVER FALLS, Minn. -- A former Thief River Falls Council member has pleaded not guilty to accusations that say he assaulted a city leader during a committee meeting. Joshua Mark Hagen, 38, entered the plea Monday in Pennington County District Court after saying he would fight the fifth-degree assault charge that stemmed from a July 10 scuffle at City Hall in this northwestern Minnesota city of about 8,500 residents..
GRAND FORKS—Red River Valley farmers are hitting the fields early to get small grains in the bin, but some are worried later crops such as soybeans and corn could be in trouble if rain doesn't come soon. Combines started rolling in the fields this week, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture received scattered reports of producers beginning the hard red spring wheat harvest in North Dakota and Minnesota, according to crop progress reports released by the agency early this week.
GRAND FORKS—Vice President Mike Pence had two words of ammunition for military personnel when he spoke Wednesday, July 25, at Grand Forks Air Force Base: "Stay ready." "Bring your very best to this enterprise," he said. "Mind your mission. Mind your people, because here at the Air Force base, you are doing work that is providing security for the greatest nation in the history of the world."
THIEF RIVER FALLS, Minn.—Criminal charges have been filed against two men involved in a fight last week at Thief River Falls City Hall. Former City Council member Joshua Mark Hagen, 38, faces a fifth-degree misdemeanor charge of assault, and City Council member Jerald Dean Brown, 73, has been charged with disorderly conduct. The charges were filed Wednesday, July 19, in Pennington County District Court, a week after a fight broke out between the two during an Administrative Services Committee meeting in City Hall.
FERGUS FALLS, Minn.—Federal prosecutors say an Oklee man had plans to start a "second American Revolution," wrote down instructions for bomb-making and identified multiple targets, including the IRS, police, teachers and "the rich."
THIEF RIVER FALLS—At least one Thief River Falls City Council member has denied accusations he threatened and took a swing at a colleague when a fight involving a thrown chair broke out Tuesday, July 10, at City Hall.
THIEF RIVER FALLS - A Thief River Falls City Council member said his colleague swung a chair at him during a Tuesday argument at City Hall, an altercation that has sparked an investigation. The Pennington County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the disturbance that took place Tuesday afternoon during an Administrative Service Committee meeting. Most city officials have declined to offer details on the case, citing the active nature of the investigation.
PEMBINA, N.D.—A Minnesota man, after being sentenced in Canada, now faces criminal charges in North Dakota after investigators said he tried to smuggle child porn into the country. Craig Eugene Leslie, 27, of Anoka, Minn., appeared Monday in Pembina County District Court in the far northeast corner of North Dakota on five Class C felony charges of possessing certain prohibited materials. Criminal documents allege Leslie had four photos and a video depicting children who appeared to be less than 10 years old being forced to engage in sexual acts.