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A judge overseeing the Diocese of Duluth's bankruptcy has signed off on two insurance company settlements that will pump nearly $10 million into the case. The agreements, approved by U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Robert Kressel at a hearing in Minneapolis on Thursday, will provide almost $9 million to victims of child sexual abuse and allow officials to pursue additional compensation. The settlements with Catholic Mutual Relief Society of America and Fireman's Fund Insurance Co. resolve two-fifths of a federal lawsuit filed in June 2016 that has stalled the bankruptcy proceedings.
Two suspects accused of aiding in last year's fatal shooting of a Duluth college student during an alleged robbery can proceed to trial, a judge ruled. In separate orders issued last week, 6th Judicial District Judge Mark Munger upheld felony charges against Tara Rai Baker and Xavier Alfred Haywood in the February 2017 death of 22-year-old William Grahek.
A Solway Township man admitted Thursday that he was highly intoxicated when he crashed his car early Memorial Day morning, killing one friend and injuring three others. Austin Darrell Hilden, 19, pleaded guilty to felony charges of criminal vehicular homicide and criminal vehicular operation at a hearing in State District Court in Duluth.
An Eveleth woman has been charged with three misdemeanors in connection with a fatal crash involving a well-known Iron Range car dealer. Niomi Cheyenne Boulanger, 19, is accused of careless driving, failure to yield and driving without insurance in the August collision that killed 60-year-old Donald Hilligoss of Cohasset.
An appeals court will not consider an effort by prosecutors to reinstate four charges against a man who was shot by Hibbing police officers following an alleged assault in January. The Minnesota Court of Appeals, in an order filed last week, let stand a district court decision dismissing a charge of attempted second-degree murder and three counts of first-degree assault against Che Nathaniel Jones.
The Duluth man accused of a fatal shooting outside a Lincoln Park bar in October 2016 will head to trial next month. Aaron Demetrius Humphreys, 43, faces an intentional second-degree murder charge in the death of 47-year-old Eric Wayne Burns, who authorities said was gunned down moments after the two men were involved in a barroom dispute.
The woman accused of serving as the getaway driver for a trio of suspects in the death of a Duluth college student was "adamant" that she was the person behind the wheel immediately before and after the shooting. That is the according to prosecutors in a brief filed this week, contradicting arguments from defense attorneys who are seeking dismissal of the charges against of 23-year-old Tara Rai Baker.
A Proctor man who fired more than three dozen shots at his live-in girlfriend during a domestic incident last year has pleaded guilty to attempted premeditated first-degree murder. Rusty George Kallis, 41, averted a trial on 10 felony charges in entering the eleventh-hour plea Wednesday. Attorneys were already a day into the jury selection process when he accepted an agreement with the St. Louis County Attorney's Office.
The 1992 benzene spill in Superior is a rare example of an incident that prompted Twin Ports authorities to order a mass evacuation. But the efforts undertaken to alert the public about that hazard bear little resemblance to how a similar situation would be handled a quarter-century later, said Dewey Johnson, emergency management coordinator for St. Louis County. "Things have changed since Toxic Tuesday," he said. "The expectation of the public is that it comes to device in your hand."
A second insurer has agreed to settle its part in a lawsuit brought by the Diocese of Duluth in its ongoing bankruptcy. Fireman's Fund Insurance Co. would pay the diocese $975,000 to resolve claims filed in federal court in June 2016. It is the second of five insurers named in the lawsuit to reach an agreement. The proposed settlement, which must still be approved by a judge, would be used to continue litigation against the remaining insurers with the goal of obtaining monetary damages for victims of child sexual abuse, according to court documents.