A reporter for more than 30 years, Carolyn Lange covers regional news with the West Central Tribune.
- Member for
- 4 years 11 months
PAYNESVILLE, Minn. — Crews were finishing up the final details and getting ready to demobilize equipment Wednesday afternoon at a 108-acre solar farm by Paynesville. With about 48,600 solar photovoltaic panels tilted to the west, the Paynesville farm started producing 10 megawatts of direct current in June. It was one of the last of 16 sites in the Aurora solar project to go online in what is currently the state's largest solar project that will produce a total of 150 MWdc of renewable energy that is being sold to Xcel Energy.
MORTON — A small airplane made an emergency landing Saturday afternoon in a bean field in Renville County. The pilot, Harvey Buller, 75 of Mountain Lake, was not injured and the plane was not damaged. The incident happened around 12:50 p.m. when the Renville County Sheriff's Office received a report of a small aircraft in a field two miles north of Morton in Beaver Falls Township. A deputy arrived at the scene, which was south of County Road 2 and west of U.S. Highway 71, and discovered a small plane had landed in a bean field.
ORTONVILLE — Two people were injured Saturday afternoon in Big Stone County when the motorcycle they were riding struck a deer. According to the State Patrol, Thomas John Oakes, 57, and Karen Kay Oakes, 56, both of Ortonville, were riding a 2014 Harley Davidson north on state Highway 7 near Eternal Springs Road north of Ortonville when a deer ran into the road. The motorcycle hit the deer and spun around causing both the driver and passenger to be ejected.
REDWOOD FALLS — The State Patrol is investigating a fatal accident that happened Friday afternoon in Redwood County involving a semi and passenger car that collided head-on. The names of the victims have not yet been released. According to the preliminary report, a 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix , driven by a 38-year-old Morton man, was going west on U.S. Highway 71 in Paxton Township when it crossed into oncoming traffic and collided head-on with a 1999 International semi driven by a 46-year-old man from Bird Island.
PENNOCK — A 46-year-old man was arrested Thursday after a high-speed chase that started in Pennock and ended in a cattail-filled slough near Benson. Jeffrey Darren Hemmingson, of Benson, made a first court appearance Friday morning in Kandiyohi County District Court on felony charges of fifth-degree possession of methamphetamine and fleeing a peace officer in a motor vehicle, and a misdemeanor charge of reckless driving. Unconditional bail for Hemmingson was set at $75,000 and conditional bail at $35,000. His next court appearance is set for July 27.
PENNOCK — A 46-year-old man was arrested Thursday after a high-speed chase that started in in Pennock and ended in a cattail-filled swamp near Benson. According to a Swift County Sheriff John Holtz, the incident started around 7 a.m. on Kandiyohi County Road 7 and U.S. Highway 12 in Pennock when Kandiyohi County deputies stopped a vehicle in connection with a drug search warrant that was being executed nearby.
BROOTEN — The Stearns County Sheriff's Department has identified the victims of a two-vehicle fatal crash that happened Wednesday afternoon south of Brooten. Kassie Lyn Dillon, 16, of Carlos, was killed in the crash. A passenger in her vehicle, Justin Virgil Cumberbatch, 20, of Alexandria, and the driver of the other vehicle, Christopher Wayne Ziemer, 42, of Belgrade, were seriously wounded.
BROOTEN - A 16-year-old girl from Carlos was killed and an Alexandria man was seriously injured in a crash Wednesday afternoon south of Brooten.
GRANITE FALLS — A crew leader for a Sentencing to Service program accused of coercing a female inmate to have sex in exchange for special privileges made an initial court appearance last week in Yellow Medicine County District Court. Michael John Martin, 47, of Wood Lake, faces three felony counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct — force or coercion, and three felony counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct — a correctional employee.
SACRED HEART — A Willmar man was injured in a motorcycle accident Monday night near Sacred Heart. According to the Renville County Sheriff's Department, Trevor Pollard, 21, was driving a 1999 Suzuki motorcycle north on County Road 9 when he struck a guardrail post while negotiating a curve on the road, near the intersection of 780th Avenue. Pollard, who was not wearing a helmet at the time of the crash, was ejected off the motorcycle. He was taken to the Redwood Area Hospital with moderate injuries, according to a press release from the sheriff's office.