Crime

Wayne Leistico, a 30-year-old Elk River man, has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for criminal sexual conduct in the first and second degree in Sherburne County 10th District Court. Judge Sheridan Hawley sentenced Leistico to the statutory maximum. Leistico pled guilty to the charges in August 2013. An investigation of Leistico began in [...]

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by Mandy Moran Froemming ECM Publishers A woman has been charged for allegedly mailing bomb threats to seven post offices in the Twin Cities, including Elk River. Christina Anne Reineke, 43, was arraigned in U.S. District Court Monday, charged with mailing threatening communications. Reineke was arrested Friday, Oct. 4, according to U.S. Postal Inspector Jeff [...]

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The Sherburne County Sheriff’s Criminal Investigation Division on Sept. 25 arrested a 38-year-old  Zimmerman in connection with an alleged burglary at a new restaurant and bar in Zimmerman. According to Sherburne County Sheriff Joel Brott, his criminal investigation division executed a search warrant at the man’s home and found what’s believed to be  stolen TV’s, [...]

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by Joni Astrup Associate Editor Former Sherburne County Sheriff Richard “Dick” Witschen has died at age 78. He was appointed Sherburne County sheriff in 1981 and was re-elected until his retirement in 1995. Witschen died Sept. 18 after battling mesothelioma for the past 10 months. Sherburne County Sheriff Joel Brott said he’s saddened by Witschen’s [...]

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by Jim Boyle Editor Chevy Silverado stolen from Elk River home A 35-year-old Elk River man reported at 5:35 a.m. on Aug. 8 his truck, a 2006 Chevy Silverado was stolen from his driveway sometime overnight The vehicle had been left unlocked, but he had the only set of keys inside the house at the [...]

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by Clay Sawatzke ECM Sun Publications Phillip LaVallee, a 2012 Monticello High School graduate who was preparing to begin his sophomore year at South Dakota State University, was hit and killed by a van while out for a run on Aug. 8 in the 8300 block of County Road 19 in Otsego. The initial investigation [...]

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A: One of the most sudden gut wrenching moments in one’s life is when a parent or guardian is realizing their child, whom they thought was right beside them, has now disappeared and cannot be found by simply doing a quick scan of the area. Possibly the family is at a busy shopping center, the county or state fair, or even a local grocery store. What would you do?  Are there steps that can be done before leaving home for the day to help decrease the panic that sets in and also increase the ability to find your child quicker?  The answer is “YES!” First – Take a photo of your child before you leave for the day.  One of the first questions law enforcement will ask is “What are they wearing?”  Cell phone technology has made this very easy to do and easily accessible as well.  A photo truly is worth a thousand words. A free app that can be used on your phone is the FBI Child ID, where you can update photos as needed, enter identifying information (birthmarks, height, weight, etc.) and contact information.  In the event of a missing child (or person with dementia or vulnerable adult), this app can be used to contact the local law enforcement agency in the area and also provide the ability to send the information via email to their dispatch center to quickly and accurately disseminate to officers and deputies looking for the missing person in real time. (Note: The FBI does not share your information – it just sponsors the application.  Any information you forward would be your choice.) Second – Write your child’s first name and your cell number and contact information on a slip of paper and put in their pocket for safe keeping and use if they do get separated.  You should begin to teach your child their name, address, phone number (with area code), and your given names – not just Mom and Dad – as soon as they are able to learn this information.  However, if they are scared or under stress, they may not be able to remember or even recite the information to an adult when asked for help. Third – Have a predetermined place to meet in the area.  By the cashiers, the Ferris Wheel, or at customer service.  This can help not only your child but you if you get separated from an adult party and cannot find them right away. Fourth – Know who to get help from.  If it is a small child, point out the officers that work at the State Fair.  Show them what the employees of the stores wear – what does their uniform look like, etc.  How can they find them easily?  Explain to your child that they are the ones that stand behind the counter and take money for purchases. Being prepared for an incident like this before it ever happens will provide the tools and resources necessary to help responding law enforcement officials help you to find your loved one in the quickest way possible.

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by Joni Astrup Associate Editor Elk River Police Chief Brad Rolfe would like to put a detective on the Sherburne County Drug Task Force. The task force is the entity that investigates most of the suspected illegal drug activity in Elk River and the rest of the county, Rolfe said. It includes a sergeant and [...]

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by Joni Astrup Associate Editor Property crimes and traffic safety issues are ongoing concerns in Elk River, but the number of serious crimes against people remains “fairly low.” That’s according to Elk River Police Chief Brad Rolfe, who outlined his department’s performance measures and goals in an Aug. 5 budget work session with the City [...]

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