Betsy Hodges's spox blasts KSTP for report about tension between mayor and Chief Harteau

On the record, Hodges and Harteau say they have a good working relationship, but KSTP's anonymous sources see things differently.
Mayor Betsy Hodges's spokesperson, Kate Brickman, laid into KSTP last night for a report about purported tension between her boss and Minneapolis Police Chief JaneƩ Harteau.

In "Minneapolis Mayor, Police Chief Deny Tense Working Relationship," Jay Kolls cites "multiple" unnamed sources who tell him the two "don't get along very well." He says the beef the two had about police body cameras while Hodges was on the campaign trial marked the beginning of their rift. But Brickman thinks the real story is about how gender bias colors KSTP's coverage.

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Andrew Billingsley Jr. shot dead after sticking up for son on 19 bus in north Mpls, charges say

Rick Berg on the North Vent Facebook page
Officers gather at the site of Billingsley Jr.'s murder.
The man videotaped lying dead last Thursday on a north Minneapolis street was shot dead after confronting 16-year-old Joshua Ford on a Metro Transit Rout 19 bus near 26th and Penn Avenues N., authorities say.

Billingsley Jr., 38, "came to the front door of the bus and got into a verbal argument with [Ford] and his companions regarding their harassment of the [his] son," the second-degree murder charges against Ford say. "The bus driver saw the [Ford] draw a gun from his waistband and told the victim to get off the bus, which he did."

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Lake Calhoun's Thomas Beach E. coli closure could end today

Categories: Minneapolis
Minneapolis Park Board
The view of the Minneapolis skyline from Thomas Beach.
Lake Calhoun's Thomas Beach has been closed since last Thursday after water samples revealed unsafe E. coli levels in the area.

But that could end today when the results of testing done yesterday are revealed. If E. coli levels have fallen back below an acceptable level, Thomas Beach could reopen within hours, Robin Smothers, Minneapolis Park and Recreation Board spokesperson, tells us.

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Paul Trott says cop who shot his dog told him, "This is what we do and I would do it again"

Tito (left); Tito and one of his owners, Josh Lyczkowski (right).
During my regular Friday appearance on AM 1130's Up and At 'Em show last week, yours truly and hosts Jack Tomczak and Ben Kruse talked about the sad story of Tito, the dog that was recently shot to death by a Minneapolis cop on the North Side.

During the discussion, one of Tito's owners, Paul Trott, called in to share his perspective. Right off the bat, he said this: "The very first thing out of [the officer who shot his dog's] mouth, and the truth is, he said, 'This is what we do and I would do it again.' And that is the honest truth."

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Activist Al Flowers alleges Minneapolis cops beat him up during arrest

Al Flowers's mugshot
Just after midnight Saturday morning, Minneapolis cops showed up at longtime community activist Al Flowers's South Side residence. Officers said they had a warrant to arrest his teenage daughter.

Exactly what happened next remains the subject of controversy, but in any event, as the photo at the top of this post indicates, the ensuing altercation left Flowers, 55, bloody and behind bars.

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Story about shooter smuggling gun into Champions via fake leg is BS, attorney says

Just months before Champions Bar closed for good earlier this year under pressure from the city, an innocent bystander named Mark Stephenson was shot to death at the Lake Street dive.

But Ed Matthews, an attorney representing Champions, told us there was little the bar could do to prevent the violence.

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Check out this cool hot tub hanging over Uptown sidewalk [PHOTOS]

Photo via Mark Bradby
Not a bad spot to hang, right?
The luxury apartment building that now stands on the old Cowboy Slim's site features one of the most badass hot tubs you'll see.

The Walkway's hot tub sit right on top of Lake Street, allowing residents and their friends to people watch in the heart of Uptown while relaxing in warm, wet style.

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Uncovered body lies in street following latest north Mpls homicide [VIDEO]

Rick Berg on the North Vent Facebook page
Officers gather at the site of last night's murder.
:::: UPDATE :::: A juvenile has been arrested in connection with last night's homicide, the MPD says. The medical examiner still hasn't released the victim's identity. (Read an update including the victim's name and details about the charges against the murder suspect here.)

:::: UPDATE II :::: MPD spokesman John Elder got back to us with an explanation for why the victim's body is uncovered in the video on page two of this post.

"Due to forensics, we do not make a habit of covering bodies unless there is a different mitigating reason to do so," he says.

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MPD kills innocent north Minneapolis couple's dog [UPDATES]

Tito, the Cane Corso killed by the MPD Friday evening.
:::: UPDATE :::: Here's what the MPD incident report says about Tito's shooting: "DOGS RAN AT OFFICER AND WOULD NOT STOP. DOG DISPATCHED BY OFFICER. SUPERVISOR AND ANIMAL CONTROL RESPONDED TO SCENE." The arrested party is a minor, so his name isn't public information.

:::: UPDATE II :::: The MPD sent us this statement about the incident:
Police officers are placed into situations where, at times, they must make immediate decisions based on only the facts that are present at that moment. The officers are mandated to make the decisions to preserve their own safety as well as the safety of others.

The decision to shoot, or harm, an animal is not made lightly, but at times must be made immediately. Officers have no way of knowing the history of the animal, or what the animal may do. Every threat must be taken seriously.

These are very sad and unfortunate incidents and ones that no one wants to occur.
We also asked the MPD for information about the number of dogs that have been shot by officers in recent years, but that data wasn't immediately available.

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Ron Powell gets 15 years for killing man with gun smuggled into Champions Bar via prosthetic leg

Ron Powell
A bizarre, tragic shooting last August 8 at Champions Bar resulted in a 15-year sentence for Ron Powell, who smuggled a gun into the now-closed bar via his prosthetic leg.

Powell, a 43-year-old Minneapolis resident, was hanging out at the former Lake Street dive when another man started punching him. He fired at his assailant, injuring him, but one of his shots hit innocent bystander Mark Stephenson, 51, who later died from his injuries.

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