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FARGO—Mike Kohler lined up with thousands of other runners inside the Fargodome here on Saturday, May 19, ready for his first half-marathon as part of the Sanford Fargo Marathon. It would be a big step for the 26-year-old plumber and pipefitter from West Fargo, who ran the 10K last year and the 5K the year before that. But a misstep, right from the start, put him on an even more difficult course.
FARGO—Three children recently died within a 60-mile radius of here, allegedly at the hands of caregivers who should have protected them. Linda Dorff, Cass County Social Services division manager, fears we'll see more deaths. "That worries me. Scares me," Dorff said. On April 9, 6-year-old Justis Burland died in Fergus Falls, Minn., after being repeatedly beaten, tortured and neglected for months. He had injuries from head to toe.
FARGO—Fargo City Commissioner Tony Grindberg will make a pitch at Monday's commission meeting to reinstate a previous city policy for funding streets and sewers as political rhetoric builds over how to handle special assessments. Grindberg says he'll move to rescind the current 50-50 funding split between the city and homeowners and bring back the previous 70-30 split, with city general taxes paying more. He thinks it'll be a short-term solution while the city finishes a comprehensive review of infrastructure funding policy.
FARGO—The former site of North Dakota's first abortion clinic is about to become an empty space. An excavation equipment operator began tearing down the two story, 110-year-old house just off Main Avenue here on Saturday, May 19. The new owners, who have a building next to it, will turn the site into a parking lot. The building at 11 14th St. S. was home to the Fargo Women's Health Organization from 1981 to 2001. It was the scene of tense abortion protests and the target of break-ins and fire-bombings in the early 1990s.
FARGO—Not a lot of good has happened to Meredith Jeter in the past 30 years or so. Growing up in Denton, Texas, she became addicted to meth at age 16 and got pregnant. She wanted to raise the baby on her own, but knew it really wasn't an option. "The thought of keeping it was more of a fantasy than it was ever going to be a reality," Jeter said recently from a sober-living residence in north Fargo. She decided adoption was the best path.
FARGO — Julie Bruce managed to pack senior year studies into her junior year in order to graduate a year early from Fargo North High School. On May 31, 1999, one day after graduation, a farmer checking his fields east of Casselton, N.D., found the 17-year-old lying on a gravel road in a pool of her own blood and vomit, the victim of a severe beating. Rick Majerus, then-chief investigator and now retired from the Cass County Sheriff's Office, first saw Bruce that night in her hospital room.
FARGO — Julie Bruce managed to pack senior year studies into her junior year in order to graduate a year early from Fargo North High School. On May 31, 1999, one day after graduation, a farmer checking his fields east of Casselton, N.D., found the 17-year-old lying on a gravel road in a pool of her own blood and vomit, the victim of a severe beating.
FARGO—Virtually every emergency call and response in the Fargo-Moorhead area goes through the hub here known as the Red River Regional Dispatch Center. From car crashes, assaults and fires, to gas leaks, fights and heart attacks, dispatchers make sure emergency crews get to the right location, fast. The center set up shop 15 years ago in an older brick building at 300 NP Ave., which offered a pleasant setting for a stressful occupation.
FARGO — People calling 911 for a medical emergency here expect to see a fire engine pull up, along with paramedics and police. In the near future, however, a Fargo fire pickup could respond instead of a full-sized engine. Mayor Tim Mahoney is proposing the potentially cost-saving measure after learning about trends in other cities at a recent conference. "Is there a way of doing some of our runs with a little less manpower, in a sense, and the manpower being the fire trucks?" he said in a recent interview, sitting alongside Fire Chief Steve Dirksen.
FARGO—The old two-story off Main Avenue here looks like any house in need of fixing, with its peeling paint, patched up siding and overgrown trees. Upon closer examination, traces of a more complex, even turbulent history become evident. Long-faded warning signs of "private property" and "premises under surveillance" remain. On the backside, repairs are still visible from the time someone used a molotov cocktail to set the building on fire.