The Stearns County Sheriff’s Dept. is investigating a death. Deputies were called Sunday to a dirt path off County Road 4. A caller said there was a vehicle stuck and an elderly woman in it who appeared to be deceased. The vehicle had reached an unpassable area then got stuck on the side of the path. 75 year old Joyce Barnes could not open her door, and couldn’t get out the passenger side as the car was sitting at a steep slant. Authorities think she was there for 36-48 hours. The investigation thus far is not revealing anything of a criminal nature.
A number of road construction projects are underway this week in west and west central Minnesota. MnDOT says that work is taking place on highway 9 from the Kandiyohi County Swift County line to county road 104 near Benson. Highway 75 from highway 12 near Ortonville to highway 7; Highway 7 from highway 119 in Appleton to just north of highway 40; highway 29 from south of the roundabout near Alexandria to just north of highway 55; and highway 27 from 4th Street North in Hoffman to west of I-94 near Alexandria all have projects going on.
A Stearns Co. Deputy, earlier this month, was behind a truck towing a trailer with a smaller bulldozer on it on County road 4. The dozer was not secured to the trailer and it rolled off the back, stopping in front of the deputy. It stayed upright but caused damage to the road. After providing emergency lights while the dozer was re-loaded, the driver was written a citation for transporting an unsecured load.
An inmate at the Stearns Co. Jail, 23 year old Hobson Kimaiga of St. Michael, caused a large amount of damage after breaking a sprinkler head on July 6th . It was on the 2nd floor, and water caused damage to the first floor and basement, as well as an elevator. The case is now in the hands of the Stearns Co. Attorney’s Office for additional charges against Kimaiga.
A home on the west side of Lake Koronis was damaged by fire last Saturday morning. The home owner, Larry Venenga, had been grilling on the lower patio of the home when the fire on the grill happened, starting near the propane tank nozzle. Venenga called 911 around 9 am, then got his family out and alerted a neighbors next door. The Venenga home had fire damage up the homes wall and through the deck.
MnDOT says work begins today on highway 23 from Richmond to Paynesville. Drilling will be done to identify pavement and base for future road work. Work from Paynesville to New London will be done as well. There will be alternating lane closures and a flagging operation. Work should be done by next Tuesday, weather permitting.