Chad Richardson is the publisher and editor at the Hastings Star Gazette. He was the general manager of the Farmington Independent and Rosemount Town Pages from 2000 to 2007. He previously worked at the Star Gazette from 1996 to 2000 as a photographer and reporter. He also worked as a photographer and writer at the Pope County Tribune in Glenwood.
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While Abra Hovgaard slept comfortably in her home early Tuesday morning, her friends received a frightening e-mail from her. She had been robbed at gunpoint, had her cash and credit cards stolen and was desperately seeking money so she could fly home. It was all a hoax. Someone had taken control of her e-mail account and sent out the e-mail, hoping to find someone in the United States gullible enough to wire $2,450 to England, immediately. "As far as I know, nobody sent money," Hovgaard said.
A groundbreaking ceremony to celebrate the construction of a new Highway 61 bridge in Hastings over the Mississippi River is planned to begin at 11 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 22, at Levee Park in Hastings. An informational open house is planned to begin at Hastings City Hall at noon on Sept. 22.
By 10:30 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 5, Nicole and Marshall Halbach were fast asleep. It had been a great weekend up to that point, and with Labor Day, they were excited to spend another day off with their two boys and the friends who were sound asleep in their basement. Then a speeding car flew into their lawn, smashed into their Cadillac and came to a stop. The car was driven by an 18-year-old Hastings man, Joseph Andrew Walsh, who was booked on probable cause charges of driving under the influence, hit and run and hit and run with property damage.
Thanks to security camera video, Hastings police have already made an arrest in a string of thefts that occurred here early Sept. 11. A 19-year-old Hastings man, Jordan William Salmela, was arrested and booked on charges of felony theft and a gross misdemeanor of contributing to the delinquency of a minor. A 14-year-old Hastings boy has been referred to juvenile court. Ken Warner, who operates X-treme Wire in Hastings, a home security and home theater company, has cameras mounted outside his garage.
A garage and truck fire spewed black smoke high into the sky over Hastings at approximately 2 p.m. Monday. The fire destroyed the garage and a Ford truck. The fire occurred at 745 W. Fourth St. Firefighters from the Hastings Fire Department were on scene and battling the blaze. Fourth Street and area roads were closed as crews fought the fire. More information will be posted here when it becomes available.
Early Saturday morning, at least one individual went on a crime spree in Hastings between the swimming pool and the fire station. The person entered six vehicles and made away with at least one laptop. What the thief didn't know, though, was that he was being recorded as he stole that laptop. Ken Warner, who operates X-treme Wire, a home security and home theater business in Hastings, had his video camera rolling outside his home as the thief entered his car at 2:24 a.m. on Sept. 11. Warner released the video Monday with the hope that other residents here could help identify the thief.
Another serious accident has occurred at the intersection of County Road 46 and Goodwin Avenue just west of Hastings. One person died in the crash. The two-vehicle crash happened Friday afternoon. Involved was a semi-truck from RC Transportation from Marshfield, Wisc., and a Mercury Mystique. The driver of the Mystique died in the crash. She was Deborah Ann Antko, 57, of Apple Valley. She was southbound on Goodwin and had stopped at the stop sign at the intersection.
Jake Lodewegen's first job came at the age of 14, so it should come as no surprise that now, the 23-year-old runs two businesses. Ten years ago, while fishing the walleye opener with family near Orr, Lodewegen and the owner of the fishing resort got to talking. When the resort owner found out Lodewegen was 14, he casually extended a job offer to the youngster. "Now that you are 14, you could work here now," the man told the Hastings boy.
By the end of this week, the Hastings cross country team will have raced three times this season. Each one of those races will have been dramatically different than the others. The season's first meet was an extreme race, through streams and up and down river beds. The second race was held on a relatively flat and very fast course in Eagan. The third race, the team's only home meet of the year on Thursday, will be held at St.
The Hastings girls swimming team had no trouble beating Forest Lake on Thursday, getting out to a big lead en route to an 88-77 win. Hastings won every event. The swimmer of the meet for the Raiders was sophomore Kate Reilly. "She had a great first meet," Hastings coach Katie McAlpin said. "Her individual times were right on. She is going to be a great asset to our team this year." Hastings plays host to Cretin-Derham Hall in the first home meet of the season, set for 6:30 p.m. Thursday at the Hastings Middle School pool. The team also has a fund-raiser planned for Saturday, Sept. 11.