April Baumgarten joined the Grand Forks Herald May 19, 2015, and covers business and political stories. She grew up on a ranch 10 miles southeast of Belfield, where her family continues to raise registered Hereford cattle. She double majored in communications and history/political science at Jamestown (N.D.) College, now known as University of Jamestown. During her time at the college, she worked as a reporter and editor-in-chief for the university's newspaper, The Collegian. Baumgarten previously worked for The Dickinson Press as the Dickinson city government and energy reporter in 2011 before becoming the editor of the Hazen Star and Center Republican. She then returned to The Press as a news editor, where she helped lead an award-winning newsroom in recording the historical oil boom.
Have a story idea? Contact Baumgarten at 701-780-1248.
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GRAND FORKS — Leaders with Altru Health System said they would like to build a planned $250 million hospital at the current Grand Forks campus, but executives are not ruling out off-campus locations. "By far, the preference would be to be on this campus," Altru Chief Strategy Officer Dennis Reisnour said Thursday, Dec. 7, during an interview. "We're working to figure out how we can do that."
BOTTINEAU, N.D. — A Bottineau man has been acquitted of charges that he sexually abused a child multiple times. A jury found Heath Lester Vivier, born in 1986, not guilty Thursday, Dec. 7, in Bottineau County District Court. He initially appeared Dec. 7, 2015, in court on a Class AA felony charge of continuous sexual abuse of a child identified in court documents only by her initials.
Three people have been accused of housing a meth lab in an East Grand Forks apartment. James Marvin Sackett, 33, of East Grand Forks, and two Grand Forks residents, Joshua Clyde Roudebush, 24, and Sonya Lee Barbieur, 32, were each charged Friday in Polk County District Court with manufacturing methamphetamine, a first-degree felony. If convicted, they face a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison and a $1 million fine.
EDINBURG, N.D. — It's not uncommon for Dr. Charlotte Klose to drive 80 miles to see her patients. "We cover a huge area," she said. "I travel all the way to west of Langdon, N.D. I go south of Grand Forks to the Thompson, N.D., area." The Edinburg doctor travels all over eastern North Dakota making house calls, or rather barn calls. Klose is among a rare breed in rural America: large animal veterinarians. Vets play a key role in helping ranchers succeed. That often means long hours and being accessible at night, on weekends and during holidays.
BISMARCK—A national study says fewer North Dakota students are taking part in risky behavior involving underage sex, drinking, tobacco use and distracted driving, but state educators say more work is needed as reports of electronic bullying and attempted suicide continue to climb.
It's hard to imagine what a 1 million-square-foot facility looks like. Imagine if the Metrodome were built in Thief River Falls instead of Minneapolis. The 900,000-square-foot stadium that was once home to the Twins and Vikings is about 100,000 square feet smaller than Digi-Key Electronics' expansion in Thief River Falls.
GRAND FORKS, N.D.—Customers who wait until the last minute to get a Christmas tree may not have much to choose from as suppliers deal with a tightening market, industry leaders said this week. Parts of the country may see a lower supply than normal, according to the National Christmas Tree Association. As a result, customers are shopping early, said association spokesman Doug Hundley.
MINNEAPOLIS—A defense attorney claims a Clearbrook, Minnesota, man sentenced this week for shooting at a U.S. Customs and Border Protection helicopter is a "nonviolent, peace-loving human being" who overreacted to what he believed was a life-threatening situation.
GRAFTON, N.D.—A Park River man who allegedly told investigators he had hundreds of child porn images on an external hard drive has pleaded guilty. Steven Dale Dishner, 42, entered an open guilty plea Wednesday in Walsh County District Court in far northeast North Dakota to 100 Class C felony counts of possession of certain materials prohibited. He was charged in April with 486 counts of possessing child porn, but the remaining charges will be dismissed, said Kelley Cole, Walsh County state's attorney and prosecutor in the case.
FARGO — The accused ringleader of an international drug trafficking operation connected to overdose deaths in Grand Forks told co-conspirators to remain quiet and tried to warn them about an investigation targeting his associates, according to new federal charges. Daniel Vivas Ceron, 37, pleaded not guilty Tuesday, Nov. 29, in North Dakota's U.S. District Court in Fargo to obstruction of justice, an accusation that was added this month to a list of charges that were filed in June 2015.