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Living History: Funeral dispute led to terroristic threat charge

5 years ago

Excerpts from the March 5, 2009 Pioneer Journal

• Funeral dispute led to terroristic threat charge

A Menahga man was charged with terroristic threat and domestic assault crimes in Wadena County District Court in a dispute that escalated from a request to turn off a cell phone at a funeral.

According to Wadena County District Court records, Timothy Alan Sandberg, 46, became angry at a man at a family funeral who asked him to turn off his cell phone during the ceremony.

Later on that night, court records said, the defendant confronted the man's girlfriend, whom he blamed for the request to turn off the cell phone. He accused her of "starting [expletive]," and when the defendant was asked to move the argument outside so as to not bother family members who were grieving, Sandberg allegedly said, "You better call the cops because I'll [expletive] kill you." Asked what he meant, he repeated, "That's right, I'll kill you."

The victims got in their car and left town.

Witnesses reported they heard the threats being made and believed them to be serious. The incidents occurred Feb. 1.

Sandberg has a domestic violence-related conviction from July 2002.

He was charged with terroristic threats - reckless disregard risk and domestic assault on Feb. 19. His first appearance was set for March 16.

15 years ago

Excerpts from the March 4, 1999 Pioneer Journal

• County prepares to build $600,000 transfer station

It's been a long time coming. A transfer station for the Wadena County is something many waste haulers wanted, especially after the July shutdown of Quadrant. Now that it's been approved, commissioners are looking at $600,000 building plans.

During the past two county board meetings, commissioners have been meeting with Fred Doran, the senior environmental engineer of R.W. Beck in Minneapolis, who is designing the new facility. Doran and Wadena County Solid Waste and Zoning Director Greg Kempf have attended both meetings to help commissioners make decisions on how and when the transfer station should be built.

Commissioner Lyle Freer said they needed to look at what the future holds.

"If you look at your neighbors, all have transfer stations," Doran said, indicating that processing more than 20 tons of garbage a day is unlikely, indicating that current plans will likely satisfy any future size needs.

30 years ago

Excerpts from the March 6,1984 Pioneer Journal

• Two women injured Friday when struck by van

Two elderly women from the Verndale-Hewitt area were seriously injured on Friday as they crossed Colfax Avenue SE and Jefferson Avenue when they were struck by a van driven by Carl Herbert Gonderman, 72, Wadena.

A witness at the scene reported to the police department that the women were crossing north to The Uptown Cafe corner when the Gonderman vehicle made a left turn off of Jefferson onto Colfax SE.

Florice Paggen, 73, Verndale, and Clarice Christianson, 77, Hewitt, were rushed to Tri-County Hospital for treatment and observation.

Both were reported in stable condition, but Mrs. Christianson was transferred to St. Luke's Hospital in Fargo the same day with head injuries, ambulance operator William Jacobson said.

Mrs. Paggen remained hospitalized over the weekend. Jacobson said both women sustained extensive injuries.

No damage occurred to the Gonderman van, authorities said.

50 years ago

Excerpts from the March 5, 1964 Pioneer Journal

• Fire causes about $8,000 damage to Gopher Cafe

A fire, doing damage estimated at around $8,000, gutted the basement of the Gopher Cafe in Wadena Friday morning.

The fire broke out about 12:50 a.m. and was finally contained around 2:30 a.m. It was held primarily to the basement with the most damage to the upstairs resulting from smoke and water. No one was injured.

According to Bud Klein, Wadena Fire Chief, the blaze appears to have started when the water heater exploded, because most of the heavy damage is centered around the water heater and furnace.

The hardest damage occurred to floor joints, with some being burned two-thirds away. Further plans call for the cafe to be remodeled, with no definite date on this matter having been established.

The Shell gas station next door sustained only smoke and some water damage.