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Miracles are a retelling in small letters of the very same story which is written across the whole world in letters too large for some of us to see.

- C.S. Lewis

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Minot Police are investigating a fatality crash in southeast Minot....

    MINOT, ND - Minot Police are investigating a fatality crash in southeast Minot that happened at the intersection of 31st Ave and 13th St SE. Officers say the crash involved s motorcycle and an SUV. A 22-year old man died in the accident that occured around 8:30 pm Friday evening. Police say the man's identity will not be released until notification is given to family. No further details were released.


     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - North Dakota's health department says it has received 19 applications to open medical marijuana dispensaries in Fargo and Bismarck. The health department says eight of the applications are for the Bismarck/Mandan area and 11 are for Fargo. WDAY-TV reports the application period for those two regions ended Tuesday. Health department officials expect to select the dispensaries around Sept. 21 and the plan is to have the businesses open by mid-2019.
     Voters legalized medical marijuana in 2016. The health department designated eight zones across the state where the dispensaries can operate and the application process is being staggered.


     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Attorneys for North Dakota and the federal government are asking an appeals court to reject the state of Missouri's challenge to a massive upstream Missouri River water project.
     The $244 million Northwest Area Water Supply project aims to bring Missouri River water to as many as 82,000 people in northwestern North Dakota, giving them a reliable source of quality water. The state of Missouri worries that the project it describes as "monumental in scope" will diminish its own water supplies as well as harm its farming and shipping industries - and possibly even alter its state borders.
     U.S. Department of Justice attorney Anna Katselas and Special Assistant North Dakota Attorney General Nessa Horewitch Coppinger argue in court documents filed this month that Missouri doesn't have a legal case and is exaggerating its claims.
     The larger issue is a technical matter of whether Missouri has legal standing to sue the federal government on behalf of its residents. But the underlying dispute centers around how much water NAWS will actually use.
     Missouri maintains it will deplete the river by 3.5 billion gallons each year, an amount Solicitor General John Sauer says would cause "manifold injuries to Missouri's sovereign and proprietary interests."
     Those include drinking water for 3 million people, the fertility of over 1 million acres of farmland, a multimillion-dollar shipping industry, state wildlife habitat and recreational facilities, and even the state's water borders with Kansas and Illinois, he said.
     Horewitch Coppinger countered that Missouri doesn't own the river and said the state "wildly overstates the size and potential impacts of the project" to a river system that has the capacity for more than 23 trillion gallons of water.
     "If the reservoir system capacity were scaled down to one gallon of water, the annual NAWS withdrawal would represent less than three drops," she said.
     Congress first authorized the NAWS project in 1986. It ran into a big snag in 2002 when the Canadian province of Manitoba sued over concerns about the possible transfer of harmful bacteria or other agents from the Missouri River Basin to the Hudson Bay Basin.
     The international dispute was resolved in June when the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation and the Manitoba government reached an agreement giving Canada a say in water treatment and monitoring.
     Missouri sued in 2009 over its fears of water depletion. U.S. District Judge Rosemary Collyer in Washington, D.C., has never ruled on the claims because she ruled last year that the state had no authority to sue the federal government over the matter. The state appealed.
     Missouri acknowledges that the Supreme Court has decided in many instances that states typically lack standing in such matters but argues there are exceptions in case law under which its claim fits. Katselas, the Justice Department attorney, disputes that.
     There's no guarantee that NAWS will ever be fully built. A combined $129 million in federal, state and local money has been spent so far on more than 225 miles of pipeline and other infrastructure, and the system currently serves about 25,000 people. But future state and federal funding is not guaranteed.

     ELGIN, N.D. (AP) - A volunteer firefighter accused of arson has pleaded not guilty to the charges against him. John Iszler is facing charges for fires that were set in Elgin earlier this year at a John Deere dealership and a rental property. The Bismarck Tribune reports the 25-year-old entered his plea Friday in federal court.
     Prosecutors say the New Year's Eve fire that destroyed the John Deere dealership resulted in more than $3 million in damages. Investigators say the fire at the apartment complex happened Feb. 25 and put a woman's life in danger. Prosecutors say that in both cases Iszler returned to the scenes to fight the blazes.


    BURNSVILLE, MN - Better Business Bureau® of Minnesota and North Dakota (BBB) is warning consumers about a newer scam that's affected other parts of the country and seems to have moved into our area - a fake "pop-up" alert scam which tells computer users that adult content has been detected on their computers. People are then urged to call an 877 number before closing the page or their "computer access will be disabled to prevent further damage to our network." The alert also says, "Financial data, Facebook Logins and credit card details are being stolen." However, these alerts are not legitimate and unknown entities behind them are fraudulent.

    "This is yet another scam that operates on fear and uncertainty," said Susan Adams Loyd, President and CEO of Better Business Bureau of Minnesota and North Dakota. "Fraudsters are counting on consumers being willing to make a payment to avoid potential embarrassment. We're telling people not to panic and not to play into the hands of scammers, as they are very likely bluffing."

    Though these "alerts" look scary, they only become dangerous when people call the phone numbers that accompany these messages. BBB urges people to simply close the page - or their browser - and the suspect alerts should go away. BBB recently received one of these alerts and called the support number listed - an 877 number. The person who answered claimed they were working with Microsoft (a claim that fraudsters often make) and offered to run a free scan of the affected machine. At that time, BBB ended the call. Allowing anyone remote access to your computer puts your device and sensitive personal and financial information at great risk.

    The malware which triggers these bogus alerts is often acquired by innocuous browsing of mainstream websites. A good way to avoid such alerts is to have anti-virus and anti-spyware protection on your computer. It's also best to avoid any suspicious or compromised websites. But it's important to know that anyone with a computer - regardless of their browsing habits - can receive such alerts.

    "The alert that was brought to our attention claimed the user had just five minutes to contact the support number provided to prevent their computer from being disabled or from any information loss," added Adams Loyd. "Obviously, that's very scary. People need to stay calm and recognize these alerts for what they are."

    BBB of Denver issued an alert on a similar scam late last year, wherein people received emails from self-proclaimed hackers who attempted to blackmail victims through a series of emails sent to victims' work email addresses. The first emails contained adult content and links to dating websites, soon followed by a message demanding payment - in Bitcoin - from those who had clicked on the links. In the subsequent message, the scammers also claimed to have hacked the victims' webcams and threatened to share captured video and screenshots from adult websites to people in the users' email and social media contact lists.

    In those cases, experts said such threats were likely empty ones. Though it is possible for scammers to hack webcams, BBB advises people not to make any payments to people claiming they have done so and to report any threats to local authorities, as blackmail is a crime. BBB also advises employees not to engage with any suspect emails they receive and to avoid clicking on links or attachments in such emails. It's also a good idea to cover your webcam when not using them for a Skype call or video chat.

    More recently, the Detroit Free Press reports that scammers are now contacting consumers via email and threatening to share their online browsing histories unless a payment is made. What's more, scammers in these cases have somehow gained access to old but legitimate usernames and passwords that victims have used at one time.

    BBB's advice to the public remains the same: don't panic. Keep in mind that a lot of personal information - including old usernames and passwords in some cases - has been made available through various high-profile data breaches in recent years.  Successful phishing attacks, wherein scammers gather sensitive personal data through impersonation schemes conducted via email, are another source of information fraudsters use to their advantage.

    If you're concerned about an alert you've received on your computer, contact BBB ( to report your experience and get expert advice. Don't call the phone numbers that appear within these alerts, as they're part of the scheme. When in doubt, exit out of the page you're on, close your browser or simply shut down your computer. If the alerts won't go away, you may need to contact a technical expert.


   (Copyright 2018 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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