A Perham area resident was scammed and lost $9,000, thinking there would be a large inheritance. Sheriff deputies on Dec. 29 said they have suspects in mind. Authorities warn residents of Otter Tail County to beware of people who contact you posing as attorneys or banking personnel, saying you are entitled to a large inheritance from a distant relative or wealthy individual. A county resident could be provided with fake bank statements, birth certificates and other fake documents if one questions the legitimacy of the offer.
Sheriff deputies again warn county residents not to fall for what's widely known as "the grandparent scam." The potential scam starts when a caller calls a county resident to say his or her grandchild is in trouble, and possibly in jail," says County Sheriff Administrative Lt. Keith Van Dyke. "The next thing the caller says is that your grandchild needs money. This should raise a red flag," says Van Dyke. Because most grandparents have tender hearts when it comes to their beloved grandchildren, a first tendency is to help.
Residents of Otter Tail County, and those who live farther away, can and should take advantage of winter travels to Maplewood State Park east of Pelican Rapids and to Glendalough State Park northeast of Battle Lake. The trips are well worth it, whether it's just for drives through these state parks to admire winter beauty or stopping to take part in many winter activities. These locations are popular for hikers, cross-country skiers and others.
Tax forfeited lands, HRA policies reviewed County commissioners, on Dec. 19, met with representatives of the Housing and Redevelopment Authority (HRA) to discuss tax forfeited land and the role of the HRA in acquiring properties to assist low-income families. In many counties in Minnesota, Otter Tail County included, tax-forfeited properties, acquired by the HRA, are converted into affordable housing.
Truck falls through ice at Marion Lake A truck fell through ice near the public access at Marion Lake, southwest of Perham, at 10:37 a.m. on Dec. 25. There were no injuries, since the driver and passenger were not in the vehicle when it crashed through the ice. The exact location was near Kleins Drive. Thieves linked to two county burglaries
Man pulled from icy waters at Walker Lake A man was pulled from cold water at Walker Lake, just north of Otter Tail Lake, after his snowmobile crashed through thin ice on Dec. 16 close to noon. Ottertail city rescue crews pulled the man, Hubert Hovland, out of the water and transported him to the hospital in Perham. "The victim had been in the water for about a half hour and suffered severe hypothermia," said County Sheriff Administrative Lt. Keith Van Dyke.
Two drivers, one of who was injured, were involved in traffic accidents near Henning, one in the early morning and the other in the early evening on Dec. 11. A Deer Creek resident rolled a vehicle close to 6 a.m. at the intersection of Highways 67 and 140, northeast of Henning. The driver steered right while avoiding a north-bound vehicle that crossed the center line. "The roadways were snow covered and icy when the accident took place," said County Sheriff Administrative Lt. Keith Van Dyke. "It appeared that the driver escaped injury."
Otter Tail County taxpayers will be seeing a smaller increase in their taxes in 2018 than they did in 2017. During the county board's annual levy and budget hearing, held Dec. 12, board members and County Auditor-Treasurer Wayne Stein said the percent of levy increase from 2017 to 2018 will likely drop, from 4.86 percent to 3.48 percent. At press time, a final decision was slated be made during the regular meeting of the county board on Tuesday, Dec. 19, at 9:30 a.m.
An EcoCenter for outdoor learning, research and creative activities—from biology to creative writing—will likely be built in Eagle Lake Township, south of Battle Lake. The center would be a cooperative effort with the University of Minnesota in Morris.
It was an honor for family members sharing a Thanksgiving dinner this year at Broen Home in Fergus Falls with Star Lake native Marcella Lange, 103. Also at the table was her sister-in-law Delores Voigt, 94, who also grew up near Star Lake. Both Marcella and Delores were raised on farms west of Dent and east of Pelican Rapids. Joining them at the Thanksgiving table were Delores' daughter and husband, Sharon and Tom Hintgen, and their son Mark. Marcella is still three years removed from matching her mother who lived to be 106.