Sam's Top 5 Things to Know for Wednesday

(Top five update) Measles Reaches 60 Confirmed Cases

The outbreak is the largest since 1990, when 460 cases were diagnosed, leading to three fatalities.

1. Trump asked Comey to end Flynn investigation: report

THE HILL: The New York Times reported yesterday that President Trump asked former FBI Director James Comey to end the federal investigation into former national security adviser Michael Flynn in February.

The report said Comey wrote in a memo shortly after the meeting that Trump told him, “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go.”

The meeting took place Feb. 14, one day after Flynn resigned, according to the Times, which reported that Comey's memo was part of an effort to create a paper trail documenting what he saw as Trump’s improper influence on the investigation. Comey’s memo says he did not respond to Trump about the probe, but agreed with him that Flynn is “a good guy.”

The White House denied the memo’s version of events, telling reporters, “this is not a truthful or accurate portrayal of the conversation between the President and Mr. Comey.”

2. Minneapolis-St. Paul area grew by nearly 200,000 since 2010

Pioneer Press: Growth in the urban cores of Minneapolis and St. Paul continue to spur the region’s population gains, according to a new report by the Metropolitan Council.

The preliminary report, released Tuesday, says the seven-county metro area grew by 191,628 residents between 2010 and 2016. Both St. Paul and Minneapolis saw significant gains:

  • St. Paul’s population grew to 304,442 in 2016, an increase from the 300,353 estimated in 2015 and the 285,068 from the 2010 U.S. Census. The 2010-2016 growth is a 6.8 percent increase.
  • Minneapolis’ population hit 419,952 in 2016, an increase from the 412,517 estimated in 2015 and the 382,578 from the 2010 U.S. Census. The 2010-2016 growth is a healthy 9.8 percent increase.
  • The region as a whole hit an estimated 3,041,195 in 2016, up from 2,849,567 in the 2010 Census, a 6.7 percent increase.

The Met Council develops the report each year for the region, which includes Hennepin, Ramsey, Dakota, Anoka, Washington, Carver and Scott counties. Met Council’s report says the region’s growth reflects the Twin Cities’ diversified and competitive economy. But it also cautions that challenges remain and urges transit-friendly development to promote “efficient land use” and efforts to preserve and provide clean water.

3. Minneapolis council committee approves $50,000 fine, 3-day suspension for Surdyk's

STAR TRIBUNE: Under the proposal, Jim Surdyk must pay $50,000 by May 31 and close on three July Sundays.

A Minneapolis City Council committee on Tuesday approved a $50,000 fine and three-day liquor license suspension for Jim Surdyk after he opened the doors of his liquor and cheese shop on a Sunday in March, almost four months before the legal Sunday liquor sales takes effect.

Under the deal, which must get final approval by the City Council next week, Surdyk will pay the fine by May 31 and his northeast Minneapolis liquor store must be closed on three Sundays — July 2, 9 and 16. Surdyk was not at the committee meeting, but his daughters, Melissa and Molly, were there.

4. Marvel has cancelled their Black Lives Matter comic due to poor sales

HEAT STREET:  The comic Black Panther & The Crew is getting the axe after poor sales, just two issues after its launch. Its cancellation comes just weeks after a Marvel VP revealed that comics with forced messages of “diversity” were responsible for the publisher’s sales slump.

Joined by Luke Cage, Manifold, Misty Knight, and Storm, the superhero who entered the limelight with Captain America: Civil War gathers his all-black crew of superheroes to investigate the death of a civil rights activist who died in police custody. It has echoes of Sandra Bland’s death.

Set in a near-future Harlem-turned-police state patrolled by robotic police officers controlled by a private security contractor, the comic has every element you’d expect from a comic attempting to tell a story inspired by Black Lives Matter.

Coates explained to The Verge that Marvel decided to kill the publication due to poor sales, and that there wouldn’t be any continuation after the current story arc ends in its sixth and final issue. The market spoke, and Marvel listened.

5. Girl Scout leader on the lam after stealing $15,000 worth of cookies

Fox News: A Girl Scout leader from Kentucky has gone on the run after allegedly stealing more than $15,000 worth of cookies from not only her own troop, but maybe neighboring troops as well.

Leah Ann Vick, of Auxier, Ky., was formally indicted by a Pike County jury on a charge of “felony theft by unlawful taking,” and faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted. Authorities are currently looking for Vick, 26, who they believe to be actively evading law enforcement.

The crime originally occurred on Feb. 1, per the indictment. Vick picked up a large order of cookies for her Wilderness Road chapter — and perhaps a few orders belonging to other troops — in Pikesville, Ky.

Vick was then supposed to return to pay for the cookies once they had been sold (the local troops don’t normally provide payment up front), but she never went back. The Girl Scouts also say they have no record of Vick dropping off her troop’s shipment with her girls.

The district attorney said, “She picked up the cookies and never took them to them, so we don’t know what she did with them. She has never paid for any of them and, anyone who has tried to contact her about them has not been able to contact her.”

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