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    A woman in prison after pleading guilty to neglect in the death of her 3-week-old baby will get a new trial. A district court judge has vacated the sentence of 27-year-old Cassandra Black Elk, who pleaded guilty in May to felony child neglect. In a ruling on Tuesday, District Court Judge Daniel Borgen agreed with her claim that she received improper advice from her attorney when he told her to plead guilty. An autopsy found no evidence of abuse on neglect in the baby girl's death in February 2022 in Bismarck.

    The U.S. says it is tracking a suspected Chinese surveillance balloon that has been spotted over U.S. airspace for a couple days. The Pentagon decided not to shoot it down due to risks of harm for people on the ground. A senior defense official says the U.S. has “very high confidence” it is a Chinese high-altitude balloon, and says it was flying over sensitive sites to collect information. One of the places the balloon was spotted was Montana, which is home to one of the nation’s three nuclear missile silo fields at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Montana. The official spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive information.

    The U.S. Air Force is telling North Dakota leaders it believes a Chinese company’s plan to build a wet corn milling plant near the Grand Forks Air Force Base poses a national security threat. The Fufeng Group’s proposed $700 million project had been touted as an economic boon. Now opponents say the location 12 miles from the Air Force base creates the potential for espionage. The military isn't specifying what kind of security threat it's worried about, but Grand Forks Mayor Brandon Bochenski says he'll ask the City Council to deny building permits for the project and to refuse to connect it to public infrastructure. Fufeng officials are declining to comment.


    The South Dakota Senate has censured and reinstated a Republican senator who was suspended last week. Republican Sen. Julie Frye-Mueller was accused of harassing a legislative aide during an exchange about childhood vaccinations and breastfeeding. The Republican-controlled Senate overwhelmingly approved a report from an investigative committee that concluded Frye-Mueller had harassed a staff member of the Legislative Research Council. The aide filed a complaint last week detailing how Frye-Mueller told the aide her child could die from vaccinations and graphically discussed breastfeeding while her husband was in the room. Frye-Mueller and her husband have denied much of the aide’s complaint. But Senate lawmakers made it clear they believed the aide.

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