Home News Friday News, February 8th

Friday News, February 8th


Floyd Valley Healthcare Official Honored By Le Mars Police

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Police Department awarded its “Citizen of the Year-Blue Line” award to the Floyd Valley Healthcare’s chief engineer. The short ceremony took place Thursday morning at Floyd Valley. Tim Paul says he was surprised by the honor.

Paul explains as to reasons why the police department chose to honor him with its “Citizen of the Year-Blue Line” award.

The Floyd Valley staff person says his curiosity led to an even deeper investigation of the suspicious man’s background.

The Le Mars Police Department says the couple were wanted for a possible abduction of a two year old who they had with them at Floyd Valley. With Tim’s work he was able to track the suspects through the hospital and was also able to get vehicle description and pictures. That info was relayed to Camden, SC PD which they blasted on social media. Within a day Law Enforcement had both subjects apprehended and the child placed in safe care.
Paul says he is humbled by the honor, and appreciates the cooperative connection between Floyd Valley Healthcare and the Le Mars Police Department. The Le Mars Police Department says its great to have a strong working relationship with local businesses, and this incident proves just that. This is why strong community policing is needed in a community. We hope to continue to have a great working relationship with the entire
community of Le Mars.



Trial Delayed For Castana Suspect Accused Of Killing Grandmother

ONAWA, Iowa (AP) – A trial has been delayed for a man accused of killing his grandmother in western Iowa.
Monona County District Court records say a judge Wednesday set Sept. 10 as the new trial starting date for 21-year-old Eliot Stowe. The trial had been scheduled to begin this coming Tuesday.
Stowe has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder. He’s accused of fatally beating 66-year-old Cheryl Stowe at the home they shared in rural Castana. Her body was found June 27 about a mile and a half (3 kilometers) from the home.
His attorney has filed notice to the court that Stowe will use an
insanity defense .



9-Year Old Victim Testifies During Kidnapping Trial

ELDORA, Iowa (AP) – A 9-year-old boy clutched a stuffed animal as he told a judge that his father’s girlfriend often withheld food and helped lock him under a staircase in the basement at their Iowa home.
The boy wept at times as he testified Wednesday against 40-year-old Traci Tyler. She is being tried separately from her boyfriend, Alex Shadlow. Both are charged with kidnapping.
The couple is accused of locking the boy in the basement for at
least nine hours a day during the summer of 2017. Investigators say the boy was forced to sleep on the concrete and use a tin cup as a toilet.
The boy says Tyler also made him carry a backpack filled with rocks.
The Des Moines Register reports the boy said the basement was
“supercold” and that he couldn’t get out of the enclosure.



Farm Home Explodes – Injures Man

BROOKLYN, Iowa (AP) – A Poweshiek County farmer has been injured in a suspected gas explosion that leveled his home.
The Des Moines Register reports the explosion happened just before 10 a.m. Thursday on the 70-acre farm of Wayne Cheney that sits about 13 miles southeast of Brooklyn in east-central Iowa. Cheney was among a number of people interviewed by police in the disappearance last summer of 20-year-old Mollie Tibbetts from her hometown of Brooklyn. Her body was later
found in a cornfield, and former farmhand Cristhian Bahena Rivera has been charged with first-degree murder in her stabbing death.
Poweshiek County Sheriff Tom Kriegel says Cheney was sent to an Iowa City hospital with burns and was conscious when first responders reached him. He is expected to survive.
Kriegel says Cheney told firefighters he was trying to light a space heater when the home exploded. Investigators believe gas had filled the house.



Attorney General Miller Requesting Additional Funds To Handle Extra Cases 

(Des Moines) — Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller says the 215 attorneys, investigators and support staff in his agency are working under difficult circumstances due to spending constraints.

Miller met Thursday with legislators who draft
the budget for the Iowa Department of Justice. Miller described the various restricted accounts his agency has tapped to make up for a 37 percent decrease in state taxpayer support of his agency over the past decade.

Miller’s office fields consumer complaints.
Prosecutors in the Miller’s office were called in by county attorneys to handle more than 100 criminal cases in the past year, including 28 murder trials. In addition, Miller says there’s been a dramatic increase in the number of people convicted of a crime who appeal the judge’s or jury’s decision.

Attorneys from Miller’s office also represent more than 200 state agencies, boards and commissions.
Miller says those lawyers are handling an increasing number of complicated employment cases. About 23 percent of the attorneys in Miller’s office work on child support cases.



Senate Subcommittee Passes Bill To Band Cellphone Use While Driving

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A bill to ban the use of cellphones while driving has advanced out of an Iowa Senate subcommittee.
The bill would prohibit drivers from using cellphones or similar
electronic devices unless they are in hands-free mode. It expands current Iowa law that bans texting while driving.
Public safety and health care professionals on the job are exempted.
If approved, drivers could be fined $100. Those using a device who cause serious crashes would face much higher potential fines and driver’s license suspensions.
House Speaker Linda Upmeyer says she wants more information before committing to supporting a bill but acknowledged lawmakers have heard from a lot of people frustrated by distracted driving.
The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says 17 states have
approved hands-free only laws for all drivers.



University Of Iowa Criticized For Banning Student Organization

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – A federal judge says the University of Iowa was wrong to strip a Christian student group of its registered status after the organization barred a gay student from a leadership position.
The Des Moines Register reports that U.S. District Judge Stephanie M. Rose granted a permanent injunction banning the university from rejecting the status of the group, Business Leaders in Christ.
Rose says the university unevenly applies its human rights policy by allowing other groups to limit membership based on religious views, race, sex and other protected characteristics.
Business Leaders in Christ said it denied the student’s request
because the group requires leaders to affirm a statement of faith rejecting homosexuality.
The university says it plans to follow the court’s decision.



Officials Consider Removing Dam On Wapsipinicon River

LITTLETON, Iowa (AP) – A project that will remove a dam from the Wapsipinicon River in eastern Iowa may create hazardous ice conditions for snowmobilers and ice anglers upstream.
The Iowa Natural Resources Department says work is expected to begin Monday on the Littleton Dam in Buchanan County. Rock rapids are being emplaced so the water will pool to about the same level provided by the low-head dam.
Officials say water under the ice upstream will drop as the dam is
removed, leaving several feet of empty space beneath. What appears to be stable ice could collapse unpredictably.
The low-head dam presented a danger over the years. Nine people have died near the dam since it was built in 1934.