Home News Monday Afternoon News, February 25th

Monday Afternoon News, February 25th


Le Mars and Merrill Fire Departments Respond To Hog Barn Fire

(Le Mars) — Firefighters from Le Mars and Merrill were at a hog confinement facility this (Monday) morning located 26876 220th Street, approximately six miles southwest of Le Mars for a reported hog barn fire. That alarm came in shortly before 7:00 a.m. The hog barn was empty at the time of the fire. Firefighters believe the hog barn may have sustained a “flash fire” since the curtain and P-C-P piping shows indications of some melting that occurred. Fire Chief Dave Schipper explains what had happened.

Schipper says the “flash fire” penetrated the ceiling and started the insulation on fire.

The Le Mars Fire Chief says this type of “flash fire” has occurred several times within the county within the past few years.

Firefighters were on the scene for a little more than two hours.



Valley Male Chorus To Perform Tonight At All-Saints St. Joseph Church

(Le Mars) — All Saints Parish – St. Joseph Church in Le Mars will be filled with the robust sounds of an all-male chorus this evening as the Valley Male Chorus of Rock Valley are scheduled to perform beginning at 7:30 p.m. Rich Koele (Cooley) is the group’s coordinator. He says the all-male chorus will
sing several Christian-themed musical selections.

Koele says most of the songs to be sung this evening may not immediately be recognized by the attendees, but each song will have a spiritual meaning.

Koele says on average the Valley Male Chorus performs around a dozen concerts each year, more when they travel out of state. He says the Valley Male Chorus has been performing for nearly five decades.

The event has free admission, but a free-will offering will be taken with proceeds to benefit the more than 2000 clients of Hope Haven.

Koele says there is also a division called Hope Haven International which provides refurbished wheelchairs to disabled and poverty individuals around the world. The Valley Male Chorus will perform this evening at the All-Saints Parish, St. Joseph Church beginning at 7:30 p.m.



Sioux City Diocese To Announce List Of Priests Accused Of Sexual Misbehavior 

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) – A Roman Catholic diocese in Iowa says it will release a list of 28 priests who have been credibly accused of sexually abusing minors over the last century.
The Diocese of Sioux City scheduled a news conference Monday afternoon to announce the list, which will then be posted on its website.
For years, advocates for abuse victims have been urging the diocese to take that step.
The diocese publicly promised in November that it would finalize the list and make it public. The vow came in response to an investigation by The Associated Press that exposed a 32-year cover-up of the Rev. Jerome Coyle, who had allegedly confessed to abusing more than 50 boys.
Diocese officials have met multiple times since then to review files and allegations dating back to its beginning in 1902.



Pregnant Woman Goes Into Labor While In Ambulance That Was Stuck In Snowbank

FAIRBANK, Iowa (AP) – Firefighters have rescued a woman in labor from an ambulance stranded in a snowdrift on a rural northeast Iowa highway.
Seven volunteers with the Fairbank department answered the call around 3 a.m. Sunday. The ambulance taking the woman from Oelwein to Waterloo had gotten stuck on Iowa Highway 281 a few miles west of Fairbank. Assistant chief Kevin Bodensteiner (BOH’-dehn-steye-nur) said Monday that two department members with blades on their pickup trucks joined him and the
department’s four-wheel-drive ambulance and drove through wind-whipped snow on the slippery highway to reach the other ambulance.
The trucks cleared a patch through the drift, and the firefighters
moved the woman into the Fairbank ambulance. Bodensteiner says they then took a different but still dicey route to Waterloo’s Allen Hospital, arriving around 5:45 a.m.
He says the woman’s grandmother told him the young woman delivered a baby girl later Sunday.
Fairbank sits about 108 miles (175 kilometers) northeast of Des Moines.



Conservation Official Found Guilty Of Embezzlement Has Sentencing Set

NEWTON, Iowa (AP) – An April sentencing has been scheduled for a former secretary at a central Iowa soil and water conservation district accused of embezzlement.
Jasper County District Court records say 39-year-old Jessica Rutter, of Newton, pleaded guilty to a theft charge. Her sentencing is set for April 15.
Her arrest followed a state audit in which auditors said Rutter acknowledged writing checks to herself that would typically double her pay from the Jasper County Soil and Water Conservation District. Auditors found 23 unauthorized checks were issued between 2015 and 2017 that amounted to nearly $20,000.