Fire and Rescue Department Issues July Report
(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department responded to a total of 59 calls during the month of July. The local fire department responded to 18 fires, 10 rescues, and 14 investigations. The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department had five mutual aid calls, two with Merrill, two with Oyens, and
once with Orange City. The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department had 12 requests for services. Fire Chief Dave Schipper says that on Saturday, July 20th the firefighters answered seven emergency calls, three of which were at the same time. You will recall it was on that day when strong winds of more than 50 mph blew through Le Mars knocking down power lines, trees, and even caused a semi truck and livestock trailer to overturn. Chief Schipper also notes that 25 firefighters donated a total of 118 hours for the Plymouth County Fair for events and fair coverage.
Tran Walker Found Guilty Of Murdering Former Girl Friend And Acquaintance
(Sioux City) — The Sioux City man accused of two counts of first degree murder in the stabbing deaths of his former girlfriend and an acquaintance has been found guilty.
Judge Tod Deck found 19-year-old Tran Walker guilty of the deaths of 17-year-old Paiten Sullivan and 18-year-old Felipe Negron Jr. in January of 2018.
Judge Deck presided over the bench trial of Walker, and rejected
a claim by the defense that Walker may have been insane or had diminished capacity:
Victim’s advocate Mark Skaff read a statement on behalf of the
families of both victims following the verdict:
A sentencing date will be set for Walker in the near future.
Le Mars Police Department To Host “National Night Out” Event
(Le Mars) — Next Tuesday, August 6th, is National Night Out and the Le Mars Police Department will hold an open house at the new police headquarters to mark the occasion. Assistant Police Chief Justin Daale says it has become a popular event for the community. He says the Le Mars Police Department will hold the open house inside the garage area.
Daale says National Night Out was established to help build community relations with local police departments, and to encourage people to get to know their neighbors and look out for them.
The Le Mars Police Assistant Chief says refreshments will be served during the National Night Out event scheduled for Le Mars.
Daale says youngsters will also have the opportunity to register for a bicycle that will be given away that evening. Daale says National Night Out is an opportunity to get to know the local police officers.
Daale tells of the time for the National Night Out activities.
Law Enforcement Officials Lose Evidence On Murder/Rape Case
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – Law enforcement officials say they have lost track of evidence from a 1980 murder case that an Iowa inmate wants to examine for DNA that could prove his innocence or guilt.
The missing evidence comes in the case of William Beeman, who is serving a life sentence in the stabbing death of 22-year-old Michiel Winkel.
Its absence could prevent the public from knowing definitively
whether Beeman was the right man in the rape and killing of Winkel – or should be Iowa’s first inmate exonerated by DNA.
Winkel’s nude body was found in April 1980 at Wildcat Den State Park near Muscatine. Beeman was convicted based largely on a confession that he claims was coerced.
His lawyers filed a motion seeking DNA testing on a sexual assault kit that included sperm recovered from Winkel and items of her clothing found at the scene.
But the Division of Criminal Investigation and Muscatine County
Sheriff’s Office said last week that they have searched and cannot find the evidence.
A court hearing is set for next week.
Former Felon Charged With Second Degree Murder In Union County
CRESTON, Iowa (AP) – A man has been charged with second-degree murder in the slaying of a woman in southern Iowa’s Union County.
Court records say 37-year-old Charles Keeton, of Creston, also is
charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm. His attorney didn’t immediately return a call Friday from The Associated Press. Keeton is scheduled to be arraigned Aug. 9.
Keeton is accused of shooting to death 44-year-old Christy Hribal at a Creston apartment she was visiting. A court record says Keeton was found there with a .22-caliber rifle.
Foxhoven Files Lawsuit Against Governor Reynolds And The State
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Ousted Iowa Department of Human Services Director Jerry Foxhoven says aides to Gov. Kim Reynolds are lying when they say he never objected to paying a portion of the salary of a governor’s staffer out of his budget.
Foxhoven said Thursday he raised the issue more than once and
wouldn’t agree to pay most of the salary of the governor’s deputy chief of staff, Paige Thorson, without legal advice. Foxhoven says he thought it might be illegal because Thorson would no longer be doing significant Medicaid work in the new fiscal year, which began July 1.
Reynolds issued a statement Thursday afternoon saying Foxhoven never raised such concerns and never asked the staff for a legal opinion. Reynolds says “I would never ask anyone to do something they thought was illegal.”
She says many factors contributed to her decision to seek Foxhoven’s resignation but didn’t list those factors.
Foxhoven is filing a legal claim of wrongful termination, alleging
he was the victim of whistleblower retaliation. Foxhoven was asked to step down in June. The 67-year-old administrator gained attention earlier when his frequent workplace praise of the late rapper Tupac Shakur came to light after his firing.
Des Moines Police Charge Man For Month Old Murder Case
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Police have charged a man with murder in the shooting death of a Des Moines man more than a month ago.
Des Moines police said Thursday that detectives had charged 20-
year-old Michael Resco Lyke Jr. with first-degree murder, attempted murder, intimidation with a weapon and assault causing injury.
Lyke, of Des Moines, is charged in connection with a June 28
shooting that killed 41-year-old Earl Marcello Caldwell, of Des Moines.
Another man, 39-year-old Des Moines resident Littleton William Clark, was injured.
Court records don’t indicate if Lyke has an attorney who could
answer questions about his arrest.
Man Dies From Explosion
BRITT, Iowa (AP) – Authorities say a man has died after being injured in an explosion at a northern Iowa business.
The Hancock County Sheriff’s Office said Thursday that 62-year-old Gary Olson died in the explosion Wednesday morning at Miller and Sons Golf Cars just south of Britt.
KIMT-TV reports an investigation shows the explosion occurred when a metal barrel used to collect oil somehow ignited.
Olson was flown to University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City, where he died Wednesday afternoon.
Mark Miller, an owner of the business, was injured when he fell
while trying to help Olson. He was being treated for a head injury at a Mason City hospital.
The State Fire Marshal’s Office is investigating the explosion.