Home News Thursday Afternoon News, September 12th

Thursday Afternoon News, September 12th


Elementary Students Participate On Farm Tour Field Trip

(Le Mars) — 217 elementary students had an up-close experience of farm animals today. It was all part of the Le Mars Area Chamber of Commerce Agriculture Committee sponsored annual Ag Tour. Third and fourth grade students from Le Mars Community Franklin, Clark, and Kluckholn, as well as students from Gehlen Catholic, Remsen St. Mary’s, and MMCRU participated in the four site farm tour. Jordon Sitzmann serves as the Vice President of the Chamber Agriculture Committee and explains the purpose behind the tour.

The Chamber Agriculture Committee has sponsored the tour for more than 20 years. Sitzmann explains what was featured on today’s agriculture tour.

Sitzmann says the teachers also appreciate the agriculture tour, and often incorporate aspects of the tour as part of their curriculum.

As for the students, Sitzmann says the experience of touring a farm within their community, is something that will remain as a long-term memory.

Following the morning-long farm tours, the Chamber Agriculture Committee with the assistance of the Plymouth County Pork Producers, Plymouth County Cattlemen Association, and Plymouth County Farm Bureau, fed the elementary students a picnic lunch complete with grilled burgers, chips, a cookie, milk and ice cream. The lunch was provided at the West Floyd Park on the west side of town.



Public Defenders Refuse To Represent Man Charged With Murder Because Of Boss Moonlights As Police Officer

NEWTON, Iowa (AP) – Public defenders are seeking to stop representing an Iowa man charged with murder after revelations that their boss moonlights for a police department involved in the case.
Lawyers with the special defense unit of the State Public Defender’s office said in a filing Wednesday that they now believe their representation of Jeffrey Stendrup is a conflict of interest. They have asked a judge for permission to withdraw.
Their supervisor, special defense unit director Mike Adams, works on the side as a reserve police officer with the Colfax Police Department.
Its officers are prosecution witnesses against Stendrup, who is charged in the 2018 beating death of a man at a Colfax home.
The public defenders had disclosed the potential conflict at a hearing last month but indicated they planned to continue representing Stendrup.
They said in Wednesday’s filing that they have learned additional
information since then that changes their analysis.
If approved, their withdrawal would likely delay Stendrup’s Oct. 23 trial date.



Judge Approves Environmental Lawsuit To Proceed

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A judge has allowed a lawsuit challenging Iowa’s management of fertilizer and hog farm pollution in rivers and streams to move forward, handing a significant victory to environmental and community activist groups challenging the state’s voluntary farm pollution
Judge Robert Hanson says in a ruling filed Wednesday that Iowa
Citizens For Community Improvement and Food & Water Watch may proceed to trial in their effort to prove the state isn’t doing enough to clean up the Raccoon River, a drinking water source for 500,000 central Iowa customers of Des Moines Water Works.
The lawsuit claims the state has violated the rights of citizens to
clean water for recreational and drinking water uses. It asks the court to order mandatory limits on nitrogen and phosphorous pollution and for a moratorium on new and expanding hog confinement facilities.
A spokesman for the Iowa attorney general’s office says the state is reviewing the ruling and considering next steps.
A spokesman for Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds says she will not comment on the decision.



Janitor Pleads Guilty Of Taking Photos Inside Women’s Locker Room

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) – A former janitor has pleaded guilty to taking pictures of women in an eastern Iowa college locker room.
Linn County court records say 46-year-old Jeffrey Pospisil entered the pleas Wednesday to two counts of invasion of privacy. His sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 18.
The investigation began when students at Cornell College in Mount Vernon reported seeing a cellphone held in an open doorway leading to the locker room. A coach found Pospisil in the area. He was an employee with a business that provides custodial service for the college. He told police he
had been texting on the phone. But a search of the phone revealed more than 100 images taken in the locker room as students were fully or partially nude.  Pospisil was fired from his job.



More Help To Be Made Available For Motorists

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Officials say help for Iowa motorists will be available for more hours and at more places along the state’s highways.
The Iowa Transportation Department announced Wednesday that it is expanding Highway Helper to the Davenport area and is increasing hours of the free service in Cedar Rapids, Council Bluffs, Des Moines and Iowa City.
Highway Helper workers aid stranded drivers in replacing flat tires, jump-starting vehicles and obtaining fuel for empty tanks. The workers will transport stranded drivers to safe locations to make arrangements if extensive repairs are needed.
Highway Helper vehicles patrol high-traffic roadways looking drivers who need help. The department also uses traffic cameras to spot stranded drivers.
The department said in a news release that if people are stranded and need assistance, “the safest thing to do is call 911.”



Second Murder Trial Begins For Woman Charged With Killing Boyfriend

MUSCATINE, Iowa (AP) – A second murder trial has begun for a southeast Iowa woman accused of the 1992 killing of her former boyfriend.
The Muscatine Journal reports the trial began Tuesday in Muscatine for 56-year-old Annette Cahill, who was charged in May 2018 with first-degree murder in the beating death of Corey Lee Wieneke.
Wieneke’s body was found in October 1992 on his bedroom floor in rural West Liberty.
The first trial ended in a mistrial in March 2019 when the jury
couldn’t reach a verdict.
Cahill, of Tipton, has pleaded not guilty.
Prosecutors allege Cahill killed Wieneke because of his involvement with another woman.
Decades after the killing, prosecutors charged Cahill in part
because a woman came forward to investigators to say that as a 9-year-old, she overheard Cahill confess to the killing.