Bank Robbery Suspect Now Pleads Guilty
(Le Mars) — The woman charged with assisting with a Le Mars bank robbery of December of last year has changed her plea. Karen Merrick is accused of assisting to rob the Iowa State Bank. She originally offered a plea of not guilty in federal court back in February, but now she has pleaded guilty to the charged crime. Merrick assisted the other bank robbery suspect, Phillip
White by driving a U-Haul truck as the get-away vehicle. Both suspects were arrested within minutes following the robbery. Merrick could see up to ten years in prison, and a fine of up to $125,000. A sentencing date has not yet been set. Back in June, White had pleaded guilty to robbing the Iowa State Bank.
Orange City Appoints Woudstra As City Administer
(Orange City)— The city of Orange City has tapped the former Northwestern College Athletic Director as its new city administrator. Earl Woudstra has accepted the position following the retirement of Duane Feekes, who had served as the Orange City administrator for 41 years prior to his retirement
scheduled for the end of 2019. Woudstra is a life-long Orange City resident. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree from Northwestern College, a Masters from the University of Iowa, and a Phd from the University of Minnesota.
While employed at Northwestern College, Woudstra has served on the President’s Council that has assisted in strategic planning and budget oversight of the college’s $26 million operating budget. He has assisted in the completion of many projects around campus. Woudstra has also served on the Orange City city council and as the role of Mayor Pro Tem from 1999 to
Election For 2020 Tulip Court Scheduled For Wednesday
(Orange City) — The 2020 Tulip Court Election will take place next Wednesday, September 18th between the hours of 12:00 noon and 8:00 p.m.
Voting will take place at the Stadscentrum, located on the corner of Central Avenue and Second Street North in Orange City. Eligible voters are adults
with an Orange City address, along with students from 7th gradt through 12th grade from MOC-Floyd Valley, Orange City Christian, and Unity Christian High School. Tulip Court candidates for 2020 include: Tessa Burg, daughter of
Doug and Lisa Burg; Megan Bylsma, the daughter of Lauren and Melinda Bylsma; Kassandra Diehl the daughter of Todd and Stacy Diehl; Julia Howe, the daughter of Sean and Kristyn Howe; Rachel Jorgensen the daughter of Jerry and Dawn Jorgensen; Sydney Krommendyk the daughter of Mike and Lisa Krommendyk; Madisyn Mulder the daughter of Scott and Jill Mulder; Madison Riemersma the daughter of Sherrie Vande Weerde and Cory Riemersma; Delia Rodriguez the daughter of Ines Castro and Jose Rodriguez; Sophie Swart the daughter of John and Mary Swart; Julianna Van Grouw the daughter of Jerry
and Melanie Van Grouw; BreElle Van Zee the daughter of Tim and Sara Van Zee; Kayla Vande Zande the daughter of Reverend Mark and Kim Vande Zande; and Aubyn Zwart the daughter of Brad and Shawn Zwart. The 2020 Tulip Court will be announced at 10:00 a.m. on Thursday, September 19th.
Three Tornadoes Rated EF2 Hit Sioux Falls
(Sioux Falls) — The National Weather Service now says three tornadoes struck Sioux Falls late Tuesday night.
National Weather Service lead meteorologist Todd Heitkamp in Sioux Falls tweets that he has determined three separate tornadoes struck South Dakota’s largest city late Tuesday.
All three tornadoes were rated EF-2. Two had winds of about 125 mph while the third had winds of 130 mph.
The twister with the fastest winds struck the Avera Health Complex on the south side of Sioux Falls. A hospital spokesman says seven patients and one person outside the hospital suffered minor injuries.
Wise I Brewery To Be The State’s 100th Craft Brewer
(Le Mars) — Iowa’s latest craft brewery, located in Le Mars, is about to open with the distinction of being the 100th craft brewery in Iowa. Wise I will celebrate the honor of being Iowa’s 100th home brewer with a grand opening ceremony scheduled for Friday evening at 7:00 p.m. with members of the Iowa Brewery Guild. Owners Ben Sitzmann and Matt Lancaster
say it was just “dumb luck” to be the 100th state craft brewery. Sitzmann says it speaks well of the Iowa craft brewery industry as to the leaps and bounds the industry has grown within the last few years.
Lancaster says the state-wide publicity is welcomed, especially when they had hoped to open their craft brewery months ago.
As for the name, “Wise I” (eye), Sitzmann says its their way of making fun of a famous woman prohibitionist from Iowa.
The brew crew plan to offer eleven different ales and lagers, with seasonal beers throughout the year. Sitzmann says depending on the type… a flavor of beer can be brewed, aged, with the finished product placed in a keg ready
to be tapped anywhere between nine days to two months. Lancaster says the dual got interested in starting a craft brewery because they both enjoy creating different beers. Lancaster tells of Friday’s celebration which will start with a food truck outside the premises.
Wise I (eye) will be open Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday between 3:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. Friday hours will be from 3:00 p.m. until 10:00 p.m. and Saturday from 11:00 a.m. until 11:00 p.m. Sitzmann says they not only want to serve great tasting craft beers, but to educate people about craft beers,
and the industry.
Sioux City Man Found Guilty Of Fatally Stabbing Roommate
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) – A man accused of fatally stabbing his roommate in Sioux City has been convicted.
Woodbury County District Court records show 39-year-old Elmi Said was found guilty Wednesday of a lesser charge: voluntary manslaughter. He’s also known as Abdiqadar Sharif. Sentencing is scheduled for Nov. 1.
He’d been charged with second-degree murder for the Oct. 28 slaying of 40-year-old Guled Nur.
Prosecutors say Said stabbed and kicked Nur after an altercation broke out at their apartment.
Court Denies Attorney’s Lawsuit Against Governor Reynolds For Use Of Airplane
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – An Iowa appeals court has rejected a Des Moines attorney’s challenge to Gov. Kim Reynold’s use of a businessman’s private airplane, upholding previous rulings that Reynold’s use of the flights did no real harm and were allowed by Iowa law.
The Iowa Court of Appeals said in a ruling filed Wednesday that a state court judge was right to dismiss the lawsuit filed by attorney Gary Dickey.
Dickey, a Democrat, filed a complaint last year with the Iowa Ethics and Campaign Disclosure Board, alleging Reynolds, a Republican, underestimated the value of the flight she and her family took to the Liberty Bowl in Tennessee in December 2017.
The jet was owned by Reynolds’s campaign contributor David North, CEO of a company that has a contract with the state .
The board dismissed Dickey’s complaint, ruling the flights were
allowable under Iowa’s gift law. Dickey appealed and a judge agreed with the dismissal.
The appeals court says Dickey failed to show he suffered perceptible harm required by Iowa law to justify a court overturning the board’s decision.
Dickey says he will ask the Iowa Supreme Court to review the decision.
An Error In Tax Valuation Means School District To Lose $900,000
BONDURANT, Iowa (AP) – A small Iowa school district won’t be getting nearly $900,000 it wanted to spend as part of this year’s budget, because officials have learned the budget revenue was in part based on an erroneous tax valuation from the county assessor’s office.
The Des Moines Register reports that the Polk County assessor’s
office had included in the tax base figures for the Bondurant-Farrar school district a fourth building at Facebook’s giant data center in Altoona. But the $52.4 million building was exempted from taxation for 20 years as part of a development agreement the social media giant signed with the city and the Iowa Economic Development Authority. Exemptions also were granted for the center’s first three buildings.
Facebook spokeswoman Melanie Roe says the company learned about the error just a few days ago.
The district won’t get the erroneous windfall, because the county
has corrected the tax base figures.