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Wednesday News, December 12

Sioux City Police Looking For Missing Woman

(Sioux City) -- Sioux City Police is asking the public's assistance in locating a female who is reported as missing.  24 year old Jasmine Kleve, a white female from Sioux City is described as five foot - 120 pound woman with brown hair.  She was last seen wearing a tan waist length coat, black pants and carrying a pink backpack.  She was last seen in the general area of the Southern Hills Mall on December 5, 2012.  Police don't expect foul play is suspected in her disappearance, but her welfare is in question.


Sioux County Investigates Burglaries

(Orange City) -- Sioux County authorities are investigating an attempted burglary that occurred sometime between Friday, December 7th and Monday, December 10th.  The attempted burglary was at the Maurice Tire and Repair.  Anyone with information concerning this crime is asked to contact the Sioux County Sheriff's Office.  Sioux County officials are also investigating the burglary of the Kelly's Drive-In and Pizza at Hospers.  An undetermined amount of cash was stolen during that burglary that took place sometime between Friday evening and Saturday morning.

 

Businesses Invited To Discuss Downtown Renovation

(Le Mars) -- Last evening,(Tuesday) Le Mars downtown business owners were invited to attend a public meeting regarding the possibility of applying for a $500,000 grant that would allow the community to make major facade improvements in a designated downtown area.  The facade improvement program is a comprehensive rehabilitation and preservation plan that would improve many downtown buildings at once.  The instrument that makes this building enhancement project possible is a community development block grant.  Business owners were told the advantages of this type of facade program are that it allows for a single source of project management, a single source of design, and a single source for construction.  The project would be streamlined and removes the burden of facade enhancement from each individual property owner.  All facade enhancements are coordinated with the historic architectural heritage of the building.  If the grant is approved, 50 percent of the cost would be covered by the Community Development Block Grant, 25 percent would be covered by
the city, and 25 percent of the expense would be covered by the building's owner.  That
meeting was held at the Le Mars city council chambers.

 

Jury Undecided On Wrongful Convictions If Compensation Is Needed

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A jury in Des Moines is still trying to decide whether two Omaha, Neb., men should be paid millions of dollars for spending 25 years in prison on murder convictions later
overturned.
Jurors began deliberating Friday afternoon after 21 days in the courtroom. They spent eight hours Monday and six hours Tuesday working on the case.
They must decide whether Terry Harrington and Curtis McGhee should be paid by the city of Council Bluffs and two retired police officers who worked to convict them in 1978.
Harrington seeks more than $60 million and McGhee about $50 million. They claim former detectives Dan Larsen and Lyle Brown coerced witnesses into lying and hid evidence from their defense
attorneys.
The Iowa Supreme Court overturned their life sentences and released them in 2003.


Cedar Rapids Man Found Guilty of Lying To Federal Investigator

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - A jury has found a Cedar Rapids man guilty of lying to a federal investigator about his role in a car chase stemming from a student loan fraud scheme.
Jurors found 64-year-old Raymond Cortez guilty Tuesday of making a false statement to a U.S. Postal Inspector during a November 2007 interview.
Cortez was asked during the interview whether he was the driver of a black Hummer involved in a chase the prior month with a young man.
Prosecutors say passengers in the Hummer were chasing the man to retrieve a $3,300 federal student loan check, which they had fraudulently obtained. They say Cortez denied he was the driver,
but evidence at trial proved otherwise.
Sentencing has not been set for Cortez, who faces up to five years in prison.

 

Ankeny Man Found Guilty of Killing Infant Daughter

ANKENY, Iowa (AP) - An Ankeny man has been sentenced to life in prison for killing his infant daughter in 2010.
Ryan Trowbridge was sentenced Tuesday in Polk County.
He was convicted in October after a bench trial of first-degree murder and child endangerment causing death.
Prosecutors say injuries on 4-month-old daughter Rylee were consistent with being grabbed and shaken. Trowbridge told authorities he put his daughter on a bed for a nap and then discovered her trapped between the headboard and mattress.
Trowbridge's attorney says his client will appeal his conviction.
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Attorney Wants Police Interview Left Out Of Trial

MANCHESTER, Iowa (AP) - An attorney for a man facing charges in a double homicide in Manchester wants part of a police interview kept out of his client's upcoming trial.
An attorney for Brandon Ahlers argued at a hearing Tuesday that police expressed or implied leniency during an interview in return for Ahlers' statements. A judge will make a ruling on the request at a later date.
Ahlers is charged with aiding and abetting in the killings of Richard and Janet Sweet in May 2011. Prosecutors say he suggested to his friend, Isaiah Sweet, on different ways to kill the couple.
Sweet is charged with two counts of first-degree murder in the shooting deaths of his grandparents.
Both have pleaded not guilty. Their trials are scheduled to begin in March.
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Bulldozer Accident Victim Now Identified

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) - Authorities have identified a construction worker in Davenport who was killed after becoming trapped underneath a bulldozer.
Thomas McLachlan was operating the machinery Tuesday morning when an embankment he was grading gave way and the equipment tipped over.
Hawkeye Paving posted on its website that McLachlan has been the company's lead operator since 1987.
The accident briefly closed traffic near the construction site, which is scheduled to be a hotel and retail complex.
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Scarville City Clerk Looks At Jail Time

FOREST CITY, Iowa (AP) - A former city clerk in Scarville has been given jail time for tampering with city records.
Jolene Carter was sentenced Tuesday in Winnebago County District Court to 30 days in jail. She also must pay about $20,000 in restitution to the city.
Prosecutors say Carter issued paychecks to herself totaling nearly $8,000. A report by the state auditor caught the misuse, including by Scarville Mayor Michelle Hermanson.
Hermanson pleaded guilty to theft and other charges in November. She will be sentenced in January.
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Tuesday Afternoon News, December 11

Sioux City Police Searching For Missing Woman

(Sioux City) -- Sioux City Police is asking the public's assistance in locating a female who is reported as missing.  24 year old Jasmine Kleve, a white female from Sioux City is described as five foot - 120 pound woman with brown hair.  She was last seen wearing a tan waist length coat, black pants and carrying a pink backpack.  She was last seen in the general area of the Southern Hills Mall on December 5, 2012.  Police don't expect foul play is suspected in her disappearance, but her welfare is in question.

Cow on Roadway Causes Auto Accident

(Remsen) -- Plymouth County sheriff's deputies are investigating an auto accident that was the result of cattle being on the road.  Jacob Pierce, 18, of Remsen was driving on County road L-14 on Saturday evening.  The road was 100 percent ice covered when Pierce saw a cow on the road and several others in the ditch.  Pierce swerved to miss the cow, but lost control of his vehicle.  The vehicle rolled a couple of times and ended in the ditch on the car's top.  Pierce was able to extricate himself and a passenger.  He suffered injuries and was transported to Floyd Valley Hospital by the Remsen ambulance.  A 17 year old female from Le Mars was a passenger in the car and also suffered some injuries and was transported to Floyd Valley Hospital by the Remsen ambulance.


Deputies Make Drug Arrests

(Hinton) -- On Sunday, the Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office received a call of a suspicious vehicle in the area of K42 and 310th St. southeast of Hinton.  Upon arrival, Plymouth County deputies found that the vehicle had a flat tire and was disabled.  The passenger, Tony Allen Soule, age 29 of Sioux City, was arrested for a Woodbury County warrant.  He was also in possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.  Soule was jailed at the Plymouth County Jail and charged with possession of a controlled substance 3rd or subsequent offense (Class D Felony) and possession of drug paraphernalia (simple misdemeanor).  His bond was set at $5,000. 

School Board Presented Financial Comparisons of Schools

(Le Mars) -- During last evening's Le Mars Community School Board meeting, School Superintendent, Dr. Todd Wendt reviewed the financial comparison of the Le Mars Community School District with the other school districts within the Lakes Conference and of Plymouth County.  Wendt says Le Mars Community compares well with other schools.  Le Mars school district has a total tax rate of $13.19 which is the third lowest in the conference.  Only Spirit Lake at $9.51 and Emmetsburg at $12.82 have a lower tax rate. But Wendt says you also need to compare other numbers.
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Comparing instructional Support Levy per student, Le Mars has a rate of $224 per pupil, which is  second lowest in the conference behind Storm Lake's $147 per student rate.  Le Mars Community has a per student net value of $280,748 which falls in the middle of the conference with three other school districts with a higher amount and three schools with a lower amount.  When compared to other Plymouth County school districts, Le Mars Community has the lowest instructional support levy rate at $224 per student, while others are all above the $400 level.  Le Mars Community also has a low total tax rate compared to other Plymouth County school districts.  Only Remsen-Union has a lower tax rate than Le Mars with a tax rate of $11.68.  The state average for the tax rate is $14.49 and the valuation per pupil state average is $286,169. Wendt says the goal of the local school board is to save the property owner some money.
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Plymouth County Wants To Get Healthy

(Le Mars) -- When you see that Iowa has 29 percent of its population as being listed as obese, compared to the national average of 27.9 percent.  One in four Iowa adults are physically inactive, one in 12 people in Iowa suffer from diabetes, and slightly more than 20 percent of the state's population smokes cigarettes, it is easy to see why Iowa's Healthiest state ranking dropped four positions to number 20.  Because of these startling statistics, organizers within Plymouth County are wanting to recruit at least 2300 people to team up, get active, eat well and live healthy with the Live Healthy Iowa ten-week Wellness Challenge.  Plymouth County Extension Coordinator Carol Schneider says Plymouth County ranks low within the state as far as being healthy.  She says the program, Live Healthy Iowa, has been around for ten years. 
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Schneider says the 2300 participant goal represents ten percent of the Plymouth County population.

Schneider says there is an entry fee of $20 for the ten-week healthy wellness challenge with a five dollar coupon, making the cost of the program an affordable $15.  Schneider says the program will begin in late January, but she encourages people to sign up early.
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An informational meeting is scheduled for Monday, December 17 from 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m. at the Floyd Valley Hospital Conference rooms.  A complimentary lunch will be provided.  Floyd Valley Hospital, Le Mars YMCA, and the Plymouth County Extension and Outreach are sponsoring the local wellness challenge.  Interested participants can enroll at either the Le Mars YMCA or at the Plymouth County Extension.


Emerald Ash Borer Found in Iowa

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Destructive insects known for killing ash trees have been found in northeast Iowa.
The state Department of Natural Resources says insect larvae consistent with the emerald ash borer have been found in two trees in Allamakee (AL'-uh-muh-KEE') County. The larvae were collected in late October.
The county has been under quarantine since 2010 when the insect was discovered along the Mississippi River.
Officials say the discoveries are the furthest west the invasive pests have been spotted. It also is the first time emerald ash borer has been found in a sentinel tree in the state. More than 400 of those trees are being checked as part of a surveillance effort.
Nearly 1,200 insect traps were placed this summer, mostly in eastern Iowa.

   

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