Monday Afternoon News, May 13
Fire Reported At Amber Inn Motel
(Le Mars) -- A fire was reported Monday morning at about 10:09 a.m. from the Amber Inn Motel located near Business Highway 75. Le Mars Fire chief Dave Schipper says the motel cleaning staff noticed smoke coming from the ceiling of room 68. A high wattage light bulb in a recessed ceiling lighting fixture caused some extensive smoke damage to the motel. The bulb was of higher wattage than what the fixture was designed to hold, causing it to overheat and igniting the ceiling insulation. Most of the damage was confined to the ceiling insulation. Flames did not penetrate the roof. Fire officials entered the motel and pulled down ceiling panels in order to have better access to the fire. The smoke traveled through the attic area and was noticeable in several rooms. Schipper estimates the damage to be about $3000. There were no injuries from the fire, and the motel guests were able to escape without harm.
McCormick Back On Police Duty
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - Sioux City police officer Kevin McCormick is back on duty and has already visited the spot where he was wounded during a traffic stop.
McCormick retraced his route on the west side of the city on Sunday, remembering the garbage cans and chain-link fence and the van he saw on April 29. McCormick says he's been replaying the incident in his mind.
He'd pulled over a car for a seat belt violation. As he was preparing to leave his cruiser, a man got out of the car and fired eight rifle shots at the cruiser. A bullet that penetrated the cruiser's windshield struck McCormick above an eye.
Twenty-one-year-old Jamal Dean has been arrested and is being held on a charge of attempted murder.
Two Men Convicted For Child Pornography
COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) - Two Iowa men who were convicted on child pornography charges have been sentenced to federal prison.
Prosecutors say 26-year-old Edward Robertson, of Spirit lake, was given seven years. Robertson must serve 10 years of supervised release after he leaves custody.
A U.S. District Court jury in Council Bluffs found Robertson guilty of receiving child pornography over the Internet from October 2008 until March 24, 2009.
In a separate case, 59-year-old Danny Hummel, of Essex, was given six months in prison, followed by 10 years of supervised release. He'd pleaded guilty to possession of child pornography.
Branstad Names New State Auditor
(Des Moines) -- Governor Terry Branstad has named CPA Mary Mosiman, as Iowa’s new state auditor, following last month’s announcement by David Vaudt that he was resigning to become the new chairman of the Governmental Accounting Standards Board . His last day was May 3. Mosiman currently serves as deputy secretary of state under Matt Schultz. Her first day as state auditor begins today May 13.
“I had two major requirements for Iowa’s state auditor: that the individual was a CPA, and that the individual would adhere to the sound budgeting principles followed by David Vaudt,” said Branstad. “In Mary, we found that and more. She is a talented, passionate public servant who will keep a very close watch over Iowa’s tax dollars.”
Prior to serving as the deputy secretary of state, Mosiman served as the Story County Auditor and Commissioner of Elections, from 2001-2010. She is a graduate of Iowa State University with a degree in accounting.
Compensation For Mentally Handicapped Employees Greatly Reduced
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - A landmark $240 million verdict for 32 mentally disabled workers who suffered years of abuse will be reduced to about $1.6 million because of a law capping their
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission and Henry's Turkey Service agreed in legal briefs filed Friday that each plaintiff can recover $50,000 apiece, plus interest, under federal law, compared
to $7.5 million a jury awarded each May 1.
Each plaintiff will also be entitled to separate back payments averaging about $50,000. U.S. Senior Judge Charles Wolle will enter a final judgment soon.
Jurors found that Henry's Turkey Service discriminated against the men, who they hired out to work at an Iowa turkey processing plant. The men lived in a filthy bunkhouse and faced verbal and
physical abuse at home and at work.
Kayaking Couple Is Rescued
BOONE, Iowa (AP) - A kayaking couple have been rescued from the Des Moines River near Boone.
Boone County Search and Rescue and the Boone Fire Department responded to a call Sunday afternoon that a man and his wife had been pinned in their kayaks against a pile of logs.
Sheriff's Deputy Brian Pontius says the man's kayak tipped over and was sucked beneath the pile about 30 feet from shore. The man managed to pull himself out of the water and onto the logs. His
wife's kayak was jammed into the pile.
Rescuers threw lines to the couple and pulled them to safety.
The man was treated for signs of hypothermia, but he refused to be hospitalized. No injuries to his wife were reported.
Iowa City Man Robs Boy
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - A 61-year-old Iowa City man has been accused of robbing a boy who was looking for lawns to mow.
The boy was knocking on doors Sunday to inquire about doing the yard work when he met Kevin Shannon at one house. Police say Shannon gave the boy $10 and told the boy he was an undercover
Police say Shannon later got in his vehicle and drove up to the boy, pulled out a gun and demanded the boy return his money. The boy wasn't injured.
Officers arrived soon and arrested Shannon. He faces several charges, including felony theft, driving while intoxicated, and impersonating a public official.
Johnson County Jail records say Shannon remained in custody on Monday. Online court records don't list the name of Shannon's lawyer.