Monday News, November 11
Report Of Stolen Vehicle Results In Three Arrested
(Akron) -- Late Saturday afternoon, Plymouth County law enforcement was advised of a stolen
vehicle from Hawarden. At about 6:00 p.m. an Akron Police officer located the vehicle parked near the intersection of 3rd and Sargent Street in Akron. At that time there was a white male subject in the driver's seat of the vehicle. The Akron officer requested assistance and the Plymouth County Sheriff's office and Iowa State Patrol responded.
Through the investigation, it was determined that the person that had stolen the car was
located in the residence at 301 Sargent Street. Plymouth County deputies and the Akron
police officer located the suspect in the basement of the residence. He was found to be in possession of marijuana, methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia. Officers also located two children under the age of 12 in the residence and an adult female. As a result of the investigation the Sheriff's office arrested 20 year old Colt Johns of Hawarden with possession of stolen property, a class D felony; possession of marijuana, third offense, a class D felony; possession of methamphetamine, third offense, class D felony; child endangerment, aggravated misdemeanor, and possession of drug paraphernalia, a simple misdemeanor. Johns is being held on a $5000 bond. Also arrested was 24 year old Travis Kidd of Akron. He was charged with possession of stolen property, a class D felony; child endangerment, aggravated misdemeanor; possession of drug paraphernalia, a simple misdemeanor. Kidd is also being held on a $5000 bond. The third person arrested was 19 year old Lauren Goss of Le Mars. She has been charged with child endangerment, which is an aggravated misdemeanor. The parents of the two children were not home at the time, and Kidd and Goss were supposed to be caring for them.
Sioux City Police Release Identities Of Homicide Victims
(Sioux City) -- Sioux City police have released the identities of those shooting victims involved from the Thursday evening homicide. The two deceased are 35 year old Yolanda Valdez of Orange City, and 33 year old Michael Delgado of Sioux City. The third victim that was taken to surgery and is expected to survive is Luis Sanchez, age 33, of Sioux City.
Jaimes-Martinez Pleads Guilty To Firearm Charges But Not To Murder Charges
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa man is maintaining his innocence in a fatal shooting, but he has pleaded guilty to a gun charge.
Authorities say 35-year-old Fernando Jaimes-Martinez pleaded guilty Friday to being a
felon in possession of a firearm because he has two Nebraska felony convictions on his
record. Jaimes-Martinez faces three to 15 years in prison and deportation for that.
Jaimes-Martinez is scheduled to go to trial this week on a first-degree murder charge. He is accused of firing a gun into a crowd on September 22nd, 2012 and killing 27-year-old Karla Gonzalez.
Earlier, Jaimes-Martinez refused to plead guilty to the killing as part of a plea agreement.
The murder trial is scheduled to begin on Tuesday. If convicted, Jaimes-Martinez would face a sentence of life in prison.
Gehlen To Host Veteran's Day Program
(Le Mars) -- Today is Veteran's Day and several area schools and businesses plan to honor veterans. At the Le Mars Hy-Vee supermarket, veterans will be allowed to eat a free breakfast. The Blue Bunny Ice Cream Parlor is offering free ice cream cones to all veterans.
Gehlen Catholic school will hold a special prayer service assembly for all area veterans,
and is open to the public. Lisa Niebuhr explains the program will start at 8:45 a.m. at the
Steven Shea gym, and the program will honor those veterans of the past, the present, and
Niebuhr encourages people to also view the "Wall of Honor" that showcases veterans and present military personnel with connections to Gehlen, and/or to the town of Le Mars.
The Gehlen official says this year's program will also offer the public an education as to how act properly when we view the American flag.
Again, that Gehlen Veteran's program is open to the general public. All area veterans are encouraged to attend and it will start at 8:45 Monday morning.
Tobacco Tax Revenue Is Down
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A state report says Iowa's tobacco tax revenue has dropped more than 9 percent since 2008.
Iowa Department of Public Health spokeswoman Polly Carver-Kimm says that she hopes the revenue is down because fewer people are smoking.
About 16 percent of adult Iowans were smokers in 2010, the most recent year for which trend data are available. The figure was about 20 percent in 2007, the same year state cigarette taxes were raised $1 a pack.
State fiscal analyst Shawn Snyder cited two key factors influencing Iowa tobacco tax revenue: Iowa's ban on smoking in most public places, which took effect in July 2008, and the federal government's 2009 cigarette tax increase of 62 cents a pack.
Officials Concern About Student Truancy
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Iowa schools work to limit truancy because it helps improve results, but some question whether more could be done to reduce chronic absences.
A group of Iowa United Way chapters plans to ask state lawmakers to require school districts to track chronic absences by school.
Supporters say having that information would help communities develop solutions.
Currently, the state relies on average daily attendance figures, which can mask chronic absences.
Frequent absenteeism isn't unusual in Iowa. Nearly one in five high school students in Des Moines missed at least 18 days last year. That's equal to 10 percent of the school year.
The problem is most prevalent at high-poverty schools. Besides Des Moines, high rates of absenteeism were also recorded in Waterloo and Council Bluffs.
Washington DC Needs To Follow Iowa's Example Of Compromise
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - While the recent federal government shutdown was the perfect example of split-party gridlock in Washington, in other parts of the country opposing parties are actually working together.
Welcome to Iowa: a state with a Republican-controlled state House, a Democratic-majority state Senate and a Republican governor. The leaders in this triangle this year came to bipartisan agreements on a massive property tax cut, increased education spending and an expansion of Medicaid under the newly enacted federal health care overhaul.
Governor Terry Branstad says that the government is "expected to work together."
Iowa's governance is an outlier in today's political landscape. At a time when half of all legislatures have veto-proof majorities, Iowa is one of just three states with a divided legislature.
State Legislator Helping With Female Health Issues
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - In the 10 years since she delivered a stillborn baby girl, state Senator Janet Petersen has been on a mission to help other mothers avoid such a tragedy.
A public health campaign she started with four other moms who suffered similar losses is now reaching women in Iowa and branching out around the country.
Called "Count the Kicks," the campaign educates women about how to monitor their babies' activity during the final stages of pregnancy so that they may notice any potentially problematic changes. Since the 2009 launch, the campaign has been adopted by more than 75 percent of Iowa OB/GYN clinic and birthing hospitals.
A new "Count the Kicks" web application was launched last month and efforts to create similar programs are underway in seven states.