Woman Found Dead In Lake Park Identified
(Lake Park, IA) — The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation has identified the woman found dead last week in Lake Park as 25-year-old Angel Bastman. Investigators have said her death is suspicious and it’s being treated as a homicide. A 23-year-old suspect is in custody. Authorities say Bastman had rented a vehicle and it was missed after her body was found December 22nd. The vehicle was spotted four days later in Sioux City and the suspect wrecked it while fleeing from police.
1475 New COVID Cases in Iowa, 67 Additional Deaths
(Des Moines, IA) – – The Iowa Department of Public Health is reporting one-thousand-475 positive COVID tests, increasing the state’s total to 276-thousand-948 cases. Sixty-seven more Iowans have died of coronavirus complications which brings the death toll to and three-thousand-812. There are currently 620 people hospitalized with COVID in Iowa. One-hundred-17 of those patients are in intensive care and 67 are on ventilators. Twenty-nine counties have a 14-day average positivity rate of at least 15 percent. There are virus outbreaks in 114 long-term care facilities.
Senate Republican Leader Whitver Proposing Tax Changes For Iowa Casinos
(Des Moines, IA) — The top Republican in the Iowa Senate says the 2021 Iowa legislature may debate tax changes for the 19 state-licensed casinos. It’s not a sure bet , but Senate Majority Leader Jack Whitver of Ankeny says legislators have begun discussing options. Whitver says the industry has been “hurt severely” through the pandemic and “we want to make sure that those jobs are saved, that industry is still strong.” Casinos were among the businesses Governor Reynolds ordered to close on March 17th and they were allowed to re-open June 1st. The state-licensed casinos paid more than 230 million in taxes to the state in the last fiscal year.
2021 Winter Dance Party in Clear Lake Canceled
(Clear Lake, IA) — COVID-19 is blamed for the cancellation of the 2021 Winter Dance Party in Clear Lake. Surf Ballroom president Jeff Nicholas says the annual event is canceled for the safety of our patrons, volunteers and staff. Nicholas said it a was very difficult decision and “rest assured, we will celebrate these men and their music again.” The Winter Dance Party is a tribute to Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and the Big Bopper. The three rock stars died in a plane crash near Clear Lake on February 3rd, 1959.
Iowa Association Of Realtors President Says Home Sales Slow Down Has Changed
(Des Moines, IA) — The president of the Iowa Association of Realtors says the slowdown in November and December home sales has changed. Jen Burkamper says January through March has been very strong in recent years. She says there are some key signs that look promising for 2021. Interest rates are going to stay low for the next two years and that should create a very strong market. Burkamper says the use of online showings has helped sellers during the coronavirus pandemic. It’s also helped buyers shop around and find the property they were looking for.
Iowa State Penitentiary Staffer Assaulted
(Fort Madison, IA) — The Iowa Department of Corrections reports a staff member at its Fort Madison facility was assaulted by an inmate Monday. The inmate was in the prison clinic for a routine medical appointment at the time. Investigators say the inmate began to attack a physician just as he entered the exam room. A staff member heard the noise and came in to restrain the inmate. That worker was taken to an area hospital for treatment and has been released. The inmate wasn’t injured and was returned to the Iowa State Penitentiary.
Waterloo Man Appeals Life Sentence For Rape Conviction
(Dubuque, IA) — A Waterloo man is appealing the life sentence he received for a rape conviction. Forty-seven-year-old Patrick Booker received an enhanced sentence last month because he had been convicted of sex abuse in a previous case. In the most recent case, he was found guilty of date rape for an incident in 2018 in Dubuque. The court was told that the victim originally planned to have sex with Booker and another man, but when she refused, Booker physically assaulted her multiple times or a period of several hours. When she fled to her bedroom, she said Booker followed her in and raped her.