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Griswold woman sentenced to 15-years in prison


May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A Cass County woman was sentenced today (Wednesday) to 15-years in prison an methamphetamine-related charges. The U-S Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa says 46-year old Katrina Sue Bates, of Griswold,  was sentenced to 180 months imprisonment for conspiring to distribute methamphetamine in and around Cass County. United States District Judge John Jarvey also ordered Bates to serve a ten-year term of supervised release following incarceration.

Bates pleaded guilty to Conspiracy to Distribute a Controlled Substance (methamphetamine) on September 30, 2012. The conviction was the result of a three year investigation into methamphetamine trafficking in and around Atlantic, Iowa. At the time of her guilty plea, Bates admitted that from July of 2009, until May of 2010, she agreed to distribute methamphetamine obtained from a South Omaha, Nebraska source to customers in the Atlantic area.

The investigation into her activities was conducted by the Cass County, Iowa, Sheriff’s Office, Audubon County, Iowa, Sheriff’s Office, Cass County, Iowa, County Attorney’s Office, and the Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement. The case was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa.

Harrison County man sentenced on firearm and explosives charges


May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

U-S Attorney Nicholas Klinefeldt reports a Harrison County man was sentenced today (Wednesday), to more than seven and a-half years in prison. 31-year old Rodney Lee Crosby, of rural Pisgah, was sentenced in United States District Court in Council Bluffs on charges of felon in possession of a firearm and felon in possession of explosive devices. United States District Court Judge John A. Jarvey sentenced Crosby to 46 months in prison on each charge, to be followed by 3 years of supervised release on each charge, with the imprisonment and supervised release on both charges to be served concurrently. Crosby was also ordered to pay a $10,000.

The Court also ordered Crosby to forfeit: eight weapons (Including: a Remington Arms, Model 870, 12 gauge shotgun; a Mossberg, Model 835 Ulti-Mag, 12 gauge shotgun; a savage, Model 116, 338 caliber rifle; a Remington Arms, Model 710, 30-06 caliber rifle; a Marlin Firearms, Model 39A, .22 caliber rifle; a Savage, Model 11, 243 caliber rifle; a Hipoint, Model 995, 9mm rifle; a Taurus .357 caliber revolver), and five different types of ammunition (.9-mm, .357 caliber, 30-06 caliber, .25 caliber, .22 caliber), 12- and 16-gauge  shotgun shells, all “improvised explosive bombs”, such as containers include “snuff cans” with metal lids, containing a per chlorate explosive mixture, and with functional pyrotechnic fuses, including among any others those seized from Crosby’s premises on July 2, 2011; and explosives in the form of commercial aerial display fireworks, including among others, cardboard tubing with plastic end plugs seized from Crosby’s premises on July 2, 2011.

Crosby was also ordered to pay a $200.00 special assessment for the Crime Victim Fund. He was taken into custody by the United States Marshal’s Service to be detained pending designation of the Federal Bureau of Prisons facility at which he will serve his sentence. Crosby was sentenced upon his pleas of guilty to the two charges entered on September 6, 2012. The firearm and explosives charges against Crosby arose from a July 2, 2011, domestic disturbance call to Crosby’s residence. During the call, Harrison County Sheriff’s Deputies and Iowa State Patrolmen observed several firearms and ammunition in the residence. In a subsequent search of the premises, officers found additional firearms, ammunition, explosive devices and commercial aerial display fireworks. Crosby was prohibited from possessing those items, having previously been convicted of felony fraud and theft charges.

During the search, the State of Iowa Fire Marshal and the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, Tobacco and Explosives were called, and joined the investigation. During the investigation, Crosby gave a statement regarding the fireworks manufacturing operation in which he stated that he made and sold fireworks, and that he made substantial money from the sale of the fireworks. Some of the explosives were deemed potentially dangerous, and were promptly destroyed by law enforcement personnel on the premises in which they were found.

The investigation was conducted by the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department, the Iowa State Patrol, the State of Iowa Fire Marshal, and the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the case was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa.

More than $700,000 in Grants Awarded to Iowa Communities


May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Vision Iowa Board today (Wednesday), awarded $739,862 in grants to an historic railroad district in Sioux City, a park pavilion in Moville and the John Wayne Birthplace Museum in Winterset. The grants were approved today by the Vision Iowa Board at their meeting in Des Moines.

The Milwaukee Railroad Shops Historic District in Sioux City was award a Community Attraction and Tourism (CAT) Grant amounting to $314,862. The award is contingent upon completion of fundraising within 30 days. The total project cost of more than $2.6-million includes the exterior renovation of five historic buildings, the construction of a permanent restroom facility and an alternative transportation system of interpretive walking trails, parking lot and a miniature railroad. Additionally, the project will also support interior improvements to the roundhouse building and continue interior improvements to the machine shop building.

The John Wayne Birthplace Museum in Winterset received a $400,000 CAT grant for a project expected to cost over $1.38-million. The grant funds are contingent upon completion of fundraising within 60-days. The project includes the construction of the John Wayne Birthplace Museum, an interactive museum and learning center honoring the life and work of John Wayne. The facility will include a welcome center, theater, extensive exhibit space and gift shop.

The Vision Iowa Program provides financial incentives to communities for the construction of recreational, cultural, educational or entertainment facilities that enhance the quality of life in Iowa. Currently, 373 CAT awards have been granted by the board, amounting to nearly $139.6-million.

Three more names to line the Iowa Peace Officer Memorial, including former Stuart Police Chief


May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

This Friday, the State of Iowa will honor three officers who died in the line of duty: Stuart Police Department Chief Robert Smith, Motor Vehicle Enforcement Officer Philip J. Adams, and Floyd County Deputy Levi Bowers. Each of the men died as a result of their efforts to secure Iowa communities.

Stuart Chief of Police Robert Smith was called to a disturbance at an establishment in Stuart, Iowa on September 20, 2009. As a result of this call, Chief Smith executed an arrest on a subject who physically resisted orders. In an attempt to escape, the suspect pushed Chief Smith to the ground at which time he struck his neck and knee on the pavement. The injuries to his neck required surgical intervention. Complications arose during the surgery, and Chief Smith was left paralyzed. He died from complications of the paralysis on August 13, 2010.

Chief Smith served the community of Stuart as the Police Chief since 2006. Prior to that, he served on the Ackley Police Department from 1994 to 2006 as Sergeant and Assistant Police Chief. Additionally, he served 23 years in the Army and Army Reserves. He is survived by a wife, six children and one step-child.

The event honoring Smith and the other two men will take place beginning 10-a.m. Friday, at the Peace Officer Memorial found at Oran Pape State Office Building in Des Moines (215 E. 7th St.). In the event of rain, the event will be held in the rotunda at the State Capital. On-hand for the ceremony will be Governor Terry Branstad, Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds, Commissioner Brian London, and officers from Local, County, and State Law Enforcement Agencies

Red Oak Man Arrested for Harrassment


May 8th, 2013 by admin

The Red Oak Police Department reported the arrest today of 39-year old Geoffrey Allan Maurer of Red Oak. Maurer was arrested on North Highland Avenue and charged with Harassment/3rd Degree. His bond was set at $300.

Judge narrows scope of wrongful conviction case


May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A federal judge has significantly narrowed the scope of a lawsuit filed by two black men seeking millions of dollars from Council Bluffs and two police officers after being wrongly convicted for the 1977 murder of a retired white police officer. Terry Harrington and Curtis McGhee, of Omaha, Neb., were released from prison in 2003 after the Iowa Supreme Court found prosecutors committed misconduct.

Their lawsuit filed in 2005 claims two police officers violated their constitutional rights. A Nov. 1 trial ended in mistrial in December when three jurors said they disagreed with the verdict. Judge Robert Pratt, an April 30 ruling, has thrown out all the allegations except for one. He says a jury at a second trial may consider whether the officers deliberately manufactured or coerced false evidence.

EPA grants fund former industrial site cleanup


May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Five cities in Iowa and one in Nebraska have received federal grants to help clean up contaminated former industrial sites. The Environmental Protection Agency awards the money for environmental assessments, planning, and cleanup projects. In Iowa the cities of Dubuque, Fort Dodge and Ottumwa each received $400,000 to assess sites in need of cleanup. Council Bluffs received $200,000 and Coralville $382,000.

The EPA says grants target under-served and economically disadvantaged neighborhoods where environmental cleanups and new jobs are most needed. The EPA awarded grants to 240 projects in 45 states this year.

Sioux City path could finally connect to somewhere

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) – A recreational trail to nowhere could finally be connected to somewhere.  The Sioux City Journal reports that for four years, the three-mile Floyd River Trail hasn’t had a north trailhead. It ends abruptly, and the only way to reach it from the north is to walk through a muddy area, up a slope, across a railway bed, then down an embankment.

Because it doesn’t connect to another path, avid bicyclist Garrett Soldati, of Sioux City, says few people use the path.  That could change under a plan being studied by the Siouxland Interstate Metropolitan Planning Council to build a trail from Le Mars along state Highway 75 to Sioux City. It would connect to the Floyd River Trail.

Rural Oakland man sentenced on firearm charges


May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The U-S Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa reports 38-year old Shannon James Keiffer-Rose, of rural Oakland, was sentenced Tuesday in United States District Court in Council Bluffs, on a Felon in possession of a firearm charge.  United States District Court Judge John A. Jarvey sentenced Keiffer-Rose to 12-months and one day in prison, to be followed by two years of supervised release. The Court also ordered Keiffer-Rose to forfeit whatever interest he has in a rifle, a shotgun, a .45 caliber pistol and ammunition found in his possession, and to pay a $100.00 special assessment for the Crime Victim Fund.

Keiffer-Rose was allowed to remain under supervision by the United States Probation Office pending designation of the Federal Bureau of Prisons facility at which he will serve his sentence.

Keiffer-Rose was sentenced following his plea of guilty on December 5tg, 2012, to being a felon in possession of a firearm. The firearm charge against Keiffer-Rose arose from a June 8, 2012, vehicle fire at his residence, during which responders discovered a marijuana grow, marijuana use paraphernalia, a.22 caliber rifle, a 12 gauge shotgun, a loaded .45 caliber handgun, and over 2,000 rounds of ammunition.

The investigation was conducted by the SouthWest Iowa Narcotics Task Force and the
Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Iowa.

“Roar into Harlan” returns next week


May 8th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The City of Harlan will see the return of “Roar into Harlan” events beginning next week.  During the Harlan City Council meeting on Tuesday, Mike Wohlhutter, Coordinator for the Roar events, told the council things will change a little bit for this year’s events. Wohlhutter said they are going to make each night a different theme. There will be a music night, lady’s night, kid’s night and a few others.

Wohlhutter also told the council this year the Hotel/Motel tax committee helped by granting $4,000 for the events for all the liability that went for to pay per event and advertising fees. The first Roar into Harlan will be held on Thursday, May 16th and will be a patriotic theme. Wohlhutter said they will ride the colors into town again, as there was  much interest in that from the Patriot riders, Legion riders and locals.

Participants will meet at Harlan Auto Mart at 5:30pm and everything will be at the square at 6pm. There will be a flag folding ceremony, a dedication to the flag (to show what the thirteen folds mean), and what everything consists of with the ceremony.

Following this month’s Roar into Harlan, the flag used in the ceremony will be donated to Jack Kenkel for use at the Freedom Rock site, in Earling.

(Joel McCall/KNOD)