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Structure fire under investigation in Fremont County

News

November 3rd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

State and local officials are investigating a structure fire that occurred this (Saturday) morning near Sidney, in Fremont County. The Sheriff’s Department says they received a call about the fire at 3061 170th Street, just before 2-a.m.  No one was in the home at the time. Firefighters from Sidney Fire and Rescue, were assisted in battling the blaze, by crews from Randolph, Tabor and Riverton. The home sustained extensive fire and smoke damage. No injuries were reported. Firefighters were on the scene for about 90-minutes. The fire is under investigation by the State Fire Marshall’s Office, with assistance from the Fremont County Sheriff’s Office.

(9-a.m. News)

(Podcast) 7-a.m. Local/State News: Sat., Nov 3rd 2012

News, Podcasts

November 3rd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Area and state news (podcast) from KJAN News Director, Ric Hanson….

Adoption events & vigils are planned in several Iowa cities this month

News

November 3rd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Events across Iowa this month aim to raise awareness about the thousands of Iowa kids in foster care and the hundreds who are eligible for adoption. Corinne Sills is a post-adoption support specialist in Mason City, part of Iowa Kids Net. Sills says more than 400-thousand children are in foster care nationwide due to abuse, neglect, abandonment and other family issues. “There are approximately 6,100 Iowa children in foster care and that includes those that are in foster homes, relative homes, group care institutions and pre-adoptive homes,” Sills says.

Also, some 750 children in Iowa are legally eligible for adoption. As part of National Adoption Month, she says there will be candlelight vigils held at a locations across Iowa. “It’s to raise awareness of the 104,000 children in the United States waiting to be adopted,” Sills says. “There’s about a dozen locations around the state to bring that awareness about. It represents a bright future and bright possibilities for every child who has a permanent connection to a caring adult.”

The candlelight vigils will be held in: Ames and Davenport on November 9th, Cedar Rapids on November 13th, Council Bluffs on November 8th, Creston and Des Moines on November 6th, Webster City on November 7th, Pella on November 10th, Sioux City on November 5th, Urbandale on November 20th, and Winterset on November 8th. Sills says one of this month’s moving ceremonies is the “Adoption Saturday,” which is set for November 17th, with events in several communities, including Webster City. At those events, judges sign off on multiple adoptions over several hours with photos taken with the new families, gifts for the adopted children and other special elements — she calls it “really an exciting day.”

Similar Adoption Saturday events will be held in Des Moines, Council Bluffs, Sioux City and Ottumwa. Learn more at: www.iowakidsnet.com

(Radio Iowa)

Central Standard Time begins 2-a.m. Sunday: “Fall Back”

News

November 3rd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

WASHINGTON (AP) – It’s finally time to reclaim that hour of sleep you lost last spring.  Most of the country will turn back the clocks this weekend for the annual shift back to standard time. The majority of folks will do the switch before hitting the sack Saturday night, even though the change doesn’t become official until 2 a.m. Sunday local time.

Residents of Hawaii, most of Arizona and some U.S. territories don’t have to change since they do not observe daylight-saving time. Public safety officials say this is also a good time to put a new battery in the smoke alarm, no matter where you live.    Daylight-Saving Time (DST) returns the second Sunday in March.

Turn back the clock and check your smoke detector batteries

News

November 3rd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

You can turn back the clock one hour tonight (Saturday) before you go to bed. Fire officials are asking that you use that extra hour of time in the day to make a quick check of your smoke detectors. Cedar Rapids Fire Department spokesman, Craig Buelow (Byoo-low) says he’s seen how important the devices can be. “We have found that a working smoke alarm will reduce your risk of dying in a fire by nearly 50-percent. And unfortunately we’ve had 127 house fires in Cedar Rapids through October 31st, and in those house fires where we’ve checked to see if there’s a smoke alarm, only 26-percent of the time have we found that a working smoke alarm was present,” Buelow says.

He says his community is not alone. “The other fire departments tell me the same thing, that we have to continually put this with every media release that we send out, or every conversation that we have about a house fire or a commercial fire, just to underscore the importance of working smoke alarms,” Buelow says. It is recommended that smoke alarms that are 10 years old be replaced. Buelow says you should look at new technology when replacing a smoke alarm. “The state of Iowa now requires dual-sensor smoke alarms, so the fire departments throughout the state are advocating that people get a smoke alarm that has an ionization and photo-electric sensor in it,” Buelow says. “We are also really pushing for these smoke alarms that have a 10-year battery, or lithium power cell in them. Because again, the number one reason smoke alarms don’t work is that the batteries fail.”

Buelow says the 10-year batteries get rid of the need to replace batteries every year. “It’s especially for people who are busy and even elderly citizens so they don’t have to get up on the ladder or get some to help them replace those batteries every year,” Buelow says. He says they also recommend that you buy a carbon monoxide detector for your home, especially now that homes will be closed up and heaters turned on.

(Radio Iowa)

Numerous drug and alcohol-related arrests Friday night

News

November 3rd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office reports numerous individuals were arrested on drug and/or alcohol charges Friday night. At around 10:30-p.m., the following persons were arrested for Possession of Alcohol under the legal age: 18-year old Julie Marie Sheler, of Clarinda; 17-year old Kelsi Michelle Kling, of Villisca; and, 17-year old Edward Richard Ezekial Lockerby, of Prescott. Officials say 19-year old Katherine Joe Murren, of Villisca, was arrested for Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. The group was taken into custody following an incident which occurred in the 200 block of East 4th Street, in Villisca. Kling and Lockerby were charged and released to a guardian, while Sheler and Murren were cited and released.

About an hour earlier, 19-year old Nathan Andre Kier, of Clarinda, was arrested for Possession of Alcohol Under the Age. The arrest occurred in the 200 block of East 4th Street, in  Villisca.  And, at around 9:15-p.m. Friday, 23-year old Zachary Allan Colebank, of Villisca, was arrested in the same area, on a Possession of Drug Paraphernalia charge. Kier and Colebank were cited for the offenses, and released.

Report looks at economic impact of Iowa’s consolidated pork packing industry

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 3rd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A national consumer advocacy group released a report Friday that claims Iowa’s shift to large-scale hog production has hurt the state’s rural economy. Wenona Hauter, executive director of San Francisco-based Food and Water Watch, says consolidation in the pork packing industry has forced thousands of small-to-medium size hog producers out of the business. “Over the past three decades, the number of hogs sold in Iowa has doubled, but the value of those hogs has actually declined,” Hauter said. “The number of hog farms dropped more than 80-percent and hog prices have plunged.”

The report claims the fewer, but larger processing plants have also resulted in a decline in wages for the plants’ workers. Hauter, in a conference call with reporters, said the prevailing wisdom has been that hog production and processing has become more efficient – which provides more economic punch to hog producers and cheaper food to consumers. But, the report found otherwise.  “The Consumer Price Index for pork has risen by almost 80-percent during the period we studied, while the real hog prices and the real packing plant wages have dropped,” Hauter said. “The decline in the value of hogs and wages have had a ripple effect through the entire economy as farmers and workers have less to spend at main street businesses.”

The study analyzed county-level economic, agricultural and demographic data in five-year intervals from 1982 to 2007. “Meat packer funded studies just look at the total economic output of the consolidated hog industry, but they ignore the damage to rural economies from the decline in the number of independent farms,” Hauter said. “Medium size farms are more likely to buy farm supplies locally and are the foundation of rural economies.” Larry Ginter, a former hog farmer in Marshall County and a member of Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement, also took part in the conference call. He said the four biggest packers in Iowa slaughter nine out of 10 hogs, so “independent farmers cannot get a fair price with that kind of stranglehold on the market.”

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa early News Headlines – Sat., Nov. 3rd 2012

News

November 3rd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — Mitt Romney’s plan for victory on Tuesday boils down to this: Convince independent voters he’ll change Washington, stoke Republican enthusiasm and avoid unforced errors. The Republican nominee’s path to reaching the necessary 270 electoral votes cuts straight through Iowa, which has leaned Democratic for years, and Wisconsin, where no Republican presidential candidate has won since 1984.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Governor Terry Branstad has named an associate juvenile court judge to the district court bench in the 2nd Judicial District, which covers central and northern Iowa. Branstad appointed James McGlynn yesterday to fill the vacancy created by the retirement of Judge Joel Swanson of Carroll. McGlynn is from Webster City.

MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) — A former Forest City police officer charged in a fire at the police station and in the theft of a rifle from a police car has been convicted of arson and burglary charges. A judge on Friday found Thaddeus Ellenbecker guilty of second-degree arson and second-degree burglary.

MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa (AP) — Police have released the names of an officer and two jailed suspects in a credit union robbery in Marshalltown that led to an exchange of gunfire between an officer and one of the suspects. Ben Crisantos is charged with attempted murder after allegedly firing at Officer Vern Jefferson, hitting him in the leg. Jefferson returned fire, hitting Crisantos in the lower extremities. Both were taken to hospitals and released. The second suspect, Abel Ramirez, is charged with first-degree robbery.

Page County arrests

News

November 2nd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Page County Sheriff Lyle Palmer says two women were arrested Thursday, on separate charges. 23-year old Mandalyn Kay Hamilton, of Shenandoah, was arrested at around 2:50-p.m., on a warrant out of McDonald County, MO. Hamilton was taken into custody at her residence in Shenandoah and brought to the Page County Jail, where she later posted a $750 cash bond and was ordered to appear in a Missouri court at a later date.

And, at around 4:30-p.m., 21-year old Sheree Powers, of Clarinda, was arrested by a Page County Sheriff’s Deputy, on a charge of Driving Under Suspension. The woman was taken into custody following a traffic stop, as she was driving2003 Mazda Tribute, registered to Larry Powers, of College Springs. Powers later posted a $1,000 cash bond, and was released pending a court date.

(Correction) 2 injured in high speed Mills County accident

News

November 2nd, 2012 by Ric Hanson

(Correction to passenger’s name made by Mills Co. Sheriff’s Office on Nov. 5th, 2012)

A Council Bluffs woman and a passenger in her car, were injured Tuesday night (Oct. 30th), during a single-vehicle accident about 5-miles north of Glenwood. The Mills County Sheriff’s Department reports the driver of the vehicle, 44-year old Renee Michelle Palen, of Council Bluffs, along with her passenger, Nathan Malik, of Council Bluffs, were transported by Glenwood Rescue to Mercy Hospital in Council Bluffs.

Officials say Palen’s 2008 Dodge was traveling north on 221st Street at a high rate of speed, when it went off the road into the east ditch. The vehicle hit a culvert and went airborne over Elrod Road, before it hit another culvert and went airborne again. The vehicle landed on its passenger side on 221st Street, and came to rest on its top in the west ditch. The accident happened at around 6:50-p.m.