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Missouri man held after southern Iowa standoff


July 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

MOUNT AYR, Iowa (AP) – A 51-year-old Missouri man has been talked into putting down a shotgun and surrendering to authorities in southwest Iowa’s Ringgold County. The Des Moines Register says Randy Longstreath, of Bethany, Missouri, was arrested around 4:30 a.m. Wednesday after a six-hour standoff south of Mount Ayr.

The sheriff’s office says Longstreath had gone to the home where his estranged wife, stepson and another adult male were staying. The sheriff’s office says Longstreath fired the shotgun and threatened everyone in the home.  The people all escaped without harm before a SWAT team and negotiator arrived. The negotiator eventually persuaded Longstreath to surrender.

Court records say Longstreath faces charges that include domestic abuse assault, harassment, burglary and going armed with intent.

DOT will dispense cards for cannabis oil users


July 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Iowans with an Iowa neurologist’s clearance to take cannabis oil to treat chronic epilepsy will go to the Iowa D-O-T to get a card which will shield them from drug possession charges in Iowa. The Iowa Department of Public Health has unveiled its proposed rules for implementing the new state law passed by legislators and the governor this spring. Deborah Thompson, the legislative liason for the department, says while her agency will process the paperwork and determine who is eligible, the D-O-T will hand out the cards because there’s a D-O-T licensing outlet in each of Iowa’s 99 counties.

“To bring people that have this debilitating disease to Des Moines may cause more headaches than it’s worth,” Thompson says. “They have a system also that enables them to connect with law enforcement and the law enforcement folks can, the way they would with any of our IDs, drivers licenses, they have a connection to the DOT’s system that allows them to see more details than a card provides for.” The cards can be issued to adults who have an Iowa neurologist’s recommendation to use cannabis oil to treat their “intractible” epilepsy. The parents or guardians of children with the condition can also apply for the card. Thompson says the new law was fairly specific about what hoops were required to qualify for the cards and her agency’s proposed rules follow those guidelines, including a requirement that other treatment options have been tried first before opting for cannabis oil.

“The neurologist will then send the completed application, including the written recommendation, directly to the Department of Public,” Thompson says. “We thought this would marginalize the opportunity for fraudulent behaviors if we got it directly from the neurologist’s office.” Staff in the Iowa Department of Public Health will review the applicant, then notify the D-O-T if it has been approved and a card may be issued. There is no Iowa site that dispenses the cannabis oil, so caregivers will have to go out of state to get the product. The rules were discussed during Wednesday’s Iowa Board of Health meeting in Iowa City. The board will vote on the rules at its September meeting. A legislative committee will also have a chance to review the rules before they take effect.

(Radio Iowa)

Groundbreaking ceremony set for Jefferson casino


July 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Construction equipment has begun dirt work on the recently approved casino in Jefferson but local and state officials are gathering to turn a few spades of dirt themselves in the ceremonial groundbreaking celebration to officially kick off the project. The Wild Rose Jefferson casino project was awarded a gambling license on June 12 by the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission.

The $40 million project including an events center, sports bar, restaurants, and an Iowa store will add 275 jobs. A 71-room hotel also will be built. The casino is going up at the intersection of U.S. Highway 30 and Iowa Highway 4 in Jefferson. It is scheduled to open for business late next summer.

Iowa Rep. Chip Baltimore, a Boone Republican, is among the speakers at Thursday afternoon’s groundbreaking ceremony.

Iowa fair to display ‘Field of Dreams’ sculpture

Ag/Outdoor, News

July 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa State Fair will feature a “Field of Dreams” butter sculpture this year along with its iconic butter cow. Fair officials say the sculpture will commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Iowa-based movie filmed at the Lansing Family Farm in Dyersville. The molded butter sculpture will depict aspects of baseball and Iowa’s farmlands. It will join the butter cow in a 40-degree cooler.

The fair will also offer a new interactive exhibit called “Farm with Us.” It will include bushels of corn and soybeans for people to touch and an interactive digital screen. This year’s fair will be held Aug. 7-17.

Iowa early News Headlines: Thu., July 10th 2014


July 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Governor Terry Branstad has issued a disaster emergency proclamation for seven Iowa counties in response to recent storms and flooding. The counties covered are Audubon, Grundy, Ida, Jasper, Keokuk, Poweshiek and Washington. The governor is also asking the Federal Emergency Management Agency to assess 20 counties that were hit hard by storms last month.

WELLMAN, Iowa (AP) — A former business manager for an eastern Iowa school district has been accused of stealing about $8,00 through an employee credit card. The Mid-Prairie School District says Cindy Steege of North Liberty faces theft charges in connection to unauthorized charges on the card. School officials say they contacted authorities last month after finding possible financial irregularities.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A boy who ran away from a Dubuque juvenile facility has been hospitalized after he stole a county road department pickup truck and crashed it into a utility pole. The Dubuque Telegraph Herald reports the boy left Hillcrest Family Services and took the truck yesterday afternoon. Police say the boy suffered minor injuries in the crash.

FAIRFIELD, Iowa (AP) — Part of an old building in eastern Iowa has been torn down over concerns it might collapse. The Fairfield Fire Department says it responded to an emergency call Tuesday about the structural integrity of the building. Businesses and apartments near the building were temporarily evacuated. An excavating company came in and tore down some of the structure to avoid potential injuries.

Audubon County included in Disaster Emergency Proclamation


July 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Gov. Terry Branstad, Wednesday, issued a proclamation of disaster emergency for seven counties in response to the ongoing flooding and severe weather beginning June 26, 2014, temporarily lifted certain transportation weight restrictions and requested the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to conduct assessments in 20 counties impacted by the June 26 and continuing storms.

Counties included in this most recent disaster proclamation are Audubon, Grundy, Ida, Jasper, Keokuk, Poweshiek and Washington. The governor’s proclamation allows State resources to be utilized to respond to and recover from the effects of these storms.

In addition, the Iowa Department of Homeland Security and Emergency Management (HSEMD) made a request Wednesday to FEMA, to conduct damage assessments in 20 counties impacted by the June 26 and continuing storms. The damage assessments, which will primarily cover public infrastructure, will be conducted jointly by FEMA, HSEMD and local officials. Results of the damage assessments could be used to determine if a request for a Presidential Disaster Declaration is warranted. Damage assessments will be conducted in the following counties: Audubon, Black Hawk, Butler, Cedar, Des
Moines, Grundy, Hamilton, Hardin, Ida, Iowa, Jackson, Jasper, Johnson, Jones, Lee,
Linn, Louisa, Mahaska, Muscatine and Poweshiek.

This is the fourth such request that HSEMD has made to FEMA to conduct damage assessments as a result of June severe weather.

(Updated 5:30-a.m. 7/10) Head-on collision reported near Walnut


July 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Emergency crews were called to the scene of a head-on collision Wednesday afternoon, southeast of Walnut. The accident happened at around 4:25-p.m. on 530th near the intersection with Sumac Road in Pottawattamie County. Multiple injuries were reported, along with victims trapped. LifeNet responded to the scene along with Walnut Rescue and Medivac Ambulance. Two people were in each vehicle.

Three of the victims were transported from the scene. Two of them went to the Cass County Memorial Hospital in Atlantic. Another was flown to Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha. Family members say two women were in one vehicle. One of the vehicles was driven by Leah Jenkins, of Atlantic. Her sister says Leah suffered from several broken bones and other, unspecified injuries, but was expected to make a full recovery. A passenger in the car suffered from scrapes and bruises. Both women were wearing their seat belts.

The status of a victim in the other vehicle is not available, while the fourth person was not injured. The names of the other accident victims have not officially been released.

The accident remains under investigation by the Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Office.

Computers seized in connection with 2001 western IA murder


July 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – Authorities have seized a computer and flash drives from the Iowa home of a woman whose daughter was convicted of a high-profile murder, based on a search warrant alleging the two worked together to harass prosecution witnesses by spreading defamatory information about them online.

Records obtained by The Associated Press show the items were seized Tuesday at the Urbandale condominium of 68-year-old Anna Richter. Her daughter, Tracey Richter, was convicted of the murder of a neighbor in what prosecutors said was a plot to frame her ex-husband. The incident happened at Richter’s home in the Sac County town of Early.

The warrant application says the Richters and their associates are targeting witnesses who testified against Tracey Richter. No one has been charged.

Report disputes Branstad smaller government claims


July 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A new report from a nonpartisan state agency questions whether Gov. Terry Branstad is cutting the cost and size of state government as he claims. Branstad insists the state is on track to meet his promised 15 percent reduction in the cost of government. He says he’s cut more than 1,000 state jobs.

The Legislative Services Agency, responsible for providing financial reports for lawmakers, says state employment has increased and state expenditures have fallen only slightly since Branstad took office.
Branstad’s job cuts figure includes only the executive branch under his control. It doesn’t include state universities or the legislative and judicial branches of government.

He insists he’s on track to cut expenditures by 15 percent when compared to the projected spending of his predecessor, Democratic Gov. Chet Culver.

Harlan Police report


July 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Harlan Police Department today (Wednesday) issued a report on their most recent arrests and investigations. Officials say two people were arrested Monday. 46-year old Kelly Robinson, of Harlan, was arrested after allegedly striking a 14-year old male. Robinson was brought to the Shelby County Jail and charged with Domestic Abuse Assault. And, 46-year old Patsy Nuzum, of Harlan, was arrested on a charge of Domestic Abuse Assault, after officers were called to a domestic disturbance Monday at Westridge Acres.  That same day, officers took a report of vandalism. A Wall Lake woman said someone broke out the driver’s side window on the 2013 Dodge Avenger, while the vehicle was parked in a lot at the corner of 7th and Baldwin Streets, in Harlan. The damage was estimated at $150. It’s not clear what hit the window, and the incident remains under investigation.

On Sunday, police in Harlan arrested 31-year old’s Michael Carrier and Stephanie Josits, both of Harlan. They were charged with Possession of Stolen Property and 4th degree theft. Both were brought to the Shelby County Jail. Josits cited and released, while Carrier remained in the jail. The pair were arrested after police received a call about someone removing merchandise from the Crees Garden Center. An investigation ensued and a search warrant executed, during which officers found the missing garden store items, in addition to several items believed to have been stolen during recent church burglaries.

On July 4th, 42-year old Frankie Jo Garren, of Harlan, was cited for leaving the scene of an accident, and failure to provide proof of insurance, after a vehicle belonging to Kirk and Erin Andersen, of Harlan, was struck. The driver of the other vehicle, identified as Garren, then fled the scene. And finally, on July 1st, 33-year old Ian Leib, of Harlan, was arrested for public intoxication and disorderly conduct, after authorities received a report of a man being inappropriate with the staff at the Norman Stamp Aquatic Center. Leib was also served with notice that he is no longer allowed on the pool property.