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Mapleton woman faces prison time in dog dumping case


March 30th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (AP) – A 49-year-old Iowa woman on probation for dumping 23 dead or dying dogs in a Nebraska cornfield in 2008 has admitted violating probation by living with 13 dogs.  A judge told Denise Withee, of Mapleton, Iowa, on Thursday that she’ll be resentenced on April 26 and that she could face prison time. Court records say Withee originally was sentenced in September 2009 to four years of probation and was ordered not to own, possess or reside with any animal for five years. The 13 dogs were found by Iowa authorities in January in the home Withee shares with her mother. Withee will remain in Hall County Jail in Nebraska until her sentencing.

7AM Newscast 03-30-2012

News, Podcasts

March 30th, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson


Storms drop large hail over parts of Cass County Thursday night


March 30th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Severe storms that popped-up in southeastern Nebraska Thursday evening didn’t take long to affect the atmosphere in southwest Iowa. Storm warnings for parts of the listening area were issued at around 6:40-p.m.  Motorists began pulling under bridge overpasses along Interstate 29 near Council Bluffs, as the area was hit by heavy rain and hail. At about that same time, the National Weather Service in Valley, NE, issued a Tornado Watch for four counties in  the southwest corner of the state.

Storms continued to build and move eastward, until they began to form and move northeast into Cass County just after 7-p.m.  At around 7:25-p.m., a Severe Thunderstorm warning was issued for parts of Cass and Audubon Counties. The storms moved through Griswold and Atlantic, dumping heavy rain. Here at the KJAN studios, we received a total of .88″ of an inch of rain, with most of that having fallen between 7-and 9-pm.

Pea-sized hail was observed just a  few miles south and northeast of Atlantic as the storms passed through, but further off to the southwest, near Griswold, quarter-sized hail was reported at 8:10-p.m. by a trained weather service spotter.  About 15-minutes earlier, another spotter reported golf ball-sized hail reported 4-miles northeast of Griswold .

Other reports of hail included  quarter-sized hail one-mile north of Braddyville in Page County at around 8:40-p.m.   There were no  immediate reports of damage. Just when it appeared the storms had died down near 9-p.m. and were moving out of the listening area, the National Weather Service issued a Severe Thunderstorm Watch for those counties mainly south of Interstate 80 until 2-a.m., but most of the storms weakened significantly prior to the watch having expired.

Storm report 3-29-12 8:58-p.m.

News, Weather

March 29th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Rainfall in Atlantic= .8”   Some reports of pea-sized hail south and northeast of Atlantic as the storms passed through. Quarter-sized hail reported 3 miles south of Griswold at 8:10-p.m.*;  Golf ball-sized hail reported 4-miles NE of Griswold at 7:54-p.m.*; quarter-sized hail reported 1-mile north of Braddyville in Page County at 8:42-p.m.*.  (* indicates report from trained National Weather Service Spotter

Severe Thunderstorm Watch is in effect until 2-a.m. for Cass, Adair, Adams, Madison, Union, Taylor and Ringgold Counties in SW IA.

1 dead 2 injured in Adair County crash


March 29th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

(ISP Corrects victims’ hometowns and age in an update at 6-p.m. to our original story posted at 5:05-p.m., Thursday)

Two people were injured, while a third person was killed in a single-vehicle accident Thursday afternoon, in Adair County. According to the Iowa State Patrol, the crash victims were in a 1995 Mercury Sable that was northbound on County Road P-33, about one-half mile north of the Adair/Union County line, when the car went out of control as it was passing a semi at around 12:15-p.m.  The car entered a ditch and came to rest in a stream.

The driver of the car, 20-year old Mark Stout, of Greenfield and a passenger, 49-year old Susan Lavonne Rinkert, of Creston were injured and transported to the Greater Regional Hospital in Creston., before being flown by Mercy 1 helicopter to Mercy Hospital in Des Moines.   A second passenger in the vehicle, 53-year old James Edward Rinkert, of Macksburg, was also transported to the hospital in Creston, where he died from his injuries.

The Patrol says Stout wore his seat belt, but neither of the Rinkert’s wore theirs. The accident remains under investigation.

Caring Bridge site set up for Atlantic Business Manager diagnosed with Leukemia


March 29th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Community School District’s Business Manager is undergoing chemotherapy for treatment of Acute Myelocytic Leukemia, or AML.

Atlantic Community School District Business Mgr. Mary Beth Fast

Mary Beth Fast, who came to the Atlantic District from the Griswold Community Schools in 2010, was diagnosed with the condition earlier this month.

AML is the most common type of leukemia among adults, although it affects people of all ages. In AML, immature leukemia cells rapidly accumulate in the bone marrow, destroying and replacing cells that produce normal blood cells. The leukemia cells are released into the bloodstream and are transported to other organs, where they continue to grow and divide.

A “Caring Bridge” site has been established for Mary Beth’s friends, family, students and faculty members to follow her progress as she endures the chemo procedures and tests. The website is http://www.caringbridge.org/visit/marybethfast

Mary Beth was initially diagnosed with an upper respiratory infection on February 24, 2012.  After completing the prescriptions, she still had a sore throat.  She returned to her doctor on March 12th, and upon further examination he decided to run a full blood test.  The next day she saw another physician, who confirmed the original doctor’s  blood tests results, and performed a bone marrow biopsy.  Before leaving his office he had diagnosed her with acute leukemia.

Mary Beth was admitted to Immanuel Hospital in Omaha, NE, on March 22nd.  The “induction  phase” of her treatment started the day she was admitted.  Her Caring Bridge site said she is on a high dose chemo therapy.  The goal is to completely eradicate her marrow of cancer cells.  This includes destroying all cells.  Once that is accomplished, new cells will begin forming, hopefully free of cancer. Melinda McDermott has assumed Mary Beth’s duties as Business Manager and School Board Secretary, in her absence.

Bedford man sentenced to prison for being felon in possession of a firearm


March 29th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A Taylor County man was sentenced earlier this month to nearly four-years in prison for being a felon in possession of a firearm. U-S Attorney Nickolas A. Klinefeldt today (Thursday), announced Southern District of Iowa Judge James Gritzner sentenced 48-year old James Leroy Meek, Jr., of Bedford, to 46-months in prison.

Meek, Jr.  pleaded guilty to a charge of being a Probibited Person in Possession of ammunition in December, 2011, and agreed to turn over 4000 rounds of ammo, which was found during a search of his home in April, 2010. Meek, Jr.  had a prior conviction in Taylor County, of furnishing precursor drugs for unlawful purposes.

(12-p.m. News)

Iowa Lottery says $1M prize awaits ticket buyer


March 29th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) – Iowa Lottery officials say someone who bought a Powerball ticket in Council Bluffs has won $1 million. The lottery said in a news release Thursday that the ticket matched five of the six Powerball numbers drawn Wednesday night: 11, 16, 29, 50 and 58. The ticket didn’t match the Powerball number of 33, so the buyer didn’t win the $50 million Powerball prize. The ticket was sold at a Hy-Vee store on the east side of the western Iowa city.

The ticket buyer has not yet stepped forward. The lottery says it’s the third $1 million-winning ticket sold since the $2 Powerball began in January. Gary Higens, of Des Moines, won $1 million on March 1. Steve Petty, of Adair, won $1 million on Feb. 20.

Atlantic woman arrested for taking picture of female nursing home resident


March 29th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

(updated 6-a.m. 3/30/12)

An Atlantic woman faces a serious misdemeanor charge of Invasion of Privacy-Nudity, for allegedly taking an inappropriate picture of a bathing 78-year old female resident at the Salem Lutheran Home, in Elk Horn. The incident was reported to authorities on March 22nd35-year old Amanda Sedina, an employee of the nursing home, was taken into custody last Friday.

She was released Monday on $1,000 bond and was scheduled to have made her initial court appearance yesterday (Thursday). Her preliminary hearing, which had been set for April 12th, has been continued. A new date for the hearing has not yet been set.

Break-ins and incidents of Criminal Mischief in Harlan


March 29th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

 Police in Harlan say they’re investigating several incidents of reported break-ins and criminal mischief. The reports were received Tuesday, and include incidents which occurred at the Shelby County Fairgounds, ball fields and private property. Officials remind the public that Crime Stoppers will pay a reward of up to $1,000 for tips leading to the arrest and conviction of persons responsible for similar crimes. 

Harlan Police report also, an Atlantic man, 22-year old Trent Bramman, was charged with 5th degree criminal mischief, after the owner of Big House East told authorities Sunday, that obscenities had been scratched in paint on the property. 

In other news from the Harlan Police Department, 35-year old Sheila Boell, of Harlan, was arrested last week on charges of Possession of a Controlled Substance/2nd offense, and unlawful possession of prescription drugs. Her arrest was the result of a traffic stop.And, 45-year old Timothy Turner, of Harlan, was arrested Saturday, following a reported disturbance in the 900 block of Victoria Street, in Harlan. Turner was charged with domestic abuse assault and simple assault.