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Remains found in Sac City are missing man

News

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

SAC CITY, Iowa (AP) – The skeletal remains found buried in the basement of a Sac City home are those of a man last seen three years ago.

Mark Koster

Sac City Police Chief John Thomsen says the state medical examiner’s office used dental records to confirm the identity as Mark Koster. He was listed as a missing person in 2010. His family reported he was last seen in May 2009.

Koster who was 58, was the prior owner of the home and had been living with an unknown man about three months before he disappeared. Police are investigating the death. No one had lived in the house after Koster disappeared and family members sold the house in May.

The new homeowner was remodeling the basement and found the buried remains.

SUV driver injured during collision in Atlantic Wednesday evening

News

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Police Department says one person suffered minor, possible injuries during a collision Wednesday evening between a van and an SUV. Officials say Morgan Munsey, of Atlantic complained of injuries to his wrist following the accident, which happened at around 6:45-p.m., at the intersection of 7th and Poplar Streets. Munsey was checked out by a Medivac Ambulance crew but did not require transport to the hospital.

The P-D says a 1999 Plymouth Voyager van driven by Blake Zweck, of Atlantic, was traveling west through the intersection when his vehicle was hit by Munsey’s 2002 Ford Escape, as it was traveling north and attempting to turn left onto Poplar. Munsey was cited for Failure to Yield upon making a left turn. Damage from the collision amounted to $12,000.

Scrap metal theft arrests in Pottawattamie County

News

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Two men were arrested Wednesday afternoon in Pottawattamie County, in connection with the theft of metal from private property. Pottawattamie County Sheriff Jeff Danker told KJAN News the men were taken into custody following an investigation that resulted from a call his office received at around 1:30-p.m. about a suspicious brown pickup truck with two people inside, in the vicinity of 145th Street and Sandy Loop, or about five-miles northwest of Crescent. Danker says a deputy responded and found a man cutting up old farm implements with a torch. When the man was questioned, he claimed he had been dropped off by his boss, and was cutting up the metal to take to scrap metal dealers in Omaha. He said he’d been doing working on the site for several days. Another deputy located the driver of the pickup, and brought him back to the scene.

Danker says when deputies contacted the owners of the property and implements, they said no one had permission to be on their land or to cut up the implements. Both men were subsequently taken into custody. The man who was allegedly doing the cutting, was identified as 52-year old Terry Kelly, from Omaha. He was charged with Theft in the 2nd degree, Burglary in the 3rd degree, Criminal Mischief in the 2nd degree, and Possession of Burglary Tools. The driver of the pickup, 47-year old John Gundersen, of Missouri Valley, was charged with Driving while Barred, and Theft in the 5th degree. Both men were brought to the Pottawattamie County Jail and held on $10,000 bond each, in association with the 2nd degree Theft charge.

Car following too close causes motorcycle to crash

News

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A Council Bluffs man who was injured when he crashed his motorcycle Wednesday, says the accident happened as he was trying to get away from a tailgating motorist. 22-year old Keith Fisher told Council Bluffs Police investigators a vehicle was following him a little too closely and it made him uncomfortable. Fisher was driving a 1984 Honda motorcycle northbound on North Broadway shortly after 4 p.m., when a vehicle came up behind him.

Fisher told authorities he tried to speed up to pull away from the vehicle, but the car kept closing on his cycle. When he sped-up to increase the distance between the vehicles, Fisher lost control of his cycle, which slid on its left side down the road. Fisher suffered abrasions on his arms and legs during the crash. He was transported by Council Bluffs Fire and Rescue to Jennie Edmundson Hospital, where he was treated for his injuries and released. There were no citations issued.

Drought helps move Iowa road projects ahead of schedule

News, Weather

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The drought conditions this year have hurt crops and damaged some lawns, but the situation allowed Iowa road construction crews to finish projects weeks in advance. Mark Bortle, with the Iowa Department of Transportation, says the reconstruction of a six-and-a-half mile stretch of Interstate 380 in Waterloo — for example — was completed one month ahead of schedule. “A lot of our other projects, because they haven’t had rain delays, have been completed,” Bortle said. “In a normal year, we’re trying to get them buttoned up at this time. This season, because of the dry weather, we’ve been able to get ’em buttoned up in October as opposed to early November.”

Road crews not only benefited from the drought this summer, they were able to begin work in early March rather than late April because of the milder than usual Winter. “We basically gained a month on the Spring end and a month on the Fall end with the good weather,” Bortle said. Many contractors have requested they be allowed to start on major projects that aren’t even slated to begin until next year. The DOT has denied most of those requests to avoid impacting traffic over the winter.

“We don’t want to get into a situation where we’re partly ready to go and not being able to get (the road) in a safe condition,” Bortle said. “So, most of the contracts that’ve been let this Fall with start dates of next Spring we haven’t allowed them to start early because of the uncertainty of the weather conditions.” Through the end of September, the Iowa DOT had spent $435 million dollars on road construction projects this year. Bortle said that compares to just $340 million over the same period last year and it’s a direct result of the dry weather.

(Radio Iowa)

Lenox Teen faces charge in connection with vandalism

News

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

A Lenox teen faces a Criminal Mischief  charge after authorities investigated an incident of vandalism. According to the Lenox Police Department, at around 5:30-PM, Tuesday, officers were called to the City Park, in reference to vandalism. When they arrived, police were shown a concrete bench which had been broken. Witnesses indicated they had seen a male juvenile jumping on and kicking the bench intentionally causing the damage.

After further investigation, an unidentified 15-year old male was charged with 3rd degree criminal mischief and referred to the juvenile court officer.

State election official explains problems with website on election night

News

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

State officials say Election Day went smoothly, except for problems with the official website that displays election returns. Mary Mosiman, Deputy of Elections for the Iowa Secretary of State, says an internal server problem caused some disruptions at the site for about two hours.  “We did notice it right away, of course, so we went to Plan B and just put static information up there that was updated as we received it, but it wasn’t our original webpage design,” Mosiman said.

The problem popped up just after 9:00 p.m., when closed in Iowa. Many website users on social media reported receiving error messages instead of seeing election data. While the server problem was being corrected, elections staff posted PDF files of election results on the website. Mosiman said that was a big challenge because data had to be received from races around the state. “And then to be compiled and displayed in a user friendly manner…so, once we (identified) the server issues, we got that fixed as rapidly as possible and then it worked as we intended,” Mosiman said.

As part of the workaround, many counties had to email or fax results to the Iowa Secretary of State. Mosiman said the intended election night reporting system was back on-line shortly before 11:00 p.m. The system had undergone nearly two dozen successful tests in the days leading up to Tuesday, according to Mosiman.

(Radio Iowa)

Atlantic City Council discusses west 22nd Street speed limit

News

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic City Council, Wednesday, discussed a report from the Community Protection Committee, with regard to a petition it received to reduce the speed limit on west 22nd Street, from Chestnut to Palm. The petition called for the City to reduce the speed limit from 45-to 35-miles per hour along that particular stretch of road. Mayor Pro Tem Steve Livengood Chairs the CPC.

Livengood said the petitioners asked to lower the speed limit, but they didn’t give an explanation for their request. The Committee recommended to the Council, that they amend the ordinance to lower the speed limit, because it opens the door to public comment about the matter. He says the recommendation from the CPC to the Council was to lower the speed limit. During discussion, Councilman Dana Halder said he understands the likely safety concerns among residents in the newly developed area, but there are alternatives for those residents who fear getting hit backing out of their driveways.

Halder says the speed limit was established before the residents moved in to the new subdivision, and those homeowners are provided with a turn-around in the subdivision that should be used, instead of backing out. During the public forum portion of Wednesday night’s meeting, Keith Harlan, who has lived in the area for 16-years, was one of the residents who signed the petition. He said he’s noticed that since the new pavement was laid along 22nd Street, traffic is moving faster. His personal concern is with regard to getting up to speed on the hill before someone rear-ends him. However, he said he’s “Probably old enough to watch out for” oncoming traffic, and he hopes his wife and visitors to his home will be able to do the same. He says he’d hate to see someone “smacked.”

Additional public input will be taken during the next City Council meeting before action on amending the ordinance is taken.

Traffic stop on I-80 nets 90-pounds of marijuana

News

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Deputy Brian Miller and his k-9 partner Francisco have scored another drug bust. Sheriff Jeff Danker told KJAN News Deputy Miller stopped a 2012 Toyota Tundra pickup truck for speeding along eastbound Interstate 80 at around 11:25-a.m. Wednesday. After talking with the driver, Miller became suspicious about the man’s story. While speaking with the driver, Deputy Miller noticed the man’s hands were shaking, he appeared nervous, and the lived had a “lived-in” look. He said also that the drivers’ story seemed suspicious. After issuing the driver a warning citation for speeding, Miller asked and was refused permission to search the vehicle.

Danker said during Deputy Miller’s free-air search around the vehicle with his k-9 partner, the dog alerted to the presence of narcotics in the bed of the truck. A search revealed three duffle bags containing a total of 90-pounds of marijuana in vacuum-sealed bags.

The driver, 30-year old Andrew Ducharme, of Guilford, CT, was placed under arrest and charged with Possession of a Controlled Substance with the intent to Deliver, Prohibited Acts, and a Tax Stamp violation. He was also issued a warning for the speeding violation. Ducharme was brought to the Pottawattamie County Jail, and later posted a $5,000 bond.

9-a.m. Local/Regional News (podcast) Nov. 8 2012

News, Podcasts

November 8th, 2012 by Ric Hanson

With KJAN News Director Ric Hanson….