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Burglary at Council Bluffs greenhouse

News

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Police in Council Bluffs are asking for your help in finding a vehicle, tools and other equipment that was reported stolen over this past weekend. Authorities say the Dallas Johnson Greenhouse at 2802 Twin City Drive was broken into at around 2:18-a.m., Sunday. Several tools, a generator and a pickup were taken. The pickup is described as an extended cab 2005 blue Ford F-250, bearing Iowa license plate 378 XST, with a 9’ Boss snow plow attached.

Anyone with information about the burglary should call the Council Bluffs Police Department at 328-STOP. Your tip could be eligible for a cash reward and you
can remain anonymous.

Photo of stolen pickup w/plow attachment.

Photo of stolen pickup w/plow attachment.

Coralville to vote on plans for Hayden Fry statue

News, Sports

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

CORALVILLE, Iowa (AP) – Coralville’s City Council is set to vote on an agreement with a company to design and create a life-sized bronze statue in honor of former University of Iowa football coach Hayden Fry. The Iowa City Press-Citizen reports that the City Council is scheduled to vote Tuesday. The city intends to hire Max-Cast, a fine arts foundry, to create the $36,000 statue that would be placed along a street known as Hayden Fry Way.

Max-Cast owner Steve Maxon has been working with the University of Iowa to develop conceptual drawings for the statue. Fry, who now lives in Mesquite, Nevada, retired from coaching following the 1998 season. He led the Hawkeyes to the Rose Bowl three times and was inducted into the College Football Hall of Fame.

ATV stolen from Union County farm

News

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s officials in Union County say an Afton man reported the theft over the weekend, of an ATV. Brett Lee Weis, of Afton, reported Monday that sometime over the weekend someone took his orange 2012 Polaris ATV-12 550 from an out building on Pheasant Avenue. The loss was estimated at $10,000.

(12-p.m. News)

Bluffs man charged in connection w/2006 murder investigation

News

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

OTTUMWA, Iowa (AP) – Authorities have arrested two men suspected of starting a 2006 fire that killed two Ottumwa residents in Wapello County. The Iowa Department of Public Safety says the two were arrested Monday and are each charged with two counts of first-degree murder. Court records say both have pleaded not guilty and are scheduled for a court hearing on Feb. 1st. They were identified as 28-year-old Christopher Yenger, of Ottumwa, and 27-year-old Zachary Dye, of Council Bluffs.

Authorities say the fire killed 20-year-old Nathan Messer and 22-year-old Seth Anderson, both from Ottumwa. The Public Safety Department says the case was reopened this month after authorities learned that the fire was started by people who were involved in a physical altercation at the home shortly before the fire was discovered.

Griswold man arrested Monday night following an accident in Griswold

News

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

(The Sheriff’s Office issued a **correction** saying the accident took place in Griswold, NOT Cumberland)

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office reports one person was arrested following an accident Monday night, in Griswold. Authorities say 22-year old Dillon Lee Foote, of Griswold, was taken into custody for OWI/2nd offense, and cited for Failure to Maintain Control.

Foote was traveling south on Adams Street in Griswold at around 10-p.m., when he lost control of the Honda Accord he was driving. The car hit a guy-wire and flipped onto its top, causing $3,500 damage.

Foote was taken to the Cass County Jail and was released this (Tuesday) morning, on his own recognizance.

Bluffs woman arrested Tuesday on a warrant

News

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Deputies in Mills County arrested a Council Bluffs woman this (Tuesday) morning. Officials say Jennifer Lea Neal was arrested at the Pottawattamie County Jail on warrants for Eluding and Inference with Official Acts. Neal was being held in the Mills County Jail on $5,000 bond.

Emerson woman hurt in Mills County crash, Monday

News

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A woman who fell asleep at the wheel of her car Monday morning crashed into a semi in Mills County. Sheriff’s officials say Claire Thalken, of Emerson, was transported to  the Montgomery County Hospital by Macedonia Rescue, following the crash that happened on Highway 59, at around 9:50-a.m., Monday.

Officials say Thalken was traveling north on the highway when she fell asleep. Her car crossed the centerline of the road and collided with a southbound 2007 semi driven by Michael Looper, of Hancock. The semi was disabled in the crash and came to rest in the southbound lane. The car came to rest in the northbound lane.

Officials say Looper was not injured in the crash.

Rollover accident in Pott. County, Monday night

News

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The driver of a pickup truck was injured Monday night during a rollover accident on Interstate 80, east of Minden in Pottawattamie County. According to the Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Department, 58-year old Christopher Barrett, of Salado, TX, was trapped in his vehicle after it hit a patch of ice, went out of control and rolled over twice before coming to rest on a ditch, on its top.

Barrett was freed by mechanical means from his Ford F-350 and transported to Jenny Edmundson Hospital, in Council Bluffs.The accident happened on I-80 eastbound, near mile marker 31.

Bluffs man pleads not guilty to assault & child endangerment

News

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A Council Bluffs man plead not guilty, Monday, to felony counts of assault and child endangerment for allegedly physically abusing a baby. According to the Daily NonPareil, the girlfriend of 23-year old Rodney Weatherwax, who was also charged, has been released from jail on bail.

On Dec. 21st, Weatherwax, was charged with two felony counts of assault causing willful injury, a felony count of abandonment of a dependent person, and felony count of child endangerment. He remains in Pottawattamie County Jail with bond set at $200,000. If convicted on all counts, Weatherwax faces up to 45-years in prison. The charges stemmed from the more than 20 fractures found on an infant.

According to his arrest affidavit, the infant, who was born on July 26, suffered more than 20 fractures between Sept. 1st and Nov. 30th. Along with the fracture, narcotics were also detected in the child. The infant’s mother, 19-year old Kuira Lawton, of Council Bluffs, also faces charges.

Lawton was charged Jan. 20th with felony abandonment of a dependent person. If convicted, Lawton could face up to 10 years in prison. Lawton, posted $10,000 bail through a bonding company on Jan. 21st. Her next scheduled court date will be a preliminary hearing on Thursday, Feb. 11th.

The child is currently living with relatives.

Iowa’s Unemployment Rate Remains at 3.4 Percent in December

News

January 26th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, IOWA – Iowa’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained at 3.4 percent in December. The state’s jobless rate was 4.3 percent one year ago. The U.S. unemployment rate remained at 5.0 percent in December. Beth Townsend, director of Iowa Workforce Development said “Iowa’s economy ended on a high note in December, maintaining the growth we have seen since the beginning of the year.”

Townsen said “Iowa’s nonfarm employment gained jobs for the ninth time this year, expanding by 1,100 jobs in December. More importantly, the state’s unemployment rate held at 3.4 percent this month which continued the downward trend from the high of 4.2% established in January 2015.”

The number of unemployed Iowans fell to 58,300 in December from 58,800 in November. The current estimate is 15,300 lower than the year ago level of 73,600. The total number of working Iowans increased to 1,650,500 in December. This figure was 3,200 higher than November and 8,500 higher than one year ago.

Iowa’s nonfarm employment added 1,100 jobs in December, expanding Iowa’s total nonfarm employment to 1,584,700 jobs. The monthly gain was the second-consecutive and helped cement a year that was generally positive for nonfarm employment. Overall, the state averaged 2,100 jobs added per month during the year.

Private sectors fueled the job growth this month with government paring jobs (-1,100) due to early release of local government workers. With this loss, government is down slightly compared to last year (-1,400). Since last year, the state is now up 25,600 jobs—a gain of 1.6 percent versus last December. Job gains in December were led by gains in construction (+2,400), and may be partially attributed to fair weather to end the year allowing firms to continue working late into the year. Other services also had a large gain (+1,400).

The growth was an expansion on an already prosperous year that saw 4,500 jobs added. The education and health services sector increased in December (+1,100) due primarily to hiring in private education (+900). Smaller gains this month included manufacturing (+300), financial activities (+200), and mining (+100). Alternatively, trade and transportation led all sectors in jobs lost this month (-2,500). Much of this loss stemmed from a disappointing retail season (-2,000). Professional and business services shed jobs (-800) with losses being fueled by administrative support and waste management occupations.

Annually, construction has added 10,000 jobs since last December—the most of any sector in terms of jobs gained and percentage (+12.9 percent). However, some of these gains may wane some in 2016 as large-scale projects come to an end. Education and health services are markedly up (+6,700), followed by other services (+4,500) then financial activities (+3,200). Annual losses were slight in those industries that are down annually with the exception of manufacturing (-1,700) and information services (-700).