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Harlan Police report (issued 1/15/15)


January 16th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Harlan Police Department, Thursday, released a report on recent arrests and incidents. Authorities say on Monday, 32-year old Anne Criswell, of Lincoln, NE., was arrested on an active warrant out of Mills County for assault. She was taken to the Shelby County Jail and later turned over to Mills County.

Last Sunday, Harlan Police arrested 24-year old Shanae Hytrek, Harlan, after officers were called to a disturbance in the 1000 block of 6th Street. Hytrek was transported to the Shelby County Jail where she was charged with intoxication in public. That same day, 48-year old Thomas Carney, of Harlan, was taken into custody following a traffic stop. Carney was transported to the Shelby County Jail where he was charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated, possession of a controlled substance, prohibited acts penalties, failure to have a valid driver’s license, and open container – driver.

On Saturday (Jan. 10th), 23-year old Kayla Strong, and 35-year old Jason Andersen, both of Irwin, were arrested on active Pottawattamie County warrants for burglary. Both subjects were transported to the Shelby County Jail.

On Jan. 9th, Harlan Police officers responded to a call by a concerned subject in reference to drugs possibly being used in an apartment where a small child was an occupant. As a result of the investigation, 19-year old Marcus Morgan, of Harlan, was arrested and charged with possession of a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia, and prohibited acts penalties. The case involving the child was referred to the Department of Human Services.

On Jan. 7th, officers were called to the 2100 block of 9th Street for a vehicle that had gone out of control striking a utility pole, phone pedestal, and several mailboxes. As a result of the investigation, 34-year old Clayton Sorensen was cited for driving under suspension, fail to prove security against liability (accident), operating a non-registered vehicle, and failure to maintain control.

And as we had reported last week, on Jan. 5th, 41-year old Kenneth Kokemiller, of Perry, was taken into custody after a pursuit through the city of Harlan and south on Highway 59 that ended in a roll over crash. Kokemiller was found to be driving a stolen vehicle belonging to Michael Schnurr, of Rowland, IA. Kokemiller was transported to Myrtue Medical Center where he was treated and released to law enforcement. He was then transported to the Shelby County Jail where he was charged with 2 counts of speed, 2 counts of failure to obey stop signs, driving while suspended, trespass, reckless driving, possession of stolen property and eluding.

Hog confinement fire northeast of Shelby Thu. night


January 15th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Firefighters from Shelby, Harlan, Avoca, Minden and Elk Horn were called to the scene of a hog confinement facility fire northeast of Shelby, Thursday night. A motorist passing by reported the fire at 515 Hazel Road, south of County Road F-58, just before 8-p.m.

Authorities on the scene reported at around 8:07-p.m. that the structure was fully engulfed and the roof had collapsed.

No other details are currently available.

Lottery worker faces fraud charges in mystery Hot Lotto case


January 15th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa officials say a lottery employee has been arrested after being identified as the mystery winner of a multimillion-dollar Hot Lotto ticket that baffled investigators for years. The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation said Thursday that 51-year-old Eddie Raymond Tipton, of Norwalk, faces two felony counts of fraud. He is being held at the Polk County Jail.

Tipton is the security director for the Multi-State Lottery Association in Iowa. Officials say he bought the Hot Lotto ticket in 2010, despite being legally prohibited. He is accused of asking others to claim the ticket. A New York lawyer in 2011 waited shortly before the one-year deadline to try to claim the ticket but later withdrew. Authorities say the case remains under investigation.

A weather warm-up means it’s time to start yard work

Ag/Outdoor, News

January 15th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Forecasters predict a warm-up with highs in the 40s and 50s tomorrow (Friday) for much of southern and central Iowa, which presents an opportunity for homeowners to get a jump on their spring lawn care duties. Extension educator John Fech says much of the region had very dry weather heading into winter and dormant plants could likely use a drink. Fech says, “If you have a chance, prioritize and pick out the plants that are most important to you, roses or shrubs, and attach a soaker hose temporarily on days when you’re 40 degrees or above.”

Make sure to disconnect and drain the hose when you’re done, he reminds, to prevent plumbing problems when it freezes again. When it’s bitter cold, he says it’s better if you don’t walk on your lawn at all, as that crunching grass underfoot will have a hard time recovering.  “Forget about those little trips out to fill the bird feeder and to dump stuff on the compost pile,” Fech says. “Generally, it’s a good idea to stay off of frosty turf. Sometimes, those things will injure the crown of the plant.” Don’t step on your frozen grass, he says, unless you absolutely can’t avoid it.

“If you have to do it, go ahead and do it, but keep in mind that you may have a strip of turf or some footprints through the turf that aren’t doing so well in the spring,” Fech says. “If that’s the case, those just might take a longer time to recover.” The National Weather Service is calling for high temperatures in many parts of Iowa to rise Friday and Saturday to unseasonable highs in the 40s and 50s, while highs are predicted to slip back into the 30s next week, with lows back in the teens.

(Radio Iowa)

Ernst to deliver GOP response to Obama’s State of the Union address


January 15th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Iowa’s rookie U.S. Senator is getting a prime speaking slot next week. Republican congressional leaders have picked Iowa Senator Joni Ernst to deliver the Republican response to President Obama’s “State of the Union” address next Tuesday. This is the first time G-O-P leaders have asked a first-year senator to speak in the prime time slot. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell says Ernst understands that middle-class Americans want Congress “to get refocused on their concerns.”

Ernst released a written statement, saying congress must “implement real solutions” that “grow a vibrant economy…and ensure the federal government beings to run more effectively and efficiently.” The televised response to the president’s annual “State of the Union” speech is carefully crafted and has lately been used by whichever party does not hold the White House as a forum to showcase its future leaders.

Last year Ernst captured the attention of the nation’s political class with a campaign ad touting her hog castration skills. Senator Marco Rubio and Louisiana Governor Bobby Jindal have both delivered the Republican response during President Obama’s presidency and both are now considered possible presidential candidates in 2016.

(Radio Iowa)

Council Bluffs Low Vision Support Group moves forward


January 15th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A new vision loss support group continues to gather momentum as it prepares to hold its third meeting. The Low Vision Support Group will again meet at The Center at 714 Main Street in Council Bluffs on Tuesday, January 20 at 1:00 p.m. The agenda for this meeting includes discussion about group leadership, an appeal for volunteers to call members with phone reminders about upcoming meetings, and sharing topics of interest to feature at future meetings. The group also aims to establish a regular meeting time and date.

In addition, applications will be available for people to sign up for the City of Council Bluffs’ transportation service, Council Bluffs Special Transit Service (STS). Dawn Kruse, Rehabilitation
Teacher with the Iowa Department for the Blind, is providing assistance to the group during its formative phase.

The Council Bluffs group is one of several support groups throughout the state that aim to connect those with vision loss in local communities. The groups provide an opportunity for blind or visually impaired Iowans to share ways of doing everyday tasks non-visually, provide support to each other, and participate in fun activities. Support groups generally meet once a month.

For a list of vision loss support groups in the state of Iowa, visit the Iowa Department for the Blind webpage at: http://www.idbonline.org/living/support-groups. People of all ages and from all communities interested in learning more about living with vision loss are encouraged to attend.For more information, contact Dawn Kruse at (712) 355-2843.

Guthrie County deputy engages in pursuit of a pickup truck


January 15th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Details were released today (Thursday) about a pursuit that took place Jan. 3rd, in Guthrie County. The Sheriff’s Dept. reports at around 1-a.m., a Guthrie County Sheriff’s Deputy patrolling the Bagley area observed a dark colored possibly three-quarter ton truck northbound on Quail Road. The truck failed to stop at the stop sign posted at Quail Road and Highway 141. The vehicle proceeded through the intersection at approximately ninety miles per hour and went airborne through the intersection.

The deputy attempted to catch up to the vehicle as it entered Greene County on Quail Road at a high rate of speed. The truck failed to stop for the deputy and a vehicle pursuit ensued through southern Greene County until west of Rippey when the deputy terminated the pursuit.

The suspect vehicle is believed to be dark in color, possibly a three-quarter ton and is believed to be a Chevrolet. Anyone with information about the truck or its occupant(s) is asked to contact the Guthrie County Sheriff’s Office at (641)747-2214.

Man needing medical assistance fights with law enforcement in Guthrie County


January 15th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A central Iowa man faces numerous charges following an incident that took place last Friday, in Guthrie County. Sheriff’s officials say 39-year old Thomas E. Hathaway, of Des Moines,was charged with Possession of Drug Paraphernalia and Interference with Official Acts – both Simple Misdemeanors, Three Counts of Assault on a Peace Officer – Serious Misdemeanors, and Harrassment in the 1st Degree – an Aggravated Misdemeanor. Hathaway also had warrants for his arrest out of Polk County at the time of his arrest. Additional charges are currently pending.

Authorities say at approximately 8:33-p.m. January 9th, the Guthrie County 911 Center received a call for a man needing medical assistance at 3481 280th Road rural Redfield, Guthrie County. Due to the nature of the call, a Guthrie County Sheriff’s deputy responded. Panora EMS and a Guthrie County Sheriff’s deputy arrived at the same time. Panora EMS attempted to render aid to Hathaway, but was unable to due to his behavior.

While the sheriff’ deputy and EMS were present at the residence, Hathaway became verbally and physically abusive. Hathaway made numerous threats towards the sheriff’s deputy and EMS. At one point, the sheriff’s deputy attempted to subdue Hathaway with his Taser but the Taser malfunctioned and was not effective. At that point, the sheriff’s deputy safely escorted EMS from the residence and called for additional law enforcement to respond. While waiting for back up, a physical confrontation ensued between the owners of the residence and Hathaway, who was visiting the residence. Law enforcement and EMS re-entered the residence and took Hathaway into custody with the assistance of the occupants of the residence.

Once in custody, Hathaway was placed in the rear of a Panora Police Department squad car. Soon after, he kicked the rear window out of the patrol car causing significant damage. With the assistance of numerous law enforcement officers, Hathaway was safely booked into the Guthrie County Jail without injuries to innocent bystanders or law enforcement.

During his arrest and processing, Hathaway assaulted three different law enforcement officers; Officer Ryan Harding of the Stuart Police Department, Officer Matt Stringham of the Guthrie Center Police Department and Deputy Kent Gries of the Guthrie County Sheriff’s Office. None suffered injuries as a result of the assaults.

Hathaway has since posted $200 cash bond and was transferred into the custody of the Polk County Sheriff’s Office. The Guthrie County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by Panora EMS, Panora Police Department, Stuart Police Department, Guthrie Center Police Department, Adair County Sheriff’s Office and the Iowa State Patrol.

3 charged in connection with Guthrie County fight


January 15th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Three people face charges following a fight at a gas station in Bayard. The Guthrie County Sheriff’s Office says Amy L. Chapman, of Bagley, was charged with Assault and Disorderly Conduct – both simple misdemeanors. Johnathon Kennedy, of Bagley, and Randy D. Esslinger, of rural Bayard, were charged with Disorderly Conduct.

Officials say on January 12th,deputies were called to investigate an alleged assault that took place at the Sparkie’s Gas Station in Bayard. After multiple witnesses were interviewed, witness statements were obtained and video surveillance was viewed by law enforcement, the three Guthrie County residents were charged.

The charges stem from a verbal altercation that occurred between the parties inside of the store that spilled into the parking lot where the altercation became physical.

Survey: economy remains weak in rural parts of 10 states


January 15th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A monthly survey of bankers suggests the economy will remain weak in rural parts of 10 Midwestern and Western states because of low grain and oil prices. The region’s overall economic index improved slightly to 50.9 in January from December’s neutral score of 50. The index ranges from 0 to 100. Any score above 50 suggests growth while a score below 50 suggests decline.

Creighton University economist Ernie Goss says growth is being restrained in rural areas because of low corn and fuel prices. But bankers say ethanol plants haven’t slowed production much. Despite the concerns, rural businesses have adding some jobs. The January hiring index was 52.8, down from December’s 55.2.

Bankers from Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming were surveyed.