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New info. released on Solon abduction

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

New information was released this (Sunday) afternoon by the Davenport Police Department, with regard to the abduction Saturday, of a 9-year old girl from Solon. Officials say at around 4:20-p.m. Saturday, the Iowa Department of Public Safety issued an AMBER Alert state-wide reference to the abduction of Brianna Crane. Shortly after 7:00-p.m., information was developed that the suspect in the AMBER Alert, 48-year old Kenneth Eugene Johns, was in Davenport.

Working throughout the night with the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation, information was developed around 7:00-a.m. Sunday, that the suspect was in a house in the 2600 Block of Farnam Street and believed to be armed and dangerous. Davenport Police Department’s, Emergency Service Team and Negotiators were deployed. After approximately 2½ hours of negotiating and with Johns’ dialogue becoming more threatening and violent, he was tactically taken into custody and transported to Scott County Jail, without further incident.

Johns, a stepfather to Brianna Crane, was charged with Parole Violation, and charges are pending with the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office with regard to the abduction. Any further information will be released by the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office and the Iowa Department of Public Safety. For the safety of the Officers and the neighbors, the Bettendorf Police Department’s BearCat Armored vehicle was requested and deployed.

3 dead after falling through the ice in Union County

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES – Extra caution around ice is being urged by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources as warmer weather is causing conditions to deteriorate rapidly. Three men drowned Saturday after falling through the ice on a farm pond in Union County.The men have been identified as 71-year old Earl Burkhalter, 73-year old Charles Critz, and 68-year old James Oshel, all of Creston.

WHO-TV in Des Moines reports the men had gone ice fishing Saturday afternoon. Authorities responded at around 8-p.m. Saturday to a possible drowning at a farm pond, north of Creston, after the men failed to return, and a person went looking for them. They found a hole in the ice with fishing equipment still on top of the ice. Rescue crews located the bodies within 20-minutes of beginning their search. They were found about 20-feet from the shore.

Ice depths are not uniform on any body of water and there is no such thing as safe ice. Warmer weather makes the ice even more unpredictable. There are many factors that impact ice formation making some locations thinner than others. With the warm weather, ice conditions can change a lot in one day. Verify the ice thickness for yourself and test it often. If the ice does not look right, stay off it.

(Update 10-a.m.) Amber Alert suspect in custody

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Johnson County, IOWA – Officials with the Iowa Department of Public Safety report the suspect in Saturday’s Amber Alert has been apprehended.

Kenneth Johns

Kenneth Johns

48-year old Kenneth Johns was taken into custody at around 9:35-a.m. today (Sunday), by the Davenport Police Department’s Tactical Unit, at a residence on Farnum Street and Central Park Avenue, in Davenport. No injuries were suffered during the arrest. The subject of the Amber Alert, 9-year old Brianna Crane, of Solon, was dropped-off safely by a third party, to law enforcement at around 1:30-a.m. today.

Brianna Crane

Brianna Crane

No further information will be released at this time due to the on-going investigation.

How to have the talk with older Iowans about giving up driving

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Iowa’s population is among the nation’s oldest and some motorists continue to drive on Iowa’s roads well into their 90s, which for some, may pose a risk to themselves and others. Nick Jarmusz, at Triple-A-Iowa, says family members need to be direct with their elders when safety is clearly becoming an issue. “It’s important for families to remember that the issue isn’t necessarily driving itself,” Jarmusz says. “The issue is about mobility and independence.” Older drivers themselves can often be the best judges of when it’s time to give up the keys, knowing their personal challenges with vision, hearing, mobility, reaction times and more.older driver

“Self-assessment is a critical part to this,” Jarmusz says. “We actually have a lot of resources on the topic for senior drivers at a website we’ve set up. The site, aaa-dot-com, includes suggestions for having that difficult talk with an older driver.  “We recommend families avoid the intervention-style or anything that can come across as overly confrontational and make elderly relatives feel like they’re being backed into a corner or being talked down to,” he says. While the conversation may be uncomfortable, it should be driven by compassion and a concern for everyone’s health and safety.

“It doesn’t have to be a binary discussion, you know, you either have your keys and are driving or you’re not,” Jarmusz says. “There’s a lot of space in between there to self-regulate or to set up parameters for when it is and is not acceptable to drive.” A national Triple-A survey found nearly 90-percent of motorists who are 65 years old and older suffer from health issues that may affect driving safely.

(Radio Iowa)

Construction begins on USS Omaha

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) – The future USS Omaha is now under construction in an Alabama shipyard.
The Navy says a keel laying ceremony was held for the USS Omaha last month. Austal USA is building the vessel. The USS Omaha is a littoral combat ship, which can operate in shallow and deep water. It will be roughly 420 feet long.

The future, USS Omaha's sister-ship, (the identical) USS Independence.

The future, USS Omaha’s sister-ship, (the identical) USS Independence.

The USS Omaha will be designed to deploy manned and unmanned vehicles and sensors to fight mines and submarines.

Safety concerns block effort to raise interstate speed limit

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa drivers will stay out of the fast lane for now, after lawmakers did not advance a bill that would have boosted the speed limit on interstate highways, bringing it in line with many nearby states.  The bill sought to raise the speed limit on interstate highways to 75 mph, up from the current limit of 70 mph. It died in the state Senate several days ago, amid questions about the safety ramifications.

That means Iowa drivers will continue at slower speeds than those behind the wheel in many nearby states. Kansas, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota all have speed limits of 75 mph.  Iowa’s interstate highway speed limit was last increased in 2005, up from 65 mph.

Iowa early News Headlines: Sun., March 8th 2015

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

(Des Moines) – An AMBER ALERT issued Saturday afternoon in Iowa has been cancelled The Iowa Department of Public Safety reported early Sunday morning 9-year old Brianna Crane, of Solon, was safely returned to her family. The girl was allegedly abducted at around 2:30-p.m. Saturday, by her step-father, 48-year old Kenneth Eugene Johns and the pair were thought to have been in southeast Iowa hours after the Alert was issued.

BURLINGTON, Iowa (AP) – A Burlington glass manufacturer has told employees the plant will close its doors May 1st, leaving the eastern Iowa city with about 30 fewer jobs. The Burlington Hawk Eye reports that the PPG Industries plant announced the impending closure on Friday. Employees were told of the plan Thursday. The 29 employees affected will be given an opportunity to transfer to PPG manufacturing plants in Carlisle, Pennsylvania and Wichita Falls, Texas.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The clear rift over immigration opened up publicly Saturday at an Iowa forum on agriculture, energy, trade and food policy. Most of the nine possible Republican presidential candidates for 2016 called for enforcing existing laws. But outliers Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida, and South Carolina’s Senator Lindsay Graham proposed offering the estimated 11 million immigrants in the U.S. illegally a path to legal status.

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) – Police in Cedar Rapids are investigating a shooting that has left one man with critical injuries. The Cedar Rapids Police Department says it received reports of several shots fired just before 3 a.m. Saturday. Police have not yet released the name of the man shot or other details of the shooting.

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) – Iowa State wrapped up the Number 2 seed behind Kansas in the Big 12 tournament in the last game of the regular season. The Cyclones’ 89-76 win Saturday night at TCU locked in the pairings for the tournament that starts Wednesday in Kansas City.

Essex man arrested on drug charges early Sun. morning

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A traffic stop in Red Oak early this (Sunday) morning, resulted in a man being arrested on numerous drug charges. Red Oak Police say 31-year old Matthew Wayne Echternach, of Essex, was taken into custody at around 12:25-a.m. near the intersection of North Broadway and West Oak Streets. The man was charged with OWI Drugged/1st Offense, Possession of a Controlled Substance/Methamphetamine, Possession of a Controlled Substance/Marijuana, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.

Echternach was being held in the Montgomery County Jail on $1,000 cash bond. Red Oak Police were assisted during the traffic stop, by deputies with the Cass County Sheriff’s Office.

Red Oak man arrested Saturday night while on an ATV

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

A traffic stop Saturday evening in Montgomery County led to the arrest of a Red Oak man. Red Oak Police say 57-year old Jeffrey Alan Runyan was arrested at around 7:40-p.m. for driving an ATV on a public street, while allegedly intoxicated. Runyan was charged with OWI/3rd offense and Driving While Revoked. He was being held in the Montgomery County Jail on $5,000 bond.

Iowa AMBER ALERT cancelled Sunday morning

News

March 8th, 2015 by Ric Hanson

An AMBER ALERT issued Saturday afternoon in Iowa has been cancelled The Iowa Department of Public Safety reported early Sunday morning 9-year old Brianna Crane, of Solon, was found safe.  Capt. Gary Kramer with the Johnson County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release that Brianna Crane was found early Sunday and “appears to be in good health.” Kramer said authorities are investigating what happened.

The girl was allegedly abducted at around 2:30-p.m. Saturday, by her step-father, 48-year old Kenneth Eugene Johns and the pair were thought to have been in southeast Iowa hours after the Alert was issued. Authorities are still searching for Johns. He is still believed to be armed and dangerous. If you know where he is, do not approach him. Instead, you should call 9-1-1.

Kenneth Johns

Kenneth Johns

Brianna Crane

Brianna Crane