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2 suspects identified, charged in Iowa gun battle

News

October 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – Authorities have identified the suspects who allegedly robbed a bank and shot and wounded two police officers during a high-speed chase as two young men from northeastern Iowa.

Jeremiah Mumford

The Iowa Department of Public Safety said Wednesday that 24-year-old Jeremiah Mumford, of New Hampton, is charged with six counts of attempted murder and five counts of terrorism. His alleged accomplice, 19-year-old William Clayton of Osage, is charged with aiding and abetting and five counts of terrorism.

William Clayton

Both men made initial court appearances and are being held in the Bremer County Jail.

Special Agent Larry Hedlund of the Division of Criminal Investigation says the suspects used multiple rifles and handguns to shoot at police who were pursuing them after Tuesday’s bank robbery in Maynard. He called it a “running gun battle.”

Cass County Supervisors approve two new hires & tax exemption

News

October 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors this (Wednesday) morning, approved the hiring of two new employees. The action came during their meeting in Atlantic.  The Board approved the hiring of Brandi Wittrock as a part-time Driver’s License Examiner at a rate of $15 per hour. Wittrock, a Walnut High School graduate, lives in Atlantic with her husband and two daughters, will work in the County Treasurer’s Office. The Board also approved the hiring of Krista Wessling, as a full-time Legal Administrative Assistant for the Cass County Attorney’s Office, effective November 5th. Wessling will also be paid $15-per hour.

And, the Board approved a request from the Cass County Historical Society, a non-profit organization, for an exemption from paying taxes on a property at 410 Main Street in Griswold. The exemption is for the January 1st, 2012 valuation. Auditor Dale Sunderman explained in the motion placed before the board, why the exemption was allowable.

He said the CCHS had filed and been granted an exemption for future years beginning with January 1st, 2013. The organization became owners of the property prior to July 1st, 2012, but did not receive title to the property until March 22, 2012, therefore the group was unable to file for the exemption prior to the February 1st, 2012 deadline. The application for exemption was filed instead on April 1st, which Sunderman said was in as timely manner as feasible.

Gas prices are NOT going up, even post superstorm

News

October 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Gasoline prices are -not- fluctuating in Iowa in the wake of the so-called super-storm. Six oil refineries on the East Coast cut production or closed prior to Hurricane Sandy’s arrival on Monday night. That’s usually cause for gas prices going up, but it hasn’t happened. Rose White, at Triple-A-Iowa, says production is halted at those refineries, but demand is also down significantly since so many roadways and airports shut down temporarily.  “Gasoline demand at this time of year is usually near 8.5-million barrels per day but it’s likely to be at least one-million barrels per day lower for the next several days because of the shutdown in operations,” White says. “This drop in demand has the potential to pressure pump prices lower, especially in regions like the Gulf Coast, which normally supplies products to the East Coast but will not feel the direct effects of the storm.”

White says gas prices in Iowa will likely remain stable or fall slightly through Election Day but that could change, depending on the amount of damage, which is being estimated in the tens of billions. So far though, pump prices aren’t budging. “A big part of that is because of the downturn in the demand we’re expecting to see as a result of this storm,” White says. “Remember, this is a very densely populated area and with the shutdown of the airline operations as well as people staying home, that’s certainly going to create a big lowering of demand for fuel products in that region of the country.” The average price for a gallon of gas in Iowa is three-38. That’s down from three-49 a week ago and three-81 a month ago. Iowa’s current average gas price is 14-cents below the national average.

(Radio Iowa)

8AM Newscast 10-31-2012

News, Podcasts

October 31st, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

7AM Newscast 10-31-2012

News, Podcasts

October 31st, 2012 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

Creston man escapes injury after pickup enters ditch & burns up in Cass County

News

October 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

(Update 11-a.m. Wed.)

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office says a Union County man escaped injury after the pickup he was driving left the road and caught fire Tuesday evening. 56-year old Dennis James Case, of Creston, was traveling on Oxford Road, between 640th and 650th Streets, when he fell asleep at the wheel of his 2001 Chevy S-10 pickup. The vehicle entered the ditch and caught the dry grass on fire. The flames consumed the truck, which was considered to be a total loss. Case was cited for Failure to Maintain Control and No Proof of Insurance. Officials say the accident, which happened at around 6:30-p.m., remains under investigation.

Consultant says Iowa paying workers above market

News

October 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A consultant’s report says base pay for 18,500 state of Iowa workers is nearly 18 percent higher than comparable workers in the marketplace.  The report from Aon Hewitt says pay ranges for 11 Iowa positions were higher than the market, while ranges for seven positions were below market. The report released Tuesday also says pay ranges for Iowa’s employees are significantly higher than those in other states.

Administrative Services Department director Mike Carroll says the study was commissioned primarily because state officials have never done a comprehensive examination of state employee pay and benefits.  Danny Homan is president of the largest state employees’ bargaining unit, and he says the study lacked credibility and was designed to convince the public that state workers are overpaid.

DNR asks hunters, public to help identify poachers

Ag/Outdoor, News, Sports

October 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Thousands of hunters are moving through the fields and woods of Iowa now with several hunting and trapping seasons underway. The coordinator of the Iowa Department of Natural Resources “Turn in Poachers” or TIP hotline, Steve Dermand, is asking hunters to help ensure all the activity is legal. Dermand says those who are not hunting can also help out by reporting activity or people who don’t seem right. “A landowner who comes across a big deer carcass lying in his field with the head removed, you know wondering about a buck that was probably poached there on his property. We encourage people who see things, who see other individuals who are doing things that are maybe contrary to the law,” Dermand says. You can call the TIP at 1-800-532-2020 and anonymously report what you saw.

He also encourages hunters and those who fish to be ready to warn the D-N-R of people they see breaking the law. “Have the cellphone number of your conservation officer programmed in your cellphone so that you can hit it quickly on a speeddial, and when you come across that (illegal activity) it’ll be something that you can report immediately,” Dermand says. “The one thing we’ve learned over time in this business as far as fish and wildlife poaching goes — the long you wait — the less likely we are to make a case.” He says it’s important to write down information like a description of the person involved, the license plate number and color and make of a vehicle, and the area where the crime happened. That way you won’t forget it later and the investigators won’t be left without key information.

“It just seems like evidence will disappear, or it gets cold and you are not able to find the things you need to find in order to make a case,” Dermand says. You may not think it’s a big deal if someone shoots an extra deer illegally, but he says helping stop poachers protects the rights of those who legally hunt and fish and even those who just like to enjoy nature. “The big deal about the fish and wildlife and deer included is that they are our Iowa natural resources, they are the things that are out there in the field that belong to all of us. Every citizen, every individual in this state,” Dermand explained. “And we should be proud of that. We should be proud of the resources that we have available to us, for viewing, for harvest by legal means, and just enjoyment.”

The TIP number is a 24 automated system. You can also report poaching online at: www.iowadnr.gov/tip, and it will send a report directly to the local officer. In cases where officers investigate and write a ticket, the individual who reported the violations can be eligible for a reward.

(Radio Iowa)

King, Vilsack debate disaster aid for Hurricane Sandy

News

October 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Republican Congressman Steve King says he will not give the Federal Emergency Management Agency a blank check to deal with the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.  “I want to get them the resources that are necessary to lift them out of this water and this sand and the ashes and the death that’s over there in the east coast and especially the northeast,” King says. “But they need to come with a plan on how to spend it.” When Hurricane Katrina struck the Gulf Coast in 2005, King voted to immediately send 10-and-a-half billion dollars to the disaster zone, but King balked at a second installment of nearly 52-billion for things like temporary trailer homes and preparing for future disasters.

“Can you imagine in the middle of a disaster to ask for appropriations for mitigating future disasters?” King said. “That’s why I said no on that second round of appropriations for Katrina…because they spent it on Gucci bags and massage parlors and everything you can think of — in addition to what was necessary.” King made his comments last night (Tuesday) during a debate in Mason City and Christie Vilsack, King’s Democratic opponent, immediately responded to that Gucci remark. “Comments like that, Congressman King, are heartless,” Vilsack said. “You were one of 11 congresspeople who voted against flood relief in Hurricane Katrina and you said it was the proudest vote that you ever took.” Vilsack suggested that’s not “who we are in Iowa.”

“I hope that he will show the kind of kindness that Iowans do when we take care of people and when we have a disaster here as we have in past years with flooding,” she said. “How can we expect people to come in and take care of our disasters if we’re not willing to come in and take care of theirs?” King said he was willing to “take some lumps” over refusing to support disaster relief for Katrina damage since some of the money was ultimately misspent.

“Congressman King, your positions are extreme,” Vilsack replied. “In Iowa, we take care of people.” Last night’s debate was the seventh and final face-to-face meeting of the two candidates in Iowa’s new fourth congressional district. The debate was co-sponsored by K-G-L-O Radio, The Mason City Globe-Gazette and K-I-M-T television.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa early News Headlines – Wed., Oct. 31st 2012

News

October 31st, 2012 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Two suspects in a bank robbery who officials say shot and wounded two officers during a high-speed chase are in custody. The Iowa State Patrol says the two men were arrested last night after police surrounded them in a wooded area by a rock quarry near Frederika. It came about seven hours after the Maynard Savings Bank in Maynard was robbed.

PERRY, Iowa (AP) — Authorities say a pedestrian in Perry has died after being hit by a pickup truck. The Iowa State Patrol says the accident happened yesterday morning after the truck driver turned onto the street and didn’t see the pedestrian.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — The trial of an Iowa City woman accused of running over and killing a friend has been reset for next year. Miranda Lalla’s trial has been rescheduled for February after a judge allowed her to get a new attorney. Lalla is accused of hitting Pamela Gross with her pickup truck in June.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Authorities say an Iowa City toddler has recovered after eating an unknown prescription drug found outside his home in a mobile home park. The 3-year-old boy was hospitalized last week after officials say he swallowed some type of prescription drug. Police say the boy ate it thinking it was candy.