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Hog barn destroyed, 2400 hog die in NW IA fire

News

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

More than 24-hundred hogs died in a fire at a hog confinement in northwest Iowa’s Plymouth County. Fire fighters from five communities fought the blaze, which was reported at about 10:30 Friday morning.

According to Kingsley Fire Chief Paul Huth, the hog barn was fully engulfed when firefighters arrived on the scene. He says the barn is totally gone. Huth says an electrical exhaust fan is what is being blamed for the fire’s origin. “The owner…had done chores in the other building and he smelled smoke…That’s when he realized a fan was engulfed [in flames]…It was blowing fire into the building and that’s what started it all,” Huth says.

The Kingsley fire chief says the fire burned for a couple of hours before firefighters were able to bring the blaze under control.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa woman sentenced to prison for theft, forging checks

News

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — A Sioux City woman has been sentenced to 15 years in prison for forcing another vehicle off the road and stealing the occupant’s purse, as well as passing forged checks. The Sioux City Journal reports 42-year-old Stephanie Dunscomb pleaded guilty Wednesday to first-degree theft and forgery.

Police say that on May 5, Dunscomb used her vehicle to force another vehicle off the road in Sioux City, then approached the victim’s vehicle. Police say she reached through a partially open passenger-side window to open the door and steal the victim’s purse, which held a wallet and checkbook.

Police soon found Dunscomb’s vehicle broken down with the victim’s purse inside it. Police say Dunscomb also stole a billfold from a home in November and later forged checks from it.

UPDATE: Anita man injured in Friday morning crash

News

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

In an update to our earlier reports, the Iowa State Patrol says a Cass County man was injured during an accident that took place at around 4:15-a.m. today (Friday), southwest of Cumberland. 26-year old Devin Anthony Boots, of Anita, suffered severe head and neck injuries was transported by Medivac Ambulance to the Cass County Memorial Hospital, and then flown by LifeNet to the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha, after the 1999 Toyota Corolla he was driving on westbound Highway 92 (Richland Road), for reasons unknown, crossed the center line of the road and struck the driver’s side of a utility trailer being pulled by an eastbound 1998 Chevy 1500 pickup. The accident happened near the intersection with 660th Street.

After the impact, the Toyota went out of control and spun sideways before it entered the south ditch and rolled over, striking an embankment. The car came to rest on its wheels facing southeast. The driver of the pickup, 24-year old Nicodemus Xavier Lane, of Atlantic, was not injured.

The accident remains under investigation. Crews with the Cumberland and Massena Fire and Rescue Department and Deputies with the Cass County Sheriff’s Office assisted at the scene.

ISU study finds children impacted ‘profoundly’ by traumatic events

News

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

An Iowa State University study finds traumatic events like natural disasters or terrorist attacks can have a profound impact on children a world away. Carl Weems, an I-S-U professor and chair of human development and family studies, says this week’s pop concert bombing in England where children were killed is a prime example.

“We’re looking at how perceptions of competence, or self-efficacy, predicts who does well after something like that,” Weems says. “We found that perceptions of competence were protective of developing PTSD symptoms, but we also found that exposure to those kinds of events can diminish perceptions of competence.”

Weems says parents and teachers should not try to shield children when bad things happen, but instead work to help kids build up their confidence to handle coping with events. “Perceptions of competence are really important for a sense of — if you think you can do it, then you are typically better at accomplishing things. If you feel like you have the competency, the skills and abilities to get things done, then you tend to get things done.”

Weems says adults need to be there for the children and enable them to understand what’s happening during a crisis. “It’s important to help kids process this information,” he says. “You typically can’t hide kids from seeing it on TV and it’s important to process it with them and assure them that the family or the school or whatever has plans in place to deal with those kinds of things.”

Given the impact of Hurricane Katrina on the Gulf Coast in 2005 and the Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, Weems worked with professors at Louisiana State University on this study, which was published in the latest edition of the Applied Developmental Science academic journal.

(Radio Iowa)

Senator Ernst introduces bill to train new military members to prevent sexual assault

News

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

Iowa Senator Joni Ernst, a Republican from Red Oak, has introduced a bill with a Democrat Senator from New York to mandate in-person sexual assault prevention training for new members of the military. Ernst says this training would add to what’s already in place. “Those who are currently serving, they do undergo mandatory training when it comes to sexual assault prevention. And we do have many layers within our leadership — whether its our enlisted soldiers or whether its in our officer ranks — that are out there ever day encouraging respectful actions within our military,” Ernst says.

She says they want to have the new recruits get in-person training to so they don’t create an ineffective computer-based teaching program. “You will always find bad actors,” Ernst says, “and what we’re trying to do is really stop that from every happening. Especially by bringing it up right away as young men and women are entering the military.”

Ernst says the training would include proper use of social media for newly enlisted service members in all branches of the U-S military before they depart for basic training. “They need to be thoroughly briefed on social media, what’s acceptable, what’s not acceptable. What would be considered a sexual assault in and out of the military — they need to understand those things,” Ernst explains. “We are taking what society gives us and we are trying to mold them into productive service members.”

Ernst says the 2016 annual report from the Department of Defense estimates that 14-thousand-900 service members experienced a sexual assault, compared to 20-thousand-300 when the last comprehensive survey was done in 2014. She says even with the drop in those numbers, more needs to be done.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa motorists told to buckle-up, slow down, put down phones

News

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

The Memorial Day weekend is recognized as the start of the summer vacation season and Iowa State Patrol Trooper Vince Kurtz is pleading with motorists to put their phones away and focus on the road. “It goes without saying that distracted driving is a serious problem on our roads,” Kurtz says.

Distracted driving is blamed in large part for the more than 400 traffic fatalities in Iowa last year – up from 320 the previous year. A new state law takes effect on July 1 making text and app use a primary offense, meaning police can pull over and ticket a driver who is spotted sending a text or email or recording video with their phone. The fine for a texting-while-driving ticket will be $30. Iowa law enforcement officers, through the holiday weekend, will be watching for motorists who aren’t buckled-up. Kurtz says seat belts are proven to save lives.

“National statistics now show that 80 percent of passengers ejected from their vehicles in a crash are killed,” Kurtz said. Around half of all fatal crashes involve drivers who are speeding, according to Kurtz. “Excessive speed reduces reaction time and increases your stopping distance,” Kurtz said.

AAA (Triple-A) Iowa has predicted this will be the busiest Memorial Day weekend for travel in the state in more than a decade.

(Radio Iowa)

DNR says campers won’t notice much impact from tight budget

Ag/Outdoor, News

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

All state court employees have an unpaid day off today (Friday) in a cost-cutting measure implemented by the state judicial system to make up for cuts in the system budget. Judges will be working today, but their offices won’t be open to the public. Budget cuts are hitting all areas of state government, including the state park system as the unofficial kickoff to the summer camping season arrives. Julie Sparks with the D-N-R’s State Parks Bureau, says campers shouldn’t notice many issues.

“We’re keeping up our campsites pretty well. There may be a little delayed maintenance in some of our parks because of some of the staffing challenges that we have,” Sparks says.

Campers were allowed to start reserving sites for this weekend three months in advance, and the sites fill up quickly. Sparks says they are ready to get the season underway. “For the most part we’re really excited and anxious to have people come to our parks — of course that generates revenue for us too — so we love to have our campers come there and visit.”

It has been a cool wet spring, but Sparks says it looks like there may be some good weather for the weekend. “We’re all hopeful,” Sparks says. “It’s beautiful, our Iowa springs, it’s a good time to be camping and out in our parks, that’s for sure.”

(Radio Iowa)

2 men arrested on drug charges in Pott. County

News

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

The Pottawattamie County Sheriff’s Office reports two men were arrested recently on separate drug charges. A little after 2-a.m. today (Friday), 32-year old Joshua David Mott, of Henderson, was arrested for OWI/2nd offense, Possession of a Controlled Substance, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Mott was driving a 2002 Ford pickup in the vicinity of Bunge and Wabash Avenues south of Council Bluffs, when he was pulled over for “Swerving all over the roadway.” Upon further investigation, a deputy determined Mott showed clues of impairment. He was also allegedly in possession of 2.6-grams of marijuana, and a pot pipe.

And, at around 8:40-p.m. Thursday in Walnut, a Pott. County Deputy arrested 44-year old Richard Jessie Duran, of Council Bluffs, after a routine check of his license plate showed a possible warrant for Duran, who is the vehicles’ registered owner. When the Deputy approached Duran’s car near the Walnut Kum-and-Go Store, the man was looking down at his center console. That’s where the Deputy observed a white crystal substance. Further investigation resulted in Duran taken into custody for Possession of a Controlled Substance and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.

The Sheriff’s Office said also, 24-year old Caen Alexander Krahn, of Council Bluffs, was arrested Thursday afternoon on a warrant for Parole Violation. He was booked into the Pott. County Jail.

Cass County Board of Supervisors approve three bridge project matters

News

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Board of Supervisors met this (Friday) morning and took action on three of the five matters on their agenda. The Board took under advisement plans for a hearing on the vacating of a portion of roadway in the 7300 block of 660th Street (Between Yankton and Youngstown Road) until County Engineer Charles Bechtold could speak with a couple of property owners in that area, and, they agreed to wait until their meeting May 31st before taking action on a fireworks sales/discharge ordinance so that County Attorney Dave Wiederstein can gather more information.

The Board passed a Resolution authorizing a request for bids with regard to the Glacier, Buck Creek and Echo Roads paving project. Snyder and Associates Engineer Dave Sturm explained the process is moving forward now that the DOT has finally provided comments with regard to the plans and specifications for the project.

A request for bids is being sent out today (Friday), with the bids to be received no later than 3-p.m. June 15th. Action will be taken on the bids at 8:30-a.m. on June 21st. The Resolution also sets the Public Hearing on the project for June 21st. The Board also approved a Federal Aid Agreement for a bridge replacement project on North Olive Street (County Road N-16). County Engineer Charles Bechtold said the bridge (#433) is located about a mile south of Interstate 80.

The bridge is being torn down and replaced to be wider, stronger and to better, accommodate ethanol plant traffic. The project will cost $600,000.  In their final order of business, the Cass County Supervisors approved plans for two bridge replacement projects, #25 – which is located on Tucson Road, south of Cumberland, and #342 – located north of Lewis on Lansing Road. Requests for bids will be sent out, with the return dates August 15th and Sept. 19th for the respective projects.

Bechtold said the Feds will pay 80 percent of the cost of both projects, with 20 percent coming from the Farm-to-Market road funds, so the County is not paying for anything “out of pocket.”

(Podcast) KJAN 8-a.m. News, 5/26/2017

News, Podcasts

May 26th, 2017 by Ric Hanson

More area and State news from KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.

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