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Sentencing delayed for Pott. County man convicted of kidnapping

News

June 7th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A Pottawattamie County man convicted in May on 1st and 2nd degree kidnapping charges has had his sentencing delayed until mid-August. The Omaha World-Herald says 39-year old Bryan Bey, of Crescent, was supposed to have been sentenced yesterday (Thursday), but his court-appointed attorney filed for a continuance in the case. Sentencing was then rescheduled to August 9th.

Bey was convicted on of first- and second-degree kidnapping in the May 2012 beating and abduction of 30-year old Tabitha Proplesch. Proplesch was found severely beaten, nearly unconscious and handcuffed in the cab of the truck that had run out of gas.

“Devastating” virus found in Iowa swine herds

Ag/Outdoor, News

June 7th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Tests have confirmed a “devastating” virus has struck swine herds in eight states, including Iowa. The National Pork Producers Council is committing 410-thousand dollars to research aimed at combating the disease. The virus — known as P-E-D-V — is not transmitted to humans and is not considered a threat to food safety, but the vomiting, diarrhea and dehydration it causes can kill up to 90 percent of baby pigs in a herd. Dr. Howard Hill, a veterinarian, is the president-elect of the National Pork Producers Council. “For the individual farm that’s gotten infected, it’s quite devastating,” Hill says. The virus has been found in much of Europe and in China, but this is the first time it has been discovered in the western hemisphere.

“It doesn’t look like the disease has been here very long,” Hill says. Diagnostic labs at Iowa State University and the University of Minnesota have confirmed 103 cases of the virus. “Unfortunately, the scope seems to be getting bigger,” Hill says. “…We know there’s a lot more cases than that.” Besides Iowa, tests have confirmed the virus is present in swine herds in Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Oklahoma and Colorado. There is no vaccine available for the virus today, although Hill says a lab plans to start testing a vaccine late this summer.

“There’s some procedures that veterinarians have in place to try to get over the disease as quick as possible,” Hill says. “But the big thing we need to stress is biosecurity and that biosecurity would be everything from transportation, making sure trucks are in the right flow — washing, disinfecting, drying; same with facilities; same with making sure that maintenance people and all your employees are doing what they’re supposed to be doing.” Some “good, hot days” in Iowa could kill the virus, according to Hill. Hill works for Iowa Select Farms, an Iowa Falls-based pork operation that employs over 900 people in 43 Iowa counties.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa early News Headlines: Friday, June 7th 2013

News

June 7th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — A John Deere plant in Dubuque has laid off 65 employees in its manufacturing section. Waterloo television station KWWL reportsthe employees at John Deere Dubuque Works were notified yesterday. The layoffs are effective June 24th. John Deere spokesman Ken Golden says the layoffs were according to seniority.

CARROLL, Iowa (AP) — Funeral services are being held this afternoon for James Wilson, the publisher of western Iowa’s Carroll Daily Times Herald newspaper for 36 years. Services begin today at 3 p.m. at First United Methodist Church in Carroll.

OSCEOLA, Iowa (AP) — The board that regulates gambling in Iowa is accepting applications for a proposed casino in Cedar Rapids through September 3rd. Voters in Linn County approved a gambling referendum in March and developers are proposing to build a $100 million casino. The five-member Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission also will hire a consultant to conduct a statewide market study to look at the impact of adding casinos in Iowa.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Michael Annett has always cherished racing at his hometown track in Des Moines, Iowa. Annett’s latest trip to Iowa Speedway will mark a major milestone in his comeback from a gruesome injury. When the NASCAR Nationwide series runs in Iowa tomorrow night, the 26-year-old Annett will race for just the third time since fracturing and dislocating his sternum in February.

NORTHEY: HORSE OWNERS ENCOURAGED TO VACCINATE AGAINST WEST NILE VIRUS

Ag/Outdoor, News

June 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey today encouraged horse owners to protect their animals from the West Nile virus by making sure their horses are vaccinated and that the vaccination is up-to-date. The first year of vaccination requires two vaccinations to be protective for horses and then annual boosters in following years.

“As we enter mosquito season it is important for horse owners to vaccinate their animals so that they are protected from West Nile virus,” Northey said. “I encourage owners to talk to their veterinarian about vaccination and make sure all their animals’ vaccinations are up-to-date.”

In 2012 Iowa had 36 confirmed West Nile virus cases in horses last year and in most cases the animals had not had any vaccinations and in a few of these cases only had their first dose of vaccine. Iowa had only one confirmed case in a horse in 2011. West Nile virus has been in the U.S. since 1999, and while it is primarily a disease of birds it can infect horses, dogs, humans, and several other animal species.

It is transmitted by the bite of an infected mosquito. Most animals and humans do not show clinical signs of being infected, but horses may develop a brain infection with signs such as lethargy, weakness, incoordination/staggering, paralysis or even death.

Horse owners are encouraged to contact their veterinarian for more information and to discuss vaccination and other preventions measures, such as mosquito control.

Levin found guilty of 1st degree murder

News

June 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

FORT DODGE, Iowa (AP) — A jury has returned a guilty verdict in the trial of a northwest Iowa man accused of killing his mother and kidnapping another woman. The Messenger in Fort Dodge reports a Webster County jury on Thursday convicted 21-year-old Kirk Levin of first-degree murder in the death of his mother, Marilyn Schmitt. He also was found guilty of third-degree kidnapping in the case of Jessica Vega, a woman he met online. Jurors deliberated for about two hours. Sentencing is scheduled for July.

Charles Kenville, Levin’s attorney, had argued the state failed to prove Schmitt’s death was premeditated. Assistant Iowa Attorney General Doug Hammerand said it was an intentional act. Levin’s trial began Tuesday, and included testimony from Vega and a law enforcement official who later found Schmitt’s body.

Closing arguments begin in Iowa slaying trial

News

June 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

FORT DODGE, Iowa (AP) – Closing arguments have begun in the case of a northwest Iowa man accused of killing his mother and kidnapping another woman.  The Messenger in Fort Dodge reports attorneys gave closing arguments Thursday in Webster County. Both sides finished presenting evidence Wednesday. Kirk Levin, of Early, is charged with first-degree murder in the January death of Marilyn Schmitt. He also faces third-degree kidnapping for allegedly abducting 21-year-old Jessica Vega, a woman he met online.

Jurors have heard testimony for several days, including from Vega and a law enforcement official who later found Schmitt’s body. On Wednesday, prosecutors showed two videotaped interviews where Levin confessed to killing his mother and kidnapping Vega but also denied it.    Levin declined to testify on his own behalf.

Mo. university offers tuition break for neighbors

News

June 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) – Missouri Western State University is offering the equivalent of in-state tuition to students from 51 selected counties in Iowa, Illinois, Kansas and Nebraska, potentially saving them $6,000 per year. The university says its “Griffon Rate” will be in effect this fall. It applies to both undergraduate and graduate tuition, for new and current students. 

Undergraduates taking classes on the main campus in St. Joseph will save about $200 per credit hour. Regular tuition for out-of-state students is $392 per credit hour. The “Griffon Rate” will be roughly $192 per credit hour. Missouri Western says it also will continue to offer scholarships for out-of-state students who meet academic requirements, but the “Griffon Rate” can’t be used in conjunction with them.

Sequester hits Iowa National Guard; 1100 to be furloughed one day per week

News

June 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

About 11-hundred “military federal technicians” who are part of the Iowa National Guard soon will be furloughed one day a week for 11 consecutive weeks, because of the so-called “sequester” cuts in the federal budget. Colonel Greg Hapgood, a spokesman for the Iowa Guard, is one of the employees who will be going without pay for 11 days over those 11 weeks. “A federal technician is in some respects a federal civilian employee Monday through Friday, but they’re also a military member of the Iowa National Guard, for the most part,” Hapgood says. “We do have some that are purely civilian federal technicians, but the vast majority are what we would call dual-status technicians that are both a member of the Iowa National Guard and work for the federal government, for the Department of Defense.”  

The furloughs for those 11-hundred Iowa Guard personnel start July 8th and will end September 30th, which is the last day of the current federal fiscal year. “The 1100 that will be furloughed, the vast majority of those will be either between the headquarters of the Iowa National Guard and also at our Air National Guard units which have a number of technicians in Sioux City, Fort Dodge and also here in Des Moines,” Hapgood says. “But it will be felt in all four corners of the state.” The Iowa Guard has facilities in 43 Iowa communities.”The furloughs will affect, roughly, less than 10 percent of our force, but it will make some of our processes more time-consuming,” Hapgood says. “Things may be slower than usual, whether it’s acquiring logistics or doing personnel actions or the wide variety of things we do with our federal technicians.”  

Hapgood says the Guard will be prepared to deploy whenever activated, regardless of the furloughs. “The Iowa National Guard, though hindered by these furloughs, we still will be able to maintain readiness to the best possible degree and also respond to the state in a timely manner.” The Iowa National Guard dates back to Iowa’s territorial days, with Iowa Militia units forming in 1846 to help fight on the U.S. side in the Mexican War.

(Radio Iowa)

New podiatrist joins Miller Orthopedic

News

June 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Officials with Miller Orthopedic Specialists in Omaha have announced a new physician has joined their staff. Bradley B. Copple, DPM, has joined Dr. Inderjit S. Panesar to create a Podiatry team which will serve the Omaha/Council Bluffs area. Copple is an Omaha native who practiced with Methodist Hospital’s Foot and Ankle Center/Dept. of Orthopedics for four-years, before joining Miller Orthopedic Specialists.

With the latest addition of Dr. Copple, Miller Ortho now has five orthopedic surgeons, a hand and vascular surgeon, and now, two podiatrists who will diagnose and treat patients with pain and conditions related to bones, joints, muscles and tendons.

For more information, or to schedule an appointment, call 402-991-9958, or visit www.millerortho.com.

4 arrests in Atlantic

News

June 6th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Police Department reports an Audubon County man was arrested today (Thursday) on a warrant out of Shelby County.  38-year old Christopher Snyder, of Audubon, was arrested on a warrant charging him with 5th degree theft. Snyder was brought to the Cass County Jail and turned over to Shelby County deputies for transportation to the jail in Harlan. Also arrested this (Thursday) morning, was 62-year old Thomas Harrelson, of Atlantic. The A-PD says Harrelson was taken into custody for Interference with Official Acts. He was booked into the Cass County Jail and held pending an initial court appearance.

On Wednesday, police in Atlantic arrested 26-year old Jared Joyce, of Atlantic, and 24-year old Jay Pedrin, of Audubon. Both men were charged with Simple Assault and booked into the Cass County Jail.

(9-a.m. News)