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A digital Iowa driver’s license under development

News

December 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

State officials are drafting plans for digital driver’s licenses, so you could show your photo I-D by pulling out your smart phone. Iowa Department of Transportation director Paul Trombino showed a mock-up to the governor and his aides on Monday. “This is a digitally-encoded drivers license. It’s on your cellphone, so you can carry it around with you,” Trombino said. “It has as much, if not more, digital encoding than the one in your wallet.”

Trombino says it could be used at a traffic stop, at the airport or anywhere else you’re asked to show identification.  “It really opens up the doorway, I think, for a lot of different types of transactions,” Trombino says.

Trombino expects the digital license would be available to motorists in addition to that small, plastic version for your wallet, at no additional charge. Some motorists are already showing proof of insurance with an app on their smart phones.

(Radio Iowa)

Corning woman arrested for Probation Violation

News

December 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Police in Creston, Monday, arrested a woman from Adams County on a Union County warrant for Probation Violation. Authorities say 30-year old Tara Anne Squibb, of Corning, was arrested at around 9:40-p.m. and was being held in the Ringgold County Jail, pending an appearance before a magistrate.

(Podcast) KJAN morning News, Tue., 12/9/2014

News, Podcasts

December 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A podcast of the 7:07-a.m. Newscast with KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.

Play

CO man arrested in Adams County

News

December 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A traffic stop late Monday evening in Adams County resulted in the arrest of a Colorado man. Sheriff’s officials say 51-year old Jeffrey Wayne Armstrong, of Loveland, CO, was pulled over at around 5:30-p.m. near the intersection of Highway 34 and Loomis Avenue. A deputy smelled alcohol coming from Armstrong, who failed Field Sobriety Tests and was placed under arrest for OWI/1st Offense. His bond was set at $1,000.

Survey shows 94% of Iowa companies plan to maintain or increase workforces between January-March

News

December 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Most employers in Iowa are optimistic about their hiring plans for the first three months of 2015. That’s according the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey released today (Tuesday). Manpower spokesperson Karen Miller says 73-percent of the Iowa companies surveyed anticipate maintaining current staffing levels between January and March, while 21-percent expect to add employees. That’s good for a “Net Employment Outlook” of 16-percent — doubling the results from the survey conducted for the first quarter of 2014.

“Last year at this time, we were only looking at an 8-percent Net Employment Outlook,” Miller said. The companies that take part in the Manpower survey have been holding steady on their hiring plans for quite some time now. “I think this is our third year running, we’ve got about 12 straight quarters of really solid hiring within the state of Iowa,” Miller said.

Iowa’s job market is basically on par with the nationwide outlook. Of the more than 18,000 employers surveyed in the U.S., Manpower found 19-percent expect to add to their workforces, while 6-percent expect a decline in their payrolls between October and December. The Net Employment Outlook nationwide is 16-percent, the same as Iowa’s Q1 figure.

(Radio Iowa)

Investigators looking for clues in death of cattle in Woodbury County

Ag/Outdoor, News

December 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in northwest Iowa’s Woodbury County are investigating the mysterious death of 17 head of cattle this weekend. Lieutenant Charles Hertz of the Woodbury County Sheriff’s Office, says the cattle were discovered by a creek near Lawton around 1:30 Saturday afternoon. He says the cattle owner was checking on the animals and discovered 17 cattle in the creek dead, while there were 13 others nearby that were just fine. Hertz says the were no marks on the animals or anything else to indicate why they died.

“We had checked the creek to determine if there were any other deaths associated with these cattle and we could not determine anything. There were no fish that were killed or any other livestock or animals in the area that had been killed,” Hertz says. “The state vet did a field autopsy at the scene, and there was nothing readily apparent.” He says the county emergency manager took water samples.

“And found everything to be in normal parameters. These samples are going to be forwarded to Storm Lake to have further tests done on them. The state vet also took samples from these animals and there will be further tests conducted,” according to Hertz. Hertz says there are not indications of criminal activity as they continue to investigate looking for the cause of the death of the animals.

(Radio Iowa)

Judge orders Metzker-Madsen committed to a psych unit

News

December 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

A western Iowa teen found not guilty by reason of insanity in the death of his foster brother poses “a great danger to others” and will need lifelong monitoring “to help minimize his risk to the public and to himself,” according to a judge’s order. The Daily NonPareil reports the order commits 18-year old Cody Metzker-Madsen to a psychiatric unit within the Iowa Department of Corrections for an indefinite period of time. Metzker-Madsen killed 5-year-old Dominic Elkins, of Atlantic, as the two played outside at a foster home north of Logan, in Harrison County.

Dominic’s body was found in a wooded ravine with a stream. An autopsy determined that he died from blunt force head injuries and drowning.  The two boys had been staying at the home of foster parents Don and Julie Coolman, who were not home at the time.

During his seven-day trial in late October and early November, Metzker-Madsen testified that he remembered killing a goblin with a brick while in a fantasy world. He said he didn’t realize until later that it was Dominic whom he had killed.  Metzker-Madsen’s mother also testified that she used methamphetamine during her first three months of pregnancy.

On Nov. 7th, District Judge Kathleen Kilnoski found Metzker-Madsen not guilty of first-degree murder by reason of insanity. She ordered him committed to the Iowa Medical and Classification Center at Oakdale and ordered the chief medical officer there to report to her a diagnosis and also an opinion on whether Metzker-Madsen was a threat to others. The report was not made public. But Kilnoski’s order, filed Thursday, quotes from it.

Metzker-Madsen’s provisional diagnoses include oppositional defiant disorder, intermittent explosive disorder, psychotic disorder not otherwise specified and personality disorder not otherwise specified, with anti-social traits. The order describes him as having “borderline intellectual functioning.”

According to the judge’s order, Metzker-Madsen “poses a great danger to others, and indirectly to himself, because of his limited functioning and mood instability. The evaluating psychiatrist said it was her opinion that the defendant requires ‘continued long-term placement in a highly structured and secure environment. … (H)e will need lifelong monitoring and structure to help minimize his risk to the public and to himself.’ ” The judge concluded that Metzker-Madsen is “seriously mentally ill and dangerous to himself and others.”  She ordered him committed to the Iowa Department of Corrections for placement at the Forensic Psychiatric Hospital at Oakdale.

Robert Rigg, director of the criminal defense program at Drake University Law School in Des Moines, said Metzker-Madsen will probably never be released, unless some way is found to successfully treat him. Last month Dominic’s mother, Barbara Kunch, withdrew a lawsuit that she had filed in October accusing Don and Julie Coolman of failing to properly care for and supervise Dominic and Metzker-Madsen. Court documents did not list a reason why.

Iowa early News Headlines: Tue., Dec. 9 2014

News

December 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — The University of Iowa says a student has reported a sexual assault on campus. The school says police received a report on Saturday about an incident at a residence hall on Friday. A female student says an unknown person sexually assaulted her. Additional details were not available. The school released the information in accordance with a federal disclosure law.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Des Moines officials have postponed plans for a new city ordinance aimed at regulating the ridesharing service Uber. The City Council pushed back a vote to January that would spell out how Uber should conduct business in Des Moines. Council members said they wanted more time to research the issue. Uber launched in Des Moines in September, despite warnings from officials that the company was violating city ordinances.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — An Iowa venue says a Bill Cosby performance scheduled for next year has been postponed indefinitely. The Des Moines Civic Center says it notified ticketholders that they will receive a refund for the planned March 7 concert. Cosby stage shows have been canceled in several other states. The actions follow renewed allegations by women claiming decades-old sexual assaults by the 77-year-old comedian. Cosby has denied the allegations.

FORT DODGE, Iowa (AP) — Trial has begun for a Georgia man charged with killing his former roommate in Iowa. Jury selection began in the trial of 55-year-old John Green. He faces a first-degree murder charge in the death of Mark Koster, of Sac City. Green has pleaded not guilty. Koster’s skeletal remains were found buried in the basement of his house in 2012. The new homeowners found them while renovating the basement.

Adams County man arrested on drug charge

News

December 8th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

An Adams County Sheriff’s Deputy serving civil papers on a man in Corning late Monday morning, ended-up arresting the man on a drug charge. Sheriff’s officials say 59-year old James Robert Brown, of Corning, was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia, after the deputy noticed a strong odor of marijuana in the home at 302 11th Street.

An investigation revealed a grinder located on a coffee table in the home contained a green leafy substance inside. Brown was being held in the Adams County Jail on $300 bond.

Drake Appointed Budget Chair

News

December 8th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

(DES MOINES) – House Speaker Kraig Paulsen (R-Hiawatha) recently announced that Rep. Jack Drake (R-Griswold) will serve as the chairman of the House Agriculture and Natural Resources budget committee. Rep. Drake is an experienced leader who will work to control government spending
while also funding Iowans’ agriculture priorities,” said Speaker Paulsen.

Drake was also appointed to the following committees: Agriculture, Appropriations, State Government and International Relations. The legislative session begins January 12, 2015.