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Omaha man convicted of several conspiracies

News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) – Federal prosecutors say a 48-year-old Omaha man has been convicted of conspiracies to launder money and sell controlled substances, among other crimes in Nebraska and Iowa.
John Ways Jr. was found guilty on Wednesday after a 13-day trial in U.S. District Court in Omaha.

Prosecutors say that from February 2010 to December 2012, Ways operated head shops in Nebraska and Iowa called Exotica. Among other things, the stores sold drug paraphernalia and controlled substances that included synthetic drugs such as K2 and bath salts. Prosecutors say Ways laundered the proceeds from the sales through transactions at various banks and credit unions in the Omaha area.

He faces up to 55 years in prison and must forfeit more than $1.1 million in cash and property.

Pacific Junction man arrested for Criminal Mischief

News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Mills County Sheriff’s Office reports 46-year old Timothy John Konfrst, of Pacific Junction, was arrested Thursday (today), on a warrant for Criminal Mischief in the 1st degree. Konfrst was arrested at around 5:10-a.m. in Pacific Junction. He was being held in the Mills County Jail on $5,000 bond.

Woman arrested for misappropriation of funds from Malvern Library

News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Mills County Attorney Eric Hansen reports a woman who formerly served as a librarian for the Malvern Public Library, was arrested for misappropriation of funds. A warrant was issued Wednesday for 41-year old Stacey Buick, for felony Ongoing Criminal Conduct and 1st degree Theft. If convicted, Buick faces up to 35-year in prison.

Authorities say Buick allegedly misappropriated over $20,000 from the Malvern Library while she was employed there, from July 1st, 2006 to October 31st, 2013.

The Mills County Sheriff’s Office was assisted in its investigation by the State Auditor’s Office. The State Auditor’s Office investigated the records of the Malvern Library finding the misappropriation by Buick, who allegedly used altered receipts, primarily. The State Auditor’s report may be found on their website.

Buick was seen by the Magistrate and was released. Her preliminary hearing will take place September 17th. She will be represented in court by Attorney Mark Rater, of Council Bluffs.

Clarinda Police make early morning arrest

News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Police in Clarinda report a College Springs woman was arrested this (Thursday) morning on burglary, theft and tampering charges. At around 12:40-a.m., officers responded to a report of vehicles being broken into at the Maplewood Trailer Court. As a result of an investigation, Clarinda Police arrested 20-year old Torri Grace Perry.

Perry was arrested on complaints of burglary of a motor vehicle, theft of items valued between $200-500, and unlawful tampering with a motor vehicle. She was taken into custody without incident and booked into the Page County Jail. Perry was being held on $3,000 bond, pending an appearance before the Page County Magistrate Court.

Reports have been forwarded to the Page County Attorney’s Office for review regarding the filing of formal charges.

IRS Scam surfaces in Cass County

News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office is warning the public about a current scam. Officials say a person claiming to be from the IRS is calling people and telling them they have outstanding tax debt and that they must immediately go to a convenience store and load money on a Green Dot card to pay this debt. The scammer claimed his name was “Sam Thomas,” and had a middle-eastern accent. Authorties warn THIS IS A SCAM. Simply hang up the phone.

Earlier this month, the IRS reported the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) had received 90,000 complaints through its telephone hotline. To date, TIGTA has identified approximately 1,100 victims who have lost an estimated $5 million from these types of scams.

As a taxpayer, it is important for you to know that the IRS:

  • Never asks for credit card, debit card or prepaid card information over the telephone.
  • Never insists that taxpayers use a specific payment method to pay tax obligations
  • Never requests immediate payment over the telephone and will not take enforcement action immediately following a phone conversation. Taxpayers usually receive prior notification of IRS enforcement action involving IRS tax liens or levies.

If you get a phone call from someone claiming to be from the IRS, here’s what you should do:

  • If you know you owe taxes or you think you might owe taxes, call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040. The IRS employees at that line can help you with a payment issue, if there really is such an issue.
  • If you know you don’t owe taxes or have no reason to think that you owe any taxes (for example, you’ve never received a bill or the caller made some bogus threats as described above), then call and report the incident to TIGTA at 1-800-366-4484.
  • If you’ve been targeted by this scam, you should also contact the Federal Trade Commission and use their “FTC Complaint Assistant” at FTC.gov. Add “IRS Telephone Scam” to the comments of your complaint.

Taxpayers should be aware that there are other unrelated scams (such as a lottery sweepstakes) and solicitations (such as debt relief) that fraudulently claim to be from the IRS.

Red Oak man arrested for Operating a vehicle w/out consent

News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Police in Red Oak say a local man was arrested this (Thursday) morning for operating a motor vehicle without the owner’s consent. 52-year old Randall Ray Talbott, of Red Oak, was taken into custody at around 8:15-a.m. at the Pottawattamie County Jail, and held on $2,000 bond.

Bayard woman arrested on numerous charges in Audubon Co.

News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Audubon County report a Bayard woman was arrested on numerous charges early this (Thursday) morning, following a traffic stop on Highway 44 near Lark Avenue. The Sheriff’s Department says 43-year old Ruth Ann Abernathy was charged with Driving While Revoked for an OWI.

The woman also had an outstanding warrant out of Audubon County, and faces charges of OWI/Drug related, Possession of Methamphetamine, Possession of Marijuana/2nd offense, and Possession of drug paraphernalia. Those charges stem from an investigation into an accident that occurred on August 2nd on 190th Street near Nighthawk Avenue.

Abernathy was brought to the Audubon County Jail and later appeared before a magistrate before being released from custody.

Slauson faces additional charges in cancer fundraising scam

News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

An Atlantic woman charged last week in connection with a fundraising scam involving her 5-year old daughter, faces additional charges. 30-year old Leatha Slausen, who initially faced a single felony count Child Endangerment Causing Bodily Injury, and Distribution of drugs (cannabis oil) to a child under the age of 18, now faces another count of child endangerment causing bodily injury, and 10-counts of Unlawful Possession of a Prescription Drug (Neupogen). The additional charges were filed Wednesday by Atlantic Police, in Cass County District Court.

Court documents show Slauson admitted to injecting her five-year-old daughter Riley with Neupogen well as treating her with cannabis oil. The Neupogen was apparently obtained by the girls’ mother from someone other than a physician. Neupogen is used to stimulate the production of a type of white blood cell in patients undergoing therapy that will cause low white blood cell counts. It’s used to prevent infection and neutropenic (low white blood cells) fevers caused by chemotherapy and is a support medication only. It does not treat cancer. The drug, which is only supposed to be given under doctor’s orders, can cause pain in a person’s body.

Slauson solicited money and attention for her daughter’s supposed Metastatic Colorectal Cancer treatment, but an investigation initiated after officials with the Atlantic Community Schools inquired about care Riley needed as she attends classes, resulted in the discovery by law enforcement that the girl wasn’t suffering from cancer or any other terminal illness. A feeding tube administered to Riley by Leatha Slauson without any medical training, has been taken into evidence.

It’s not the first time the Slauson’s have requested help involving the health of their children. Prior to moving to Atlantic, family lived in Fort Dodge. A number of fundraisers were held there as well, including one last year in downtown Fort Dodge that raised over $1,000 for health care equipment for the Slauson’s son Cole, who was born premature, and another son who is reportedly autistic. They are also said to have two daughters who suffered from cystic fibrosis. In 2010, the community of Ft. Dodge raised money for the family to acquire an autism service dog.

Leatha Slauson was being held in the Cass County Jail on bond amounting to $30,000. She’s set to appear in court on Sept. 2nd for her preliminary hearing.

AAA: Expect a boost in travelers on the road for Labor Day

News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The last holiday weekend of summer is just ahead and more Iowans are expected to be on the road this Labor Day compared to last year. Rose White, at Triple-A Iowa, says holiday travel should be picking up nationwide. “Across the country, we’re expecting that travel will be up about 1.3% from last year with about 34.7 million Americans taking trips 50 miles or more away from home,” White says. “In fact, this will be the highest level of Labor Day travel that we’ve seen in 6 years.” Most people who are taking trips for the holiday will be traveling by car, about 86-percent, according to the motor club’s survey.

“If you are traveling by car, you will see some lower fuel prices that will help make the trip more affordable,” White says. “Some will see the lowest prices for this holiday weekend since 2010. Although we did see an increase in the Midwest fuel prices over the last few weeks, they are now on a downturn.” U-S oil production is at a record high level, and since the winter-grade fuel is cheaper to produce, White says prices at the pump should continue to drop as we head into fall.

“In Iowa, prices right now are below the national average,” White says. “In Iowa, you can expect to pay about $3.33 for self-serve unleaded, a year ago, that price was at $3.52.” The survey finds Iowa’s most expensive gas is in Des Moines at 3-36 a gallon, while it’s cheapest in Sioux City at 3-22.

(Radio Iowa)

Final day of Farm Progress Show cancelled due to lightning

Ag/Outdoor, News

August 28th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Foul weather is forcing the cancellation of the final day of one of the nation’s biggest agricultural exhibitions, what’s considered the World’s Fair of everything farm-related. Dena Morgan, spokeswoman for the Farm Progress Show in Boone, says it’s a huge disappointment, but the show will -not- go on today (Thursday) and it’s now closed for the year.

“We’re not going to open,” Morgan says. “It was raining this morning and it was forecast that there was lightning coming through, so we decided to close the show for everyone’s safety.” The show opened Tuesday. Organizers have 600 vendors on the grounds and had been expecting up to 150-thousand visitors over the three-day run.

(Radio Iowa)