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Tuesday News, August 19

December Trial Set For Neunaber

(Le Mars) -- A trial date has been set for an Akron, Iowa man accused of first degree murder in the death of his mother.  44 year old Jonathan Neunaber is scheduled to go to trial on December 9th in Plymouth County District Court.  Neunaber is accused of killing his mother, Esther Neunaber.  Her body and that of her husban, Donald Neunaber, were found in their rural Akron home on July 9th.     
     The cause of deaath of Neunaber's father has yet to be released and no charges have been filed regarding his death.   Jonathan Neunaber is being held in the Plymouth County Jail on a $100,000 bond.    

 

County Supervisors To Hear About Hinton Trail Of Flags

(Le Mars) -- The Plymouth County Board of Supervisors will hear a report from Becky Vermilyea and Nancy Smith of the Hinton Beautification Committee today when they convene for their weekly meeting at the Courthouse Boardroom.  The two ladies are expected to discuss the Hinton Trail of Flags and ask the Board of Supervisors for a letter of support.  The supervisors will also hear from County engineer Tom Rohe as he updates the county governing board on construction projects.  A portion of today's discussion will focus on the Tax Increment Financing or TIF projects.

 

City Council Scheduled To Meet Today

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars City Council is scheduled to meet today at noon at the city hall council chambers.  The city council will begin the meeting with a public hearing regarding the final zoning and plat approval for Cresent Ridge.  Other business will focus on the Community Development Building Grant for the downtown facade program. The council is expected to discuss the North Greenview estates, and the city council will hold its second reading of the proposed ordinance to amend the speed limit on Business Highway 75.  The council will also address a request for a stop sign.

 

Gehlen Catholic Welcomes Three New Teachers

(Le Mars) -- School is scheduled to start on Thursday, and both Gehlen Catholic and Le Mars Community will be welcoming new faculty and staff to the schools.  At Gehlen Catholic, there will be three new teachers.  Gehlen Catholic is starting off the 2014-2015 school year with three new faces. This year, we are glad to welcome to Mrs. Amanda (Stoll) Christoffel, Mr. Nathan Sexe, and Ms. Maggie Vander Stelt. 

Mrs. Amanda (Stoll) Christoffel will be teaching 7th and 8th grade math and 7th grade religion.  She is also the head of the Junior High Student Council and Math Clubs.  Mrs. Christoffel grew up in Granville and graduated from Spalding Catholic High School in 2007. Mrs. Christoffel attended Iowa Central Community College and received her Associates of Art degree before transferring to the University of Northern Iowa. In the fall of 2011, she graduated with a degree in Elementary and Middle School Education with a Minor in Math and Social Studies. Mrs. Christoffel and her husband, Jordan (a 2008 Spalding Catholic graduate) reside in Alton.  Mr. Christoffel works in the sales at ICON Ag & Turf in Doon,

Mr. Nathan Sexe will teach 5th and 6th grade science and coach the junior high baseball team.  Mr. Sexe is a 2010 graduate of Humboldt High School and a 2014 graduate of Northwestern College.  His degree is in Elementary Education with endorsements in Middle School Math and Science.  Mr. Sexe student taught 5th grade science at Sheldon Community School and 6th grade Math at MOC-FV.  Mr. Sexe is the oldest of four children.  His father, Mike, manages the EMS Department at Humboldt Hospital.  His mother, Cherese, is the Emergency-911 Coordinator for Humboldt County.  He has a younger brother at Northwestern College and two younger siblings at home.  
 
Ms. Maggie Vander Stelt, originally from Maurice, Iowa, attended MOC-FV High School in Orange City.   Ms. Vander Stelt graduated from MOC-FV in 2010 and continued her education at Morningside College where she graduated with a degree in Spanish Teaching in 2014. She will be teaching High School Spanish 1-4. Ms. Vander Stelt’s mother teaches at MOC-FV and her father works at Diamond Vogel.

 

O'Brien County Manure Spill Causes Fish Kill

 PAULINA, Iowa (AP) - The Department of Natural Resources says a manure spill at a northwest Iowa dairy has likely caused the death of thousands of fish.
     The DNR announced Monday that the spill at Summit Dairy near Paulina apparently happened Friday during a rainstorm. On Saturday, a citizen reported seeing dead fish in Mill Creek.
     The DNR responded and dug a trench that redirected the manure to a field.
     On Sunday, DNR staffers noted many dead fish, including suckers, minnows, darters, shiners, a few catfish and a few small largemouth bass. 
     The DNR says it's likely the dead fish will number in the thousands along a one-mile stretch of an unnamed tributary and a five-mile-or-longer section of Mill Creek.
     The DNR is continuing to investigate the incident.

 

Clean Water Regulations Rules To Be Reviewed

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The commission that oversees water quality regulations in Iowa is considering adoption of rules that align state regulations with those imposed by the federal Clean Water Act. 
     The Environmental Protection Commission's proposed rules primarily give the Iowa Department of Natural Resources authority to issue permits that regulate manure handling for livestock farms shown to discharge manure into waterways. 
     Permits aren't required, however, and environmental groups say the rules are too weak and too friendly to livestock farms.
     Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement wants all farms with spills to be required to get a permit. The group also wants five members of the nine-member, governor-appointed commission to abstain from voting because they have financial interests in livestock farming.
     A vote on the rules is scheduled for Tuesday morning.

 

Iowa Supreme Court To Go On The Road 

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Supreme Court will hear oral arguments in special sessions at four locations across the state during its upcoming term.
     The Des Moines-based court said Monday that justices will travel to hear arguments next month in Iowa City, to Storm Lake in October, to Creston in March and Decorah in April. 
     The visits build on an outreach campaign that Chief Justice Mark Cady instituted after three justices were ousted by voters following the court's decision to legalize gay marriage in 2009.
     In a statement, Cady says the court has visited 13 communities for oral arguments and public receptions in the last three years. He says the visits give justices "a tremendous, first-hand insight into what Iowans expect from their court system now and into the future."

 

Trial Date Delayed For Iowa State University Researcher Accused Of False Documents

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A judge has ordered a delay in the trial of a former Iowa State University researcher charged with falsifying data to make a developmental AIDS vaccine appear promising.
     The Sept. 2 trial for Dong-Pyou Han is scheduled for Sept. 29 after a judge approved a delay Monday.
      Han pleaded not guilty in federal court to four counts of making false statements in research reports.
     He is free on bond.
     His attorney, Joseph Herrold, a federal public defender asked the court for the delay. He says case research is time consuming and Han requires a Korean translator.
     He says more time is needed to investigate the case and determine whether it will proceed to trial "or be resolved in another manner."
     Federal prosecutors did not resist the motion to delay.

 

A Million People Attended State Fair

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - More than 1 million people went to the Iowa State Fair this year, but attendance was down.
     Fair spokeswoman Lori Chappell says that preliminary records show nearly 1,016,000 people attended the fair during its 11-day run. The fair ended Sunday.
     It's the lowest attendance since 2010, when just over 967,000 people went to the fair.
     About 30,000 more people went to the fair in 2013 than this year. The largest attendance in fair history was about 1.1 million people in 2008.
     Chappell says rainy weather on the first day of the fair probably hurt some attendance. She added officials will study the attendance numbers to keep track of any trends.
     ---

 

Iowa Falls Man Sentenced To Life For Killing 7 Month Old Baby

 WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa Falls man has been sentenced to life in prison for killing his 7-week-old baby girl.
      28-year-old Trevor Smith received life without parole Monday. That's the mandatory sentence for first-degree murder. The judge ordered Smith to pay $150,000 in restitution.
     He was also convicted in May of child endangerment. That charge was combined with the life term.
     Police found Aubriana Christian unresponsive in a Waterloo apartment in September 2012. She died Oct. 2. 2012, after being removed from life support.
     Smith told police he shook the child because she wouldn't stop crying. He also said he dropped her on a bed and let her fall onto a changing table.
     ---
 


 

 

 


   

Monday Afternoon News, August 18

Van Looses Wheel Causes Accident

(Le Mars) -- The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department along with the Le Mars Ambulance responded to an accident that happened on Saturday at about 11:20 a.m.   A van, driven by 57 year old Micheal Oldfield of Lake Lillian, Minnesota, was traveling southbound on U-S Highway 75 when its front wheel came off the vehicle, causing the van to go into the ditch and struck some large drainage rocks.  The accident happened at about mile marker 119, just south of Fedder's Marine and RV.  Fire fighters had to help the driver out of his vehicle as the steering wheel had pinned him.  The driver was taken to Floyd Valley Hospital.  Also responding to the scene were the Le Mars Police Department and the Plymouth County Sheriff's Office.

Counties Refuse To Hold Immigrants In Jail

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Officials at 22 Iowa county jails are refusing to accept requests from federal immigration authorities to hold people in jail without a court order.
     It has been common practice for Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers to ask jails to hold individuals suspected of not having proper immigration documentation. Some people have been held for days or weeks without charges filed against them.
     Increasingly county officials are declining in part because of lawsuits but also because they're not paid to hold the individuals.
     The American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa says 22 counties refusing to honor immigration detainers include Iowa's most populous cities. Cedar Rapids, Council Bluffs, Des Moines, and Sioux City are among them.
     The counties say they now require a judge's approval of a warrant before they'll hold someone.

 

Iowa's Unemployment Rises Slightly

  DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A state agency says Iowa's unemployment rate rose slightly in July to 4.5 percent.
     The rate released Monday by Iowa Workforce Development was up from 4.4 percent in June. The number of unemployed Iowans was 76,900 in July, up from 74,300 in June.
     Iowa's unemployment rate is well below the national rate of 6.2 percent. And Iowa's rate is lower than it was a year ago when it came in at 4.8 percent.
     Gov. Terry Branstad pledged to create 200,000 new jobs in five years during his 2010 campaign. Since he took office in January of 2011, federal labor data shows the state has seen a net gain of 74,000 jobs.

 

Des Moines Homeless Evicted From Their Camps Along Rivers

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The deadline has arrived for homeless people to leave their camps along the Des Moines and Raccoon rivers in Des Moines.
     Earlier this month, an administrative law judge ruled that the city can legally evict homeless residents who received notices. The city plans to clean up the areas on Monday.
     The city has said the notices followed complaints from people who use bike paths in addition to concerns from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers regarding damage to levees. Council member Robert "Bob" Mahaffey says the city is trying to protect public property.
     The city plans to help residents of the camps access social services. The city also plans to hire a coordinator to work with the homeless.
     ---

 

Bill And Hillary Clinton To Appear At Harkin's Steak Fry

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Bill and Hillary Clinton will headline the annual steak fry for retiring Sen. Tom Harkin of Iowa, making a big return to the leadoff caucus state as the former secretary of state considers another presidential campaign.
     Sam Roecker, a spokesman for the Harkin Steak Fry, says Monday that both Clintons will speak at the fundraiser in Indianola, just south of Des Moines, on Sept. 14. It will be the former first lady's first appearance in Iowa since 2008. She is the leading Democratic presidential contender, and the event is among her first campaign appearances before the 2014 midterm elections.
     Clinton has said she intends to campaign for Democratic candidates this year. Iowa is the home of a key Senate race, and its presidential caucuses will begin the 2016 nomination process.

 

Iowa Mom Speaks Out About FDA's Tissue Donation Rules

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa mom is speaking out against the Food and Drug Administration's ban on donations of some tissue from gay men after her son died and some of his organs were rejected.
     Sheryl Moore of Pleasant Hill was told that some of her 16-year-old son's tissues wouldn't be donated because his sexual history was unclear. 
     Moore says the Iowa Donor Network accepted his heart, lungs and kidneys. But they wouldn't take other tissues, including bone, tendons and eyes.
     Moore's son, A.J. Betts, committed suicide last July. She says the refusal of his tissues floored her because she thinks the federal safeguards are archaic. 
     FDA regulations restrict certain tissue donations from men who have had sexual contact with other men within the past five years.
     ---

 

Boy Scouts Say Border Patrol Aimed A Gun At Them

 DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Federal officials say an allegation that a border officer drew and pointed a gun at a Boy Scout from Iowa appears to be unsubstantiated.
     The Department of Homeland Security's Office of Inspector General says security footage and interviews helped officials investigate the claim.
     The Iowa troop was stopped July 7 at the Alcan Port of Entry in Alaska. A scoutmaster later claimed some Scouts witnessed a Customs and Border Protection officer point a gun at a Boy Scout.
     Officers present denied drawing a weapon. Federal officials say officers searched one of the troop's vehicles after a personal camera used to take prohibited photos of the port indicated marijuana possession. The search turned up nothing.
     The Office of Inspector General says at least $19,000 was spent investigating the case.

 

Harlan Statue To Be Housed At Iowa Weslyan College

  DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A statue of former U.S. Sen. James Harlan will be officially unveiled at Iowa Wesleyan College.
     Gov. Terry Branstad says the statue will be unveiled on Aug. 28 at the college in Mount Pleasant. The statue previously had been on display at the U. S. Capitol's National Statuary Hall. 
     The Harlan statue was replaced in the Capitol by a statue of Norman Borlaug, who received the Nobel Prize in 1970 for boosting agricultural production and founded the World Food Prize.
     Harlan, a friend of President Abraham Lincoln, was president of the college in the mid-1800s before he was elected to the U.S. Senate. The bronze-cast statue, by Illinois sculptor Nellie V. Walker, had been in National Statuary Hall since 1910.

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
   

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