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Saturday News, April 18

Sioux City Teenager Dies After Smoking Synthetic Drugs

(Sioux City) -- A  Sioux City teenager is dead and three others were hospitalized after police say they became ill while smoking a synthetic drug Thursday night near War Eagle Park on the city's westside.  Detective Jeremy McClure of the Sioux City Police Department says emergency responders were called to the park entrance after receiving a 9-1-1 call about a sick person.

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Police say McCloud and the three other victims, ages 16-18, were found in a car together shortly after 11:00 p.m.  Detective McClure says the circumstances of the incident are still being investigated.

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The names of the other three victims are not being released, but McClure says they are students from West High School.  He says tests are underway to determine exactly what substances were being used by the four teens.

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McClure says the investigation is ongoing and other people are being interviewed regarding the incident.  No charges have been filed and police say they extend their condolences to McCloud's family.

 

 

 

Branstad To Visit Plymouth County

(Des Moines) -- Iowa Governor Terry Branstad has announced he will be in Plymouth County next Wednesday, April 22nd to officially proclaim Soil and Water Conservation Week.  Branstad will make the proclaimation on the Bob Puetz Farm located at 16175 Marble Avenue, Le Mars.  Branstad and Lt. Governor Kim Reynolds will make a northwest Iowa swing during the week of Tuesday, April 21st to Thursday, April 23rd.  In addition to visiting the Plymouth County farm, Branstad and Reynolds are scheduled to visit the Quad County Corn Processing Ethanol facility near Galva.  They will hold a Teacher Leadership Conference in Rock Valley, and tour several manufacturing facilities within northwest Iowa, as well as hold a Home Base Iowa announcement at the Orpheum Theater in Sioux City.

 

 

 

ICON Ag And Turf Helping With Local Backpack Programs

(Le Mars) -- A local farm equipment dealer is doing its part to combat child hunger in northwest Iowa. ICON Ag and Turf is donating money to the Le Mars BackPack program.  ICON Ag and Turf General Manager, Adam Timmerman says the employees of ICON were deeply and emotionally touched by a presentation by Brenda Nohava, the founder of the Le Mars BackPack program.

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Timmerman says ICON employees have the opportunity to donate to the program.  He says the company is doing a similar charitable contribution as they did a few years back when they initiated a donation program to fight breast cancer.

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Timmerman says The employee-driven monetary fundraiser will continue through April and May. He says several ICON employees are also volunteering their time to help pack the bags to be sent home with local children.  Has ICON Ag and Turf established a monetary goal for the backpack program?

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Each of the five ICON Ag and Turf locations are participating in the program with donations directed to local backpack programs close to each dealership.  Timmerman summarizes why the farm equipment company chose to help with a hunger program.

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Economic Development Board Approves Investment Incentives

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa board has approved nearly $16 million in investments in three companies across the state.

The Iowa Economic Development Authority announced the grants Friday for projects in Sioux City, West Des Moines and Knoxville. The board also approved an additional $19.8 million in tax refunds for Google Inc.'s Council Bluffs data center, bringing its total tax incentives to more than $36 million.

Curly's Foods, a Sioux City processed meats producer, has been awarded tax breaks for an expansion project expected to create 30 jobs.

Software developer FunnelWise is slated to receive $150,000 in direct financial assistance for a move to Des Moines, creating 14 jobs and retaining six others.

Knoxville's Weiler gets $600,000 and tax benefits to expand manufacturing at its heavy road equipment plant for 106 new jobs.

 

 

 

Officials Worry Bird Flu May Affect Layers In Iowa Egg Industry

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The discovery of bird flu on an Iowa turkey farm has raised serious concerns that the poultry-killing virus could find its way into chicken barns in the nation's top egg-producing state and decimate flocks.

Iowa is home to roughly 50 million chickens that lay nearly one in every five eggs consumed in the U.S.

The highly contagious H5N2 virus has not been detected in any Iowa chicken barns, but it was confirmed Tuesday on a northwest Iowa turkey farm.

Iowa Poultry Association executive Randy Olson says farmers are on heightened alert, focusing on biosecurity measures to keep the virus away from chickens.

Procedures previously implemented to guard against salmonella help keep bird flu out, such as bird-proofed chicken houses to keep wild birds out and strict clothing-sanitation protocols.

 

 

Ex Lawmaker Says He Did Not Sexually Abuse Wife

GARNER, Iowa (AP) - A former Iowa lawmaker says he didn't have sex with his wife on the night he's accused of sexually abusing her.

Henry Rayhons testified in his own defense Friday in his third-degree sexual abuse trial. Prosecutors allege Rayhons had sex with his wife in May at a Garner nursing home after being told she was no longer mentally capable of consenting due to dementia caused by Alzheimer's disease.

Donna Lou Rayhons died in August.

Rayhons testified that he and his wife held hands, prayed, hugged and kissed when he visited her May 23. He says any sounds Donna Lou Rayhons' former roommate heard were just him situating her in her bed.

Earlier testimony revealed her roommate couldn't be sure whether the noises she heard that day were sexual in nature.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 



 

 

 

   

Friday Afternoon News, April 17

Gries Arrested For Possession Of Controlled Substance

(Le Mars) -- An off-duty Sheriff's Deputy happened to notice a vehicle with a driver that he suspected was smoking marijuana.  The incident happened on Wednesday evening at about 5:15 p.m. at the 900 block of 4th Avenue Southeast. After speaking with the driver it was determined that in fact he was smoking marijuana from a small glass pipe while driving in Le Mars.  19 year old Skyler Gries was arrested for possession of marijuana and for possession of drug paraphernalia.  He was also charged with an OWI on the first offense (drug induced intoxication).  He was later released after posting bond.

 

 

 

Buena Vista County Authorities Investigate Child's Death

(Storm Lake) -- Buena Vista County Sheriff, Kory Elston, is reporting an investigation has begun after the Communications Center received a 9-1-1 phone call concerning an unconscious and unresponsive infant at an Albert City residence.  The Buena Vista County Sheriff's Office, Rembrandt First Responders and the Buena Vista Regional Medical Center Ambulance were dispatched to the residence where CPR and other lifesaving measures wee administered.  The infant, a five month old boy, was later pronounced dead at the Buena Vista Regional Medical Center.  The infant's name is being withheld pending notification of extended family.  The cause of the death is being investigated by the Buena Vista Couinty Sheriff's Office and the Buena Vista Couinty Medical Examiner's Office.

 

 

Gehlen Catholic To Hold "Fire And Ice" Fundraising Ball

(Le Mars) -- Gehlen Catholic will hold its annual Gehlen Ball on Saturday at the Le Mars Convention Center.  This year's theme is Fire and Ice.  Co-chair Lori Schuck  says the theme was chosen in part because of the two parishes coming together to form one parish.

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Schuck offers a glimpse of how the convention center will be decorated.

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The Gehlen Ball is the major fundraiser event for the Gehlen Schools, and according to Schuck the event will feature many silent auction items.

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The Gehlen Ball co-chair says the silent auction will also feature many trips, vacations, and excursions for people to place a bid.  She says in the past the Gehlen Ball has generated more than $230,000 and the money raised has helped each class and activity at Gehlen Catholic.  Schuck says doors will open at 5:45 p.m. with the dinner to be served between 6:15 and 7:30 p.m.  The silent auction will conclude at 8:15 p.m.  One of the highlights of the annual event is the announcement of the Spirit of Peter J. Gehlen Award which is presented to a long-time supporter of the Gehlen Catholic Schools.

Dry March

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - Weather experts say Nebraska and Iowa experienced a near-record dry March this year.
Regional and national climatologists and meteorologists announced their findings Thursday. They said the state had its second-driest March on record, while Iowa had its third-driest March, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
Central Nebraska experienced its driest March in 121 years of record-keeping.
Weather experts say dry conditions have contributed to a brisk fire season, a slow start to tornado season and lower headwaters for the Platte and Missouri rivers. However, the National Weather Service expects the two states to get rain this month.
The National Drought Mitigation Center, housed at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, reports that nearly 38 percent of the continental United States is in drought.
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Body Found In Lake

JEWELL, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say they have found a man dead in Little Wall Lake in Iowa's Hamilton County.
Sheriff Dennis Hagenson tells KCCI-TV (http://bit.ly/1Eaeu7e ) that a dive team had been searching for a missing man Friday in the lake, located just south of Jewell. He was found dead around 12:30 p.m. and was recovered from the lake. His identity has not yet been released.
A man reported he found keys, sunglasses and a vehicle Thursday evening. He tells KCCI that he called the park ranger when he discovered the items still at the lake Friday morning.
Authorities say the case isn't considered suspicious at this time, though it remains under investigation.
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Branstad Signs 18 Bills Into Law

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Bills ranging from the illumination of rear vehicle registration plates to deer and wild turkey harvest reporting requirements have become law.
Gov. Terry Branstad signed 18 bills into law Friday. They will go into effect this year.
The bills include a measure to increase penalties for someone convicted of cheating on a gambling game and another to prohibit peace officers from engaging in sexual misconduct with offenders and juveniles.
One bill will require certain vehicles to illuminate the rear registration plate and another will update rules for hunters tagging deer and wild turkey.
The bills required a majority vote in the Republican-controlled House and the Democratic-led Senate.

Tractor Accident Kills One

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) - An Iowa man was killed and his passenger critically injured following a crash between a pickup truck and a John Deere tractor northeast of Council Bluffs.
The Iowa State Patrol says 42-year-old Kurt Sulzman, of Polk City, died in the collision Thursday.
24-year-old Caleb Deist, of Grimes, was taken to Audubon County Memorial Hospital and transferred to Iowa Methodist Medical Center in Des Moines. His condition hasn't been released.
Troopers say the driver of the tractor, 45-year-old Cory Handlos, of Audubon, was taken to the Audubon hospital. The extent of his injuries wasn't immediately available.
Authorities say Sulzman was northbound on U.S. Highway 71 when the collision occurred at an intersection. The pickup, tractor and seed planter it was pulling ended up in a ditch.

Grain Bin Fatality

AUDUBON, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say a western Iowa man has died from injuries sustained after he became trapped in a grain bin.
The Audubon County Sheriff's Office responded a little before 1 p.m. Thursday to a report of someone submerged in grain. The Audubon County Medical Examiner pronounced 62-year-old Gary Fancher, of Audubon, dead at the scene after he was removed from the bin. It's unclear how long he was trapped.
The sheriff's office says Fancher had entered the grain bin to break corn loose from above as he unloaded it.
Fire departments from nearby Exira, Harlan and Atlantic assisted the Fancher's extrication. No further information has been released.

Racing And Gaming Commission Approves Development For Bettendorf Casino

BETTENDORF, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission has approved development plans for the Isle of Capri casino's move to Bettendorf.
The  commission unanimously approved the plan Thursday. An 82,000-square-foot, land-based casino will be built between two existing hotel towers on Isle of Capri's riverfront property.
Construction is expected to cost about $30 million.
The chief development officer for the casino said the company expects to use money from operations to fund the construction and does not expect to need third-party financing for the project.
The president of the holder of the casino's gaming license says the nonprofit expects a revenue increase that will help fund programs and projects in the community.
Construction is expected to begin in early May and last 12-14 months.

Texas Man Charged In The Mystery Millionaire Scandal

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - A Texas businessman charged with helping a lottery official try to claim a rigged $14 million jackpot has been released from jail while he fights extradition to Iowa.
Robert Rhodes of Sugar Land, Texas was released under electronic monitoring after posting $10,000 bond last week. An extradition hearing is set for May 7.
Rhodes is disputing charges that he worked with a friend, 52-year-old Eddie Tipton, to try to claim the Hot Lotto jackpot. Tipton was security director for the Multi-State Lottery Association, an Iowa-based group that operates Powerball and Hot Lotto for state lotteries.
Prosecutors say Tipton may have inserted a software program that manipulated the random number generator for Hot Lotto. They say Tipton bought the winning ticket, and Rhodes and others later tried to claim it.


 

 

 

   

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