Friday Afternoon News, November 16
Jandreau Trial - Day 3
(Le Mars) -- Day three of the Matthew Jandreau trial heard testimony from the Defense side. Jandreau's mother and step brother testified this morning. Jandreau's mother Carolyn Provost said in court this morning that she consumed alcoholic beverages during the time she was pregnant with Matthew Jandreau. Mrs. Provost indicated that her son Matthew lived with her until he was of the age of three when she had moved out and Matthew then lived with his father and other relatives until he was of the age 19. She mentioned the living conditions of which Matthew Jandreau was raised were "not an ideal environment." Provost testified that there was considerable amount of drinking alcohol and intoxication found in the home where Jandreau was raised. Provost testified that at age 13, Matthew was sent to a juvenile detention facility for bringing a pellet gun and pills to school. Provost admitted she often would drink with her son, but said under oath that she has never witnessed him in a "black out" condition where he couldn't remember previous episodes. When asked if she ever witnessed Matthew doing any "bizzare things" while intoxicated? She responded by telling the defense attorney that once Matthew had gotten to the point of intoxication that he was on the floor and rolled himself up inside a carpet rug, and had the carpet coiled around him, then he started kicking. Provost visited her son in jail on one occasion and said her son told her that he didn't remember any of the events from March 2nd, and the last thing he remembers was when he "woke up from being intoxicated" he appeared before the judge the following day. Jandreau's step brother Raleigh Provost testified that there was a lot of drinking, violence, at the home where Jandreau lived. He said the relatives which was where Jandreau grew up often would abuse him and "grab him on the neck" and "throw him into a small bedroom and lock the door." Jandreau lived in Wagner, South Dakota until he was of the age of 19, when he moved to Le Mars to again reside with his mother. Trial has recessed until 9:00 a.m. Monday morning.
Liquor Sales On The Increase
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - State officials say they think changes in where hard liquor can be sold and new flavored drinks popular with women and young people are behind a jump in hard liquor sales.
The Gazette in Cedar Rapids reports (http://bit.ly/S2XHrr ) a 6.4 percent increase in sales of hard liquor in the fiscal year ending June 30.
Alcoholic Beverages Division officials say some of that increase is due to new flavors of liquor that appeal to young people and women.
A change in state law also factored into the increase. Convenience stores no longer must segregate liquor in separate areas or sell items at separate registers.
In the last fiscal year, Iowans age 21 and older drank an average of 35.6 gallons of beer, 2.23 gallons of spirits and 1.9 gallons of wine.
U of I President Apologizes For Athletic Official
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - University of Iowa President Sally Mason is apologizing for the school's failure to protect athletes and employees in its handling of a former athletics department official
accused of sexual harassment.
Mason said in a statement Friday that the university will make changes to avoid a repeat of what she called an "isolated breakdown" in the case of Peter Gray, who resigned last week after working as associate director of athletics student services since 2002.
The Iowa City Press-Citizen published an internal report that accused Gray of violating the school's sexual harassment policy through improper touching that included shoulder massages, hugging
and rubbing. The report says the behavior dated back to Gray's earlier employment at Iowa in the 1990s and continued despite complaints from colleagues, coaches and at least one athlete.
Insurance Company Doesn't Need To Pay For House Fire
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - The Iowa Supreme Court says an insurance company does not have to cover the property damage suffered by a widow whose husband burnt down their house to commit suicide.
The court ruled Friday that Michelle Postell of Dixon doesn't qualify for help under her longstanding fire insurance policy with American Family Insurance.
Postell's estranged husband poured gasoline and lit the house on fire in 2009 to kill himself while the couple was separated.
Michelle Postell had paid the premiums on the fire insurance policy for 20 years, and planned to move back into the home she co-owned after her husband moved out.
The court says her husband intentionally caused a loss under the policy, and so she cannot recover even though she had nothing to do with the fire.
Internal Report Uses Farm Bureau Language On Waste Regulation
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The draft of a state report detailing how agencies should regulate pollution from farms and sewage treatment plants includes passages apparently taken from Iowa Farm Bureau Federation publications.
The Des Moines Register reported Friday that at least two passages in the draft report appeared to be largely lifted from farm bureau publications.
Those passages dealt with a preference for voluntary approaches to prevent runoff pollution and the amount of pollution found in wells.
Some Iowa Department of Natural Resources staffers have objected to parts of the report about agricultural runoff.
The draft report dated Oct. 8 hasn't been released, but the Register obtained a copy.
Gov. Terry Branstad, Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey and Environmental Protection Agency regional administrator Karl Brooks couldn't be reached for comment Wednesday or Thursday.