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Monday Afternoon News October 15

More than 2000 customers of MidAmerican Energy Without Power Monday Morning

(Le Mars) -- For an hour and a half this morning, parts of Le Mars, Oyens, and Plymouth County lost power.  MidAmerican Energy spokesperson Tina Potthoff says more than 2000 customers were affected by the outage.
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Potthoff says the outage affected 1765 customers in Le Mars, 281 customers within rural Plymouth County and 66 customers in Oyens.  Potthoff says the reason for the outage was a mobile transformer overheated.  She says the outage is connected to the last power outage that occurred on the morning of Saturday, September 29th.
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Potthoff says MidAmerican Energy crews will continue to make improvements to the substation for the next three weeks.

Fire Fighters Still On the Scene Of Friday's Fire

(Le Mars) -- Fire fighters are still at the scene of the city's tree, leaf, and grass disposal site after a fire was started on Friday evening.  Fire Chief Dave Schipper says the scene is still smoldering with several hot spots.  He says fire officials are at the scene to make certain there are no flare ups.  Next to the site is a mobile home trailer court, and a cornfield with round bales.  

Escaped Inmate Captured

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - A 22-year-old inmate who escaped from a Sioux City work release facility has been arrested.
The Sioux City Journal reports that U.S. marshals arrested Nikolas Saul on Friday night and has since been taken to the Woodbury County Jail.
The Iowa Corrections Department says Saul, of Sioux City, escaped from the facility on Oct. 6. He'd been transferred there on Sept. 18.
Saul originally was sentenced to 15 years for assault, going armed with intent and intimidation with a dangerous weapon for a February 2008 incident in Sioux City.


Iowa Veterans Home Fined, Again

MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa (AP) - The state-run Iowa Veterans Home in Marshalltown has been fined again for not meeting care standards.
The Des Moines Register reports that a fine of $250 a day stems from the death of a resident last month and was the third time in four months that the home had been fined.
Federal officials also extended restrictions on new admissions until the home demonstrates that problems have been corrected.
The Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals says workers at the home didn't set an alarm that would have alerted them that a frail, 91-year-old woman was trying to get out of bed. She fell and suffered leg fractures that were blamed for her death.
The home's top administrator, David Worley, says the home is working to improve resident care.

Missing Teenage Girls And Teen Boys May Be Headed To Florida

SHELLSBURG, Iowa (AP) - Eastern Iowa authorities say two missing 15-year-old girls apparently have gone on a planned trip with two boys from the western Iowa town of Atlantic.
Benton County Sheriff Randy Forsyth says the teenagers aren't believed to be in any danger.
Forsyth says a call from one boy's cellphone went to a Pennsylvania number, but investigators aren't sure whether that's the teens' destination.
Missing are 16-year-old Corey Sunderman, 13-year-old Austin Boggs, both of Atlantic, and 15-year-old Skie Floyd and Jazlyn Visek, from the Shellsburg area.
Crystal Sunderman, the mother of Corey Sunderman, says Skie Floyd and her son had been dating and that the trip was planned.
She told Atlantic radio station KJAN that the four may be on their way to Florida for a skateboarding event.

YMCA Lifeguard Accused Of Sexual Abuse

URBANDALE, Iowa (AP) - A YMCA employee faces a third-degree sexual abuse charge after a 14-year-old girl accused him of inappropriately touching her.
The Des Moines Register reports that 20-year-old Steven Arens of Windsor Heights allegedly met his accuser while working as a life guard at a local pool. Arens was charged Friday, and was being held
without bond Friday at the Polk County Jail.
YMCA spokesman Dave Gieseke says Arens worked part-time in the aquatics department at the Walnut Creek Family YMCA in Windsor Heights. He also worked as a volunteer coach at Roosevelt High
School, coaching ninth-grade baseball for about a year. But a Des Moines schools spokesman he says he is no longer affiliated with the school.
Urbandale police Sergeant Gary Lang would not say where the alleged abuse occurred.


Monday News, October 15

Plymouth County 4-H Council To Hold Fund Raiser

(Kingsley) -- The Plymouth County Youth 4-H Council is giving back to the community by organizing a fund raiser for a Kingsley family.  Sam Pratt, a 4-H Youth Council member says the organization will hold a fundraiser on Sunday, October 21 at the Plymouth County Fairgrounds, beginning at 1 p.m.  The money raised will help the Vondrak Family who has three young daughters, all suffering from Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type II and are confined to wheelchairs.
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Pratt explains why the 4-H Council decided to hold the fund raiser for the Vondrak family.

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Kennedy Vondrak, the oldest of the three daughters is in second grade and is a member of the Kingsley Clover Kids group.  Clover Kids is an organized effort that teaches young people about 4-H before they are old enough to join 4-H. Pratt says her fellow 4-H Council Members were eager to help with the fund raiser.   For additional information, or for registration forms, you can contact the Plymouth County Extension office at 546-7835.

Gehlen Catholic To Make Important Announcement

(Le Mars) -- Gehlen Catholic High School is planning a news conference for this (Monday) afternoon at the Reardon Family Gym.  The announcement will take place at 2:20 p.m. and it has to deal with Gehlen Catholic and its affinity with Opportunities Unlimited.

School Officials Able To Track Bullying Incidents

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - School administrators in Sioux City say a new state bullying database helped them stop harassment.
The Sioux City Journal reports that school officials have used the system to track where instances of bullying have taken place.
The database required by the Iowa Department of Education has been in use for the past month. The system collects detailed reports about where bullying has occurred, who was involved and why
the victim was targeted.
Sioux City schools administrator Marilyn Charging says the database has helped administrators identify where bullying has occurred, allowing them to increase staff in problem areas.
The Iowa Department of Education says districts filed nearly 11,000 reports of bullying in the 2011 to 2012 school year.

16 Year Old Dies After Car-Train Accident

LITTLE SIOUX, Iowa (AP) - A 16-year-old girl has died after her vehicle was struck by a train in western Iowa.
The Iowa State Patrol says Cailey Berndt, of Little Sioux, didn't yield to a train at a crossing around noon on Sunday in Harrison County. The train struck her vehicle, which ended up in a
nearby waterway.
Berndt was flown to a hospital in Omaha, Neb. Authorities say she was pronounced dead shortly after her arrival at the hospital.
The Iowa State Patrol and Union Pacific officials are investigating the accident.


Weekend Storm Produces Three Fires

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say three house fires in the Des Moines area were all caused by weekend thunderstorms.
The Des Moines Register reports that lightning strikes triggered fires at two homes in Johnston and one in Clive.
The Johnston fires were triggered at houses across the street from one another. Johnston Fire Chief Jim Krohse says both involved ruptured gas lines, but no one was injured.
In Clive, a lightning strike was blamed for an attic fire that caused damage estimated at $20,000. No injuries were reported.
The blazes were reported as the weekend threat of tornadoes subsided. Storms that moved through Iowa late Friday and early Saturday shed up to 2 inches of rain in the southern part of the


Teenager Shot in Des Moines

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A Des Moines teenager is dead and another is in jail after an accidental shooting that may have begun with horseplay.
Sixteen-year-old Corey Hamilton Junior died of a single gunshot wound to the head shortly after 10:30 p.m. Friday. Police have charged 15-year-old Dontavius Sharkey with involuntary manslaughter
and reckless use of a firearm.
Des Moines Police Sergeant Chris Scott says the boys "may have been horsing around" with the gun before it went off. Scott says Sharkey told police that he thought it was unloaded when he pulled
the trigger.
The shooting happened in a Des Moines apartment complex. Hamilton was rushed to a nearby hospital, where he was pronounced dead.


Two Girls Gone Missing

SHELLSBURG, Iowa (AP) - Authorities in eastern Iowa are searching for two missing 15-year-old girls.
KWWL-TV in Waterloo reports that Skie Floyd and Jazlyn Visek both last made contact with family members on Saturday afternoon.
Family members say they left in a gold Jeep Grand Cherokee with no license plates. The girls are both from the Shellsburg area.
Benton County Sheriff Randy Forsyth says the girls may be with two runaways from the Atlantic area, 16-year-old Corey Sunderman and 13-year-old Austin Boggs.

Jet Makes Emergency Landing

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) - Authorities say mechanical problems forced a twin-engine corporate jet to make an emergency landing in eastern Iowa.
KWQC-TV in Davenport reports that the plane landed safely at the Quad City International Airport on Sunday morning. Six people were on board, and no one was hurt.
The station reports that the plane had a hydraulic failure at high altitude, and was forced to land shortly after 7 a.m. Sunday.


Woman Conducts Drug Deal With  Daughter in Back Seat

DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) - A Davenport woman is accused of smoking marijuana while driving to a drug deal with her 6-week-old child in the back seat.
The Quad-City Times in Davenport reports that 19-year-old Cassandra Davis was charged with possession of a controlled substance and child endangerment.
Davenport police say they spotted Davis smoking a pipe as she drove past an unmarked squad car shortly before 9:30 p.m. on Wednesday. Officers pulled her over and found two baggies of
Police say 18-year-old Joshua Gosselin of Davenport was sitting in the backseat with 13 grams of marijuana, along with prescription painkillers and other pills.
The child endangerment charge is a felony because the infant was exposed to a controlled substance. Davis faces up to five years in prison if convicted.


Iowa Had Few Tornadoes This Summer

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) - Iowa is on pace to see the quietest tornado season in nearly 50 years, thanks to the drought.
State Climatologist Harry Hillaker says this summer's extreme dry conditions have helped keep tornadoes at bay. The Gazette in Cedar Rapids reports that Iowa has recorded just 16 twisters this
Hillaker says that total is the lowest since 1963. Iowa has seen an average of 47 tornadoes annually over the last 33 years. There were 49 reported during another drought year in 1988.
Hillaker says the tornadoes that have hit Iowa this year were fairly weak.




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