August 8 news

WORTHINGTON – During a pre-trial hearing Wednesday in Nobles County District Court, a change of venue request made by Josue Fraga’s defense team was denied. Fraga, accused of murdering his 2-year-old niece Samantha in 2008, is scheduled to go on trial in September. He was convicted of first-degree murder in May of 2009, but that conviction was vacated in 2012 when new evidence was discovered. Jury selection is scheduled to begin September 9.

WORTHINGTON – Nobles Cooperative Electric’s Operation Round Up application deadline is drawing near. Operation Round Up is designed to provide financial assistance to non-profit organizations in the surrounding communities of Murray, Nobles, and adjacent counties. Organizations that serve these communities can request funds for projects involving: community service, economic development, education and youth, environment and disaster relief. The trust board is currently accepting applications. The deadline for submitting applications is September 3. Call NCE at 507-372-7331 or email nce@noblesce.com to request an application.

WORTHINGTON - A tentative plan to create a recreational trail around Lake Bella has been set aside by the Okabena-Ocheda Watershed District. At the Lake Bella Dam Recreation Area, 10 acres of grass are mowed, and there is a boat landing in the park, along with two shelters and rustic restroom facilities. But feedback from the recreational trail plan has been negative, according to district board members. They have instead decided to leave the recreational area as is.

SPIRIT LAKE, Iowa – Spirit Lake City Hall operations will relocate to temporary space beginning this Friday, according to City Administrator Mark Stevens.

City Hall will be closed on that day for moving office equipment and furniture. Services will resume at the new location on Monday. The new city hall will be at 708 18th Street, at the intersection of Highways 9 and 71 in downtown Spirit Lake. The new location is behind Hoien Realty, about 1/2 block from the old city hall.

The city hall phone number will remain the same and mail addressed to the current Hill Avenue address will continue to be delivered.

Stevens said that the temporary location will remain convenient to the public to visit City Hall for services. Parking is on the west side of the building. A small meeting room will be used for committees and work sessions but the August 13 City Council meeting will be in the Community Room at the Public Library on 16th Street. Future meetings may be held at the Courthouse; subject to a decision by the City Council.

JACKSON - The Jackson City Council this week approved an offer received from Chant Singvongsa of Jackson in the amount of $1,000 to purchase the city-owned Chozen Building on Main Street.The council introduced an ordinance to sell the building, which will be approved at its Aug. 21 meeting. Singvongsa will then be able to take possession of the building on Sept. 5. Singvongsa said he plans to operate an Asian buffet and carry-out restaurant, which would open sometime in the spring. Singvongsa also operates Singvongsa Landscaping and the Wishy-Washy Laundromat in Jackson.

ROCK RAPIDS, Iowa – Erica Rose Daniels, of Rock Rapids was charged August 7 with Child Endangerment. The charge stems from an earlier incident that occurred back on June 18, when a 3-year-old child was found sitting along Highway 9 (1st Avenue) in Rock Rapids.

FULDA – The D.A.R.E. program has been eliminated at Fulda Elementary school due to scheduling decision. The program, which has been taught by Slayton Police Officer Tom Whitehead, has been offered to fifth-grade students for more than 20 years. Designed to teach youth about preventing the use of controlled drugs, membership in gangs, avoiding violent behavior and resisting peer pressure, D.A.R.E. was funded by local civic groups who provided the monies for purchasing the class’ educational materials, a program graduation gift of a t-shirt for each student and paying for the end-of-course field trip.

Officer Whitehead’s pay for teaching the program has been provided by the City of Fulda.

STORM LAKE, Iowa - Several young adults landed in jail after an argument erupted early Wednesday morning in Storm Lake. Police say officers were dispatched to the 700 block of West 9th Street just after midnight, where they encountered a large group of people engaged in an argument, with two of the people allegedly threatening others with weapons, namely a knife and a 2 x 4 club.

Police intervened and disarmed the two armed men. 21 year old Jermaine Ford and 24 year old Howard Young, both of Storm Lake, were arrested, and booked on charges of Going Armed with Intent and Disorderly Conduct.

Police further took into custody several others who reportedly were involved in the disturbance. Darrian Kelly, age 22 of Spencer, along with 30 year old Scott Banks, 28 year old Antonio Banks and JT Cunningham age 25, all of Storm Lake, were charged with disorderly conduct.

As officers were bringing the crowd under control, 21 year old Derriek Bolden, age 21 of Storm Lake allegedly fought with police and was shot with a taser and subdued. He was transported to the regional medical center and treated for taser exposure, and was subsequently booked on charges of interference with official acts. Additionally off-duty Storm Lake Police Offers were dispatched to assist in the incident, as were members of the Buena Vista County Sheriff’s Department. No officers were injured in the incident.

MINNESOTA - A bull that broke loose from a rodeo event at the Dakota County Fairgrounds injured eight people, one of them seriously, authorities say.

A witness said the 1,200 pound bull got out of its pen and was stampeding through the crowd.
Dakota County Sheriff Dave Bellows says a deputy shot the animal twice with his handgun but the bull was not deterred. Horseback riders corralled the bull after 10 or 15 minutes.

Seven people, including a child, sustained minor injuries and were treated at the fairgrounds. One woman whose injuries included a head wound was airlifted to Hennepin County Medical Center.
The bull was part of the “Bulls and Barrels” event at the fairgrounds in Farmington.

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