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Dubuque & Tri-State News

Relay for Life Open House

The American Cancer Society- Relay for Life of Dubuque will be holding a community open house Thursday. The event runs from 4 to 6 pm at UnityPoint Health-Wendt Cancer Center. There will be informational tables where you can find out how to get involved, fundraising ideas, and information on where your fundraising dollars go. This year’s Relay for Life will be held June 5th at Washington Park. To sign up or for more information, go to relayforlife.org/dubuqueia.

Clayton County Fair Acts

The 2020 Clayton County Fair Entertainment has been announced and a pair of popular  country artists will be appearing. Mark Wills will perform August 6th and Lee Greenwood will appear on August 7th. The fair will also feature Demolition Derby, Mutton Busting, Bull Bash, Truck & Tractor Pull and much more. The 166th annual Clayton County Fair runs from August 5th through the 9th. For the complete schedule go to claytoncountyfair.com.

U of D Student Helicopter Crash

A University of Dubuque student was injured Tuesday after a helicopter crash. The Independence Fire Department was dispatched for a helicopter accident at the Independence Municipal Airport. Units arrived on scene and found a helicopter with significant damage along with some damage to a hanger. The student, whose name has not been released, was taken by ambulance to a local hospital with non-life-threatening injuries. The FAA has been contacted and will be assisting Independence Police with their investigation. U of D will release more information as it becomes available.

Camp Courageous Winter Day Camps

Camp Courageous is trying something new this season with winter day camps. The camp is located in Monticello and provides respite care for people with disabilities. It lets parents have a day where they can possibly go out alone, and campers to get out of the house to have fun. Campers can also bring family members to the day camp if they choose. KCRG-TV reports the camp held its very first winter day camp during the first weekend in January. They have many activities for the campers including climbing, archery, swimming, and arts and crafts, just to name a few. Organizers say the day camps help clients who may struggle for a longer period of time at the weekly camps. Camp Courageous will pick up campers from spots in Marion and Dubuque who need rides. The next camp is the first weekend of February. It cost $5.25 an hour, or $45 for a full day.

Grant Program Applications Available

Applications are now available for the Dubuque Racing Association’s annual grant program this week. The program awards funds to non-profit organizations that demonstrate a need for money to keep them operational. Kathy Young director of grants for the DRA says it will be the same process as in previous years. The first of two informational meetings was held last night inside the Showroom at the Q Casino. Another one will be held at noon today at the same location. The regular grant program is not to be confused with the special grant program. Grant recipients will be announced in May. Last year the program awarded over 1.1 million dollars to area non-profit groups and organizations. Applications are available at dradubuque.com.

Manchester Woman Sentenced To Probation

A Manchester woman has been sentenced to probation after being accused of cutting another woman’s face with a knife last summer. 19 year old Cheyenne Clark pleaded guilty to assault by use of a dangerous weapon in Delaware County District Court. Clark was originally charged with going armed with intent and willful injury, but as part of her plea deal those charges were dismissed and she was given two years of probation. Police say Clark slashed another Manchester woman across her nose. She could have been sentenced to up to two years in prison.

Chaplain Schmitt Island Vet’s Memorial

The Dubuque City Council last night unanimously approved awarding the contract to the low bidder for the Chaplain Schmitt Island Veteran’s Memorial Project. Conlin Construction Company had the low bid of 2.56 million dollars. At-Large councilman Ric Jones said it’s great to see the Dubuque Racing Association foot the bill for the project because veterans have already paid a heavy price. Jones says the end result will include amenities to honor Chaplain Schmitt himself as well as all veterans. The improvements will include improving the edge of the pond with seating, plaza expansion space for additional memorials and veteran’s tributes, and clean-up of the pond edge to enhance view sheds. The Tri-State Vietnam Veterans Memorial, which is currently located by Miller Riverview Park, will be relocated to the new Memorial Plaza.  The total cost is 3.2 million dollars.

 

 

Beyond the Game-Field of Dreams

The excitement continues to build for this summer’s Major League Baseball game between the Chicago White Sox and the New York Yankees to be played next to the Field of Dreams iconic field in Dyersville. The game will be played August 13th and Beyond the Game, an Iowa baseball experience presented by Travel Iowa & Midwest One Bank, has announced a partnership and series of events taking place August 12-15. Visitors and residents are invited to experience outdoor concerts, viewing parties and a major league baseball fan fest. More details will be released soon at beyondthegameiowa.com.

Donut Boy Donut Demolition

A long time Dubuque business will be giving out a big prize if that person can eat enough in an allotted time. Tessa Fahey, Director of Restaurant Operations, says Donut Boy is putting on a Donut Demolition, February 1st from 11 am to 1 pm, where contestants can see how many donut holes they can eat against the clock for a prize of $500. Time slots for the contest will be filled and people are encouraged to come and cheer the contestants. Donut Boy was recently purchased by P & K Enterprises, who Fahey says also owns the Dairy Queens and Fazoli’s in Dubuque, so if the Donut Demolition is a big hit there may be more eating contests later this year. All participants must be eighteen years or older and register online at donutdemolition.com by January 28th. An entry fee of $20 and a liability form must be completed upon registration. A Donut Demolition t-shirt will be provided the day of the event.

 

Carnegie-Stout Community Engagement

Officials at the Carnegie-Stout Public Library said that efforts in recent years to increase public engagement with the facility have been successful. Susan Henricks, director at the library, said the organization began the effort in 2015 with the goal of improving the facility and increasing outreach in the community. They created space for a 3D printer, a recording room and offered other amenities. The program also focused on involvement in the community. The library started programs at various grade schools as well as after school programs like the Boys and Girls Club. Henricks tells our coverage partners, KCRG TV, the initiatives also eliminated late fees, which increased library visitors. Other changes to help increase accessibility include checkout of nontraditional items like virtual reality goggles, baking pans, and workout kits. Officials are hoping to get started on their next round of initiatives in the next month. The plan is set to be put together by July and will account for the next three to five years at the library.

Open House For Pool Rescheduled

The grand opening of the new aquatic center at Hempstead High School that was postponed because of this past weekend’s winter storm will now be held this evening. The 9.5 million dollar facility was inspected by the Iowa  Department of Health nearly two weeks ago and passed. District Superintendent Stan Rheingans says he is excited for the community to come and see the new center. Rheingans says it took a lot of planning to make the new pool a reality. A short program will be held at 5 pm, followed by an open house. At 6:30 there will be a meet in the new facility, featuring teams from Senior and Hempstead. There were rumors circulating that Rheingans and some members of the school board were going to make a splash by jumping into the new pool. In the words of the superintendent “we’ll just have to wait and see.”

Reynolds Recommends Appointments To State Boards

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds is recommending appointments to state boards and commissions and several of them involve residents in the Tri-State area. The recommendation of West Delaware school superintendent Kristen Rickey to the Iowa Board of Education Examiners needs to be approved by the Senate. So does the appointment of Melissa Henderson of Monticello to the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy. The appointments of Jenna Stevens of Preston to the Southeast Regional Advisory Board and Paula Mayer of Sabula to the Mississippi Parkway Planning Commission do not need Senate approval.

Fire Displaces Mineral Point Family

The American Red Cross is assisting a family in southwest Wisconsin after fire damaged their home Sunday afternoon. Crews from the Mineral Point fire department and other surrounding emergency crews responded to the fire at around 12:30. The family was able to get out safely and no injuries were reported. Their names have not been released. Crews remained on scene for about five hours. The cause of the fire is still under investigation, although authorities believed it started in the attic area.

SOUPer Sunday-Convivium

Convivium Urban Farmstead is hosting a special fundraising event to raise awareness about poverty and food insecurity in our community. Co-owner, Leslie Shalabi, says they are partnering with Riverbend Food Bank for SOUPer Sunday on January 26th. Participants will select and keep a handmade, ceramic bowl made by a local artist and help themselves to soups and breads donated by the different local restaurants. Salabi says there will be a short program but it’s mostly it’s a fun event. Proceeds from the event, which runs from 4 pm to 6 pm, will go to Riverbend Food Bank and Convivium Urban Farmstead to support programming for low income individuals in Dubuque. For tickets and more information go to the Convivium Urban Farmstead Facebook page

Johnson County Ambulance

The Johnson County Ambulance Service recently added a new vehicle that now has safety features unlike any other in eastern Iowa. Those safety additions range from brighter lights, low-frequency sirens people can hear in soundproof cars or while wearing headphones, and 360-degree cameras outside the vehicle to help navigate busy crowds. One of the more important safety features includes a camera view into the back of the ambulance, that leaders like Director Fiona Johnson tells our coverage partners, KCRG-TV, will help people who need the ambulance, but the medics, too. What makes the ambulance unique, outside of the price, is that staff with the ambulance service in the county designed it themselves over the span of nearly one year. Other features inside the vehicle include new harnesses for medics, built-in airbags, and a system that helps medics get a cot into the ambulance. Johnson says from now on, all new ambulances will include similar features.

 

 

Dubuque Man Sentenced On Gun Charge

A Dubuque man will be spending over five years in federal prison after he was found to be in possession of a loaded gun while selling drugs from an apartment in Dubuque last summer. 24 year old Michael Burdunice Jr. pleaded guilty in August to being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm. Police executed a search warrant at the apartment, where Burdunice shared with his girlfriend and two young children. Inside investigators found a loaded 9 mm Glock handgun with an extended magazine. The serial number had been scratched off. Also recovered were narcotics, digital scales, baggies, packaging materials and large amounts of money. Burdunice was sentenced to 70 months behind bars. He must serve three years of supervised release once he gets out.

Manchester Felon Sentenced For Having Meth

A convicted felon from Manchester has been sentenced to federal prison for possessing methamphetamine near a park. In September, 59 year old Robin Kinney pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance near a protected location. She was sentenced  to 60 months in prison. Kinney was found by police near Central Park. Her purse contained over 18 grams of pure meth, a glass pipe, spoon, syringes and plastic baggies. Prosecutors say her cell phone showed incoming and outgoing text messages related to the purchase, sale and distribution of meth. Kinney was previously convicted of multiple narcotics related offenses. Once she serves her federal sentence she will be placed on eight years of probation.

Boscobel Standoff

A rural Eastman Wisconsin man is facing multiple charges after a standoff Friday morning in the City of Boscobel. Around 10:00 a.m., the Boscobel Police Department received a report of a male subject, identified as 32-year old Bryant Matti, who had barricaded himself in a residence at 1306 Elm Street and was armed with a rifle, and possibly had a female subject in the residence with him. A standoff ensued and gun shots were heard from inside the residence which prompted law enforcement to make entry. Inside law enforcement located a 20 year old female from La Crosse, Wisconsin with a gunshot wound to her lower right leg. Matti was taken into custody without further incident and both were taken to hospitals for medical treatment. Matti was then transported to the Grant County Jail where he was book on charges of 1st Reckless Injury, Injury by Negligent Handling of a Dangerous Weapon, False Imprisonment, Criminal Trespass to a Locked Dwelling, and two counts of Bail Jumping.

Snow Route Sunday and Monday

The City of Dubuque’s odd/even snow route parking policy will be in effect today and Monday. Parking will not be allowed on the odd-numbered side of the streets on Sunday and parking will not be allowed on the even-numbered side on Monday.  The only streets affected are those identified with snow route signs, which include the times that parking is restricted. The policy’s parking restriction will be enforced during the entire posted and declared period, with no allowance for parking prior to the end of the posted time period or after a perceived plow pass.  Vehicles violating the restrictions will be ticketed and violators fined $30.

Asbury Snow Emergency

The city of Asbury has declared a snow emergency. It started at noon and runs through Monday at noon. During snow emergencies, residents are allowed to park on the odd side of the street on odd numbered calendar days and on the even side on even numbered days from 7 am to 7 pm. The city is urging motorists if they can, to remove their vehicles from the street to help make it easier for snow removal. If your vehicle is found parked on the wrong side during a snow emergency, it will be towed away at your expense.

Air Supply Five Flags

A  legendary pop group will be coming back to Dubuque for the first time in nearly 38 years. Air Supply will return to the Five Flags Center in Dubuque for a concert on March 27th. Local favorite Elizabeth Mary will open the 7:30 pm show. Tickets for the concert went on sale Friday morning at the Five Flags Box Office and online at FiveFlagsCenter.com.

Loras College Dance Marathon Saturday Basketball

A local college is having a special fundraising event at Saturday’s men’s and women’s basketball games between Dubuque rivals that they will be hosting. Loras Dance Marathon Team member Lauren Krapfl, says they will be at the Loras College and University of Dubuque games.  There will be special 50/50 Raffles going on during both games with the winner announced during halftime of the men’s game. The women’s game starts at 2 pm, the men at 4 pm. The Loras College Dance Marathon creates special projects to provide emotional and financial support to families treated by the University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital, including 52 people from Dubuque. Their largest annual fundraiser, the 12 hour Dance Marathon will be held on April 25th.

 

 

 

Dr. King Birthday Celebration

Members of the Tri-State area community will be celebrating the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on Monday with a breakfast and an event at the Grand River Center. Mary Ann Conzentt, chair of the Multicultural Family Center says this is the 28th year that the celebration will be held in Dubuque. Over the years since the assassination of Dr. King in 1968, Conzentt says there has been some improvement in race relations in Dubuque, but more needs to be done to make the community inclusive to all. The breakfast starts at 7 am. This year’s keynote speaker is he Reverend Dr. Soong Chan Rah. He is an author and professor of church growth and evangelism at North Park Theological Seminary in Chicago. He will speak about a “Current Multicultural Reality Envisioned  by Dr. King.”

 

16th Annual Ice Fest

The National Mississippi River Museum & Aquarium will celebrate its 16th Annual Ice Fest presented by Dupaco Community Credit Union Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Wendy Scardino, Director of Marketing & Communications, says day one will feature water rescues and other winter-themed activities as the indoor/outdoor event kicks off.  Among the activities on Sunday for kids, a special story time with Curious George. Monday features a weather academy, Alaskan Malamutes and various movie offerings. Sacrdino says the Museum hours and the Ice Fest schedule will let everyone have more than one chance to attend an event. Members get in free, Dupaco members get 35-percent discount and Ice Fest is included with General Admission to the Museum. Tickets are good for two days. For more information go to rivermuseum.com.

Burns Hearing

The Manchester man accused of murdering a woman 40 years ago in Cedar Rapids is back in court. Thursday marked the second day of suppression hearings for Jerry Burns. Burns is accused of stabbing and killing high school student Michelle Martinko while she was out shopping. The defense team for Burns argued the court should throw out key DNA evidence, as well as information gathered from Burns’ cell phone and computer. They say because there was no warrant to get his DNA, investigators should not be able to use the information they acquired thereafter. This suppression hearing will now have a third day today, after questioning took nearly four hours Thursday.

Farley Man Charged With Sexual Assault

A Farley man faces a sexual assault charge after police say had sex with an intoxicated college student in a dorm room on the University of Northern Iowa campus last year. Court records from Blackhawk County say 21 year old Zachary Lindauer was arrested early Thursday morning and charged with third degree sexual abuse. The woman told investigators she met Lindauer at a bar in downtown Cedar Falls on the night of August 17th. He offered to walk her to her dorm room. This was captured on campus video surveillance. The assault allegedly took place later that night. When questioned by investigators, Lindauer admitted to having sex with the woman while she was impaired.  His next court appearance is set for February 5th.

Dickeyville Students Evacuated

A gas leak in Dickeyville forced the evacuation of students at Holy Ghost Catholic School Thursday morning. The Grant County sheriff’s office says the leak occurred near the intersection of Church and West Main Streets. The students were taken to the building that houses the Holy Ghost Immaculate Conception system in Kieler.  A utility company was called in to cap the leak.

Chamber Forecast Luncheon 2020

Business leaders, educational administrators and local elected officials packed the Grand River Center today (yesterday) for the 2020 Forecast Luncheon. Guest speakers touched on several topics, including entrepreneurship and innovation, workforce, healthcare, finance and retail. Ben Graham, owner of Graham Style Store in Dubuque says while some retail chains, such as Shopko closed their doors last year, a number of mom and pop start-up businesses took off. He says he expects that trend to continue this year. Healthcare is a hot button topic both locally and nationally. In some parts of the country, keeping people healthy and out of the hospital is a big challenge, but Chad Wolbers, CEO at UnityPoint Health says Dubuque doesn’t have that problem. The mission for Dubuque Area Labor Management has always been to retain a strong workforce by providing good job opportunities for young people in the community and executive director Kelly Cooper says that mission will not change in 2020. Tyson Leyendecker, Market President at Dubuque Bank and Trust says 2019 was the inversion of the “yield curve”, which was a series of rate hikes by the Federal Reserve dropping long-term rates below short term rates. Bob Woodward, vice-president of Woodward Communications says there are a lot of resources in the community for aspiring entrepreneurs to take advantage of. Keith Rahe, president and CEO at Travel Dubuque spoke about tourism. The luncheon is hosted every year by the Dubuque Area Chamber of Commerce.

2020 Iowa Pork Congress

The 2020 Iowa Pork Congress will be held in Des Moines at the Iowa Events Center on January 22nd and 23rd. The event, organized by the Iowa Pork Producers Association, is North America’s largest winter swine trade show and conference. Director of Communications, Dal Groom, says the annual event will feature seminars, a variety of speakers and the huge trade show. Seminars will include topics with practical information including several about buildings and maintenance. Grooms says this year the environment and manure issues will be addressed by a special speaker. The business seminars will include talks about Iowa nuisance cases and economics for prices and supplies. For more information about events and registration, visit iowaporkcongress.org.

Dolan To Call It A Career

The longest serving woman to be elected in Dubuque County says she will be retiring after her eighth-four-year term expires at the end of the year. County auditor Denise Dolan made the announcement Tuesday night at the Dubuque County Democratic Central Committee meeting. Dolan was appointed to the position in October of 1987 and since has been elected by the voters eight times. She says it was a tough decision, but the time was right. Over the past 32 years a lot has been accomplished under Dolan’s leadership. The most noteworthy being over 130 successful and fair county-wide elections at the federal, state and local levels. But Dolan knows she couldn’t have done it alone. Dolan has no immediate plans after she retires, but one thing is for sure…she won’t miss getting out of bed to brave inclement weather conditions. The filing deadline for anyone wanting to run for county auditor is March 25th. At the beginning of the year Dolan became the longest serving elected woman official in the county surpassing former supervisor Donna Smith. Dolan was an intern in the news department at KDTH in the mid- 1970’s.

Battery Charges Cuba City man

A Cuba City man is facing multiple charges after a welfare check was made early Tuesday morning. At 12:44 am, a Lafayette County Sheriff’s deputy responded to CTH H, Benton Township and 27-year old Kelton Prine was arrested for Disorderly Conduct, Battery, Intimidating a Victim, and False Imprisonment. Prine was transported to the Lafayette County Jail. Cuba City Police, Darlington Police, and Grant County Deputies assisted on scene.

Iowa Special Olympics Wrap

Athletes celebrated at the Grand River Center in Dubuque after wrapping up two days of competition in the Winter Games of the Iowa Special Olympics. About 280 athletes competed in Dubuque during the two-day event. They came from all across the state to do their best in events that included Alpine and cross country skiing, figure and speed skating, and even snowshoeing. Karen Whitman, Iowa Special Olympics marketing and communications coordinator, tells KCRG-TV, the competition is great, but the personal connections that develop are even better. The Winter Special Olympics have been held in Dubuque for the past 34 years.

University of Dubuque Honor Band Concert

University of Dubuque’s Department of Fine and Performing Arts will welcome 100 high school musicians from nearly 30 area schools to campus Thursday, for the University of Dubuque Honor Band Concert. Students will begin the day with rehearsals at 8:30 a.m. and conclude with a concert at 7 pm in John and Alice Butler Hall, Heritage Center. The University of Dubuque High School Honor Band Concert is an opportunity for talented band students in grades 9-12 to join together and spend a day making music. Tomorrows performance is free and open to the public.

Pet in Parks Meeting Comments

The Parks and Recreations Commission heard from a packed chamber in Dubuque Tuesday evening about views on allowing pets in parks. The department hosted the town hall as the last step in deciding whether to draft an ordinance for the Dubuque City Council to vote on. It would allow pets in the majority of city parks. This comes after residents took a survey on the issue. Rebecca Kuhle, Parks and Recreation Commission chairperson, said the process is to stop the potential of citizens having issues with the ordinance in the future. Those against the idea argued pets can be uncontrollable and that the parks would be dirtier. Some citizens voiced their concerns with the change, saying there need to be more amenities like water fountains and garbage cans in the parks to accommodate the pets. Some also proposed the idea of opening more dog parks and leaving regular parks as is.

Dubuque Man Sentenced In Shooting

A Dubuque man has been sentenced to federal prison for shooting at a graduation house party in Dubuque last summer. Court records from Cedar Rapids say 34 year old Norris Culver pleaded guilty in August to one count of being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm. He was sentenced to 110 months in prison. Prosecutors say Culver left his house on the night of May 17th and fired multiple rounds from a .45 caliber handgun towards a duplex across the street where a graduation party was taking place. Some people were outside while others, including three minor children were inside.  Culver did not hit anyone with the shots, but did hit the siding of the duplex with three rounds. Police responded and took Culver into custody. Culver has a long criminal record dating back to 2004 when he was convicted of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon. He has other multiple convictions as well. In addition to his prison term for this latest conviction, Culver will serve three years of probation.

District To Add More Parking At Hempstead

For the past few years residents living close to Hempstead High School have complained about students parking in front of their homes. Monday night the school board made a move to help ease the concerns of those residents. The board voted to approve a plan that would add an additional 41 parking spaces at the school. District Manager of Buildings and Grounds Bill Burkhart says bids on the project are due by February 6th. He says if they come in at or below the estimated $170,000 cost, work will begin this summer. The new parking spaces will be located near the old flag pole entry where the school’s main entrance is located. Over 170 parking spaces were taken up by the construction of the new pool at Hempstead and now that the pool is completed the school will regain 92 of those parking spaces. The district will also lease additional parking spaces for students at Dubuque Bible Church and Usha Park, which are located near the school.

Peosta and Farley Elections

Residents of Peosta have chosen a new mayor in a special election held on Tuesday. James Merten will be the next mayor of Peosta after receiving 225 votes, or 60.5 percent of the vote. Jack Kalb received 126 votes, or 33.9 percent. Former mayor Larry Mescher, who quit his post in October and then tried to it back, received 20 votes, or 5.4 percent. The special election for a position on the Farley City Council went to Corey John Birkel, who garnered 102 votes, compared to 37 votes for Nick Mescher.

Second Arrest in New Year’s Shooting

A second suspect has been charged in a Walnut Street shooting on January 1st.  28-year old Derrick Timmons was arrested and charged with attempted murder, intimidation with a dangerous weapon, going armed with intent and possession of a firearm by a felon in that case. Through further investigation, it was determined 26-year old Katwan Brown, handed Timmons a handgun just prior to the shooting of 25-year old  Darrin Heard in the abdomen. Brown is a convicted felon and is prohibited from possessing firearms or ammunition. Brown was arrested on warrants on Monday afternoon and is being charged with Aiding and Abetting Attempted Murder, a Class B Felony.

Dubuque County Structure Fire

Authorities say a skid loader parked inside a garage is the probable cause of a fire that destroyed the building on a farm in Dubuque County Friday night. Sheriff’s deputies along with fire crews from Sherrill and Holy Cross responded to a farm in the 18,000 block of South Mound Road. The 24-by-36 structure was totally engulfed when crews arrived. The building contained tools and farm equipment valued at around $100,000. The building and its’ contents were a total loss. A grain bin next to the building was also damaged. The property is owned by Thomas and Nancy Fischer. No injuries were reported.

Pick-Up Strikes Home In Dubuque County

A medical condition is being blamed for an accident that left a home severely damaged in Dubuque County over the weekend. The incident happened a few minutes after 5 pm Friday. Emergency crews received a call of a pick-up that had struck a residence in the 10,000 block of Cascade Road. Authorities say the truck was imbedded inside the home when they arrived. Witnesses told investigators that the driver had gotten out of the truck and left the scene. The driver, later identified as 42 year old Andy Conlan, was located at his home in the 10,000 block of Kemp Road. Conlan was found to be suffering from a diabetic condition. He was treated by Key West fire, but refused further medical attention. Conlan was cited for leaving the scene of an accident and having an open container of alcohol. Damage to the pick-up is estimated at $35,000 while the residence sustained around $75,000 in damages.

Teen Pleas Not Guilty To Attempted Murder

A Dubuque teenager accused of attempted murder has pleaded not guilty. 18 year old Earnest Hunt Jr. was arrested on drug charges on Christmas day. On Christmas eve police responded to a report of gunfire in the 500 block of Almond Street. Authorities allege that Hunt shot at the residence. There were people inside, but no one was injured. While investigating the shooting several days later, police arrested Hunt and charged him with attempted murder, intimidation with a dangerous weapon, two counts of going armed with intent and two counts of carrying weapons.  If convicted on all charges Hunt could be sentenced to nearly 50 years behind bars. In a separate incident a few days before Christmas, Hunt was arrested after he almost struck an officer with his vehicle while trying to flee following an attempted traffic stop by police. He was also in possession of cocaine at the time. Hunt has pleaded not guilty to those charges as well.

Impaired Man Strikes Deputy’s Vehicle

A Farley man was arrested Sunday night after he smashed into the back of a Dubuque County sheriff deputy’s squad car and then fled. The sheriff’s office says 29 year old Ryan Behnke is charged with eluding, and operating while under the influence. The incident happened at around 9 pm when a deputy was assisting another driver on the exit ramp of U.S. Highway 20 at Farley. That’s when Behnke struck the squad car. The deputy got into her vehicle, turned on her emergency lights and attempted to stop Behnke, who continue to drive on until he reached his driveway where he was arrested. A field sobriety test revealed that Behnke’s blood alcohol level was over twice the legal limit for driving.

Peosta Mayor Election

Today is the special election to decide the next mayor of Peosta. Former mayor Larry Mescher quit through email back in October. Two days later he asked the council to rescind his resignation, but the councilmembers declined his request. The council initially wanted to appoint a new mayor itself. However, more than 130 people living in the city signed a petition demanding an election. Mescher is one of 3 candidates running. The others are James Merten and Jack Kalb. Polls open at 7:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m.

United Way Over the Edge Launch

A local nonprofit is having a special event Wednesday in the Riverboat Lounge at the Hotel Julien Dubuque. The United Way of Dubuque Area Tri-States is holding their Over The Edge 2020 Launch Party at 5 pm. President/CEO, Danielle Peterson, says this is the 2nd year for the fundraiser that challenges participants to rappel down the side of the Hotel Julien. People who are interested in edging off the roof and raising money to help nearly 40,000 people in the community should attend. Participants are asked to raise $1,000 in pledges to help fund several dozens of local programs through the organizations Community Impact fund. For more information, go to dbqunitedway.org or visit their Facebook page. Over the Edge 2020 date is Friday, June 26th.

Special Olympics Winter Games

For the 34th consecutive year, the Special Olympics Iowa Winter Games will be held in Dubuque today and tomorrow. Around 270 athletes will compete in alpine and cross country skiing, snowshoeing, speed skating and figure skating. Snowshoeing will also have a unified sports competition, which is when athletes with and without disabilities compete on the same team. Dubuque at-large city council member Ric Jones is a longtime supporter of the winter games and he says the games are one of the first major events of the year for the Key City. The summer games are held in Ames and Jones says the athletes look forward to both events. The opening ceremonies begin at 6 pm today at the Grand River Center and Jones’ band, the Upper Main Street Jazz Swing Band has played for every one of them. The Grand Harbor Resort, Mystique Community Ice Center, Sundown Mountain and Camp Albrecht Acres will play host to the various competitions and activities.

Pets in Parks Ordinance Proposal

The City of Dubuque Park and Recreation Commission will host a public input meeting regarding an ordinance proposal to allow pets in the majority of city parks. The meeting will be held on January 14th, from 6 – 8 pm in the City Council Chambers on the second floor of the Historic Federal Building. The meeting allows residents to share feedback, comments or concerns relating to the proposal with Park and Recreation Commissioners. The City of Dubuque Park and Recreation Commission is considering the ordinance proposal for recommendation to the City Council.  The City Council would have to approve any changes to the current ordinance. For more information, go to cityofdubuque.org/2740/Pet-Friendly-Community.

Legislative Session Starts Monday

The recess for Iowa lawmakers is over, as the 2020 legislative session gets started on today. There will be a number of issues that will be discussed and debated during the scheduled 100 day session. For Democrats they include education, affordable accessible health care and workforce. State Representative Lindsey James of Dubuque says another big issue is the protection of mobile home owners, who she says are being taken advantage of by companies outside of the state who are engaging in predatory business practices. James says she is working on a bill that would better protect mobile home owners. Last year a Republican lawmaker proposed a bill that would require Medicaid recipients to do at least 20 hours of volunteer work to remain eligible for the program. James says if the Medicaid Work Rules bill comes up again this session she’ll oppose it. Other issues sure to come up for debate are tax relief, mental health funding, voting rights for Iowans with felony convictions, medical cannabis, child care, gun rights, abortion and a ban on hand held mobile phones while driving.

Hempstead Aquatic Center To Open

All hands will be on deck, as the Dubuque Community School District unveils its’ new aquatic center at Hempstead High School with a grand opening and open house of the new facility on January 18th. The new 9.57 million dollar facility was inspected by the Iowa Department of Health on Wednesday, and it passed. The new pool will cut down on the number of team practices and allow for more than one meet to take place at a time. In early 2019 the school board voted to decommission the old pool because of safety concerns, which saved the districts thousands of dollars. The Dubuque Swimmin Hurricanes, or DASH contributed 1 million dollars to the project, which expanded the number of lanes available in the facility. The center will serve as the main practice facility and home competition venue for DASH.

Meth Charges Jo Daviess Co

Two people from Hanover, Illinois are facing drug charges after the Jo Daviess County Sheriff’s Office arrested them early Friday morning. At 2:53 am, authorities executed a search warrant at 204 Fillmore in Hanover and as result 35-year old Anthony Zito and 33-year old Adrianne Zito were taken into custody on charges of Unlawful Possession of Methamphetamine and Drug Paraphernalia and transported to the Jo Daviess County Jail. The incident remains under investigation and further charges may be forthcoming.

Murder Suppression Hearing

A suppression hearing is set for today for the man accused of killing a Cedar Rapids teen 40 years ago. He wants the DNA evidence, which led to his arrest, thrown out. 65-year old Jerry Burns, of Manchester, has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder charges. His trial is set to start next month in Scott County. Burns is accused of killing 18-year-old Michelle Martinko in 1979. Investigators say he stabbed her in her parents’ car in the Westdale Mall parking lot. Prosecutors say Burns’ blood was in the car, but last month, Burns’ attorney filed a motion to exclude that DNA evidence. The motion says police didn’t have a warrant to seize it.

Dubuque Phone Scam

Local law enforcement is warning Dubuque area residents there is a new phone scam. The caller claims to be a law enforcement officer advising the victim missed jury duty and will need to post bond. The spoofed number is the main admin line number to the Dubuque County Sheriff’s Office. Just a reminder, unless the Sheriff’s office has prearranged something with your attorney, they do not call people to advise them they have a warrant. They also do not accept gift cards to pay for bond. Cash or surety bonds are the only acceptable methods of payment. If you are a Dubuque County resident and have fallen victim to this scheme, please call their non-emergency line at 563-589-4414. If you live in a neighboring area, please call your respective law enforcement agency.

McGraw-Hill To Cut Jobs

McGraw-Hill, a major publishing company in Dubuque has announced a reduction in employees. McGraw-Hill will be cutting 28 jobs at its’ Dubuque location, but it’s not known when the cuts will take effect. The employees who will lose their jobs work in various capacities within the company. A company spokesman says they’ll be helping the workers with the transition process. Iowa Workforce Development notified officials at Greater Dubuque Development Corporation of the impending cuts. GDDC President and CEO Rick Dickinson who says once they receive written verification from McGraw-Hill of the details of the employees impacted by the cuts they’ll be reaching out to help them find other work within the community. McGraw–Hill is cutting jobs at its’ other facilities across the country and Dickinson says publishing is a very volatile industry right now. At one point McGraw-Hill’s workforce in Dubuque consisted of around 400 people. Before the latest announced cuts that number stood at around 260.

Dubuque Man sentenced For Beating Woman

A Dubuque man who was accused of beating and choking a woman in 2018 is going to prison. Court documents from Cedar Rapids say 28 year old Charles Carter was sentenced to 18 months in federal prison after pleading guilty last August to possessing a firearm as a convicted domestic abuser. In August of 2018 police discovered a gun while investigating a domestic incident involving Carter. Carter had struck a woman in the face and arms causing red marks, swelling, bruising and pain. He then grabbed a towel rack and struck the woman in the face, which caused a red bump on her eyebrow. Carter then choked the woman causing her to blackout and then hit her with a belt. When police arrived they found Carter hiding in the trunk of the victim’s car. Police also found a gun in Carter’s dresser draw in the residence where the assault took place. He admitted the gun was his. Carter was prohibited from having firearms because of two prior convictions for domestic abuse. When he is released, Carter will be placed on three years of probation.

Kerry To Campaign For Biden

Democratic presidential hopeful and former vice-president Joe Biden is bring out one of the big guns to campaign on his behalf in the Key City this weekend. Former U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is scheduled to attend the “We Know Joe” event at Biden’s Dubuque’s campaign office on Main Street at 12:30 Sunday. Also scheduled to speak are California U.S. Congressmen Ami Bera and Lou Correa. If you would like to attend you need to RSVP.

Inmate Stabs Correctional Officer

An inmate at the Wisconsin Secure Program Facility is facing charges after the Grant County Sheriff’s Office was notified that a correctional officer had been stabbed Monday morning. As a result of the investigation it was determined that 47-year old Dexter Ewing, currently housed at WSPF, attacked a 42 year old male Correctional Officer with a “shank” (homemade edge weapon). Ewing attempted to stab the Correctional Officer in the neck, in an attempt to kill him. The victim and another correctional officer were able to disarm Ewing prior to him causing serious injury to the victim. The victim was taken to Gunderson Hospital in Boscobel for treatment of his injuries, which included a wound on his neck and face. He was treated and released. This matter will be referred to the Grant County District Attorney’s Office for a charge of attempted Homicide against Ewing.

Two by Two’s Hockey Night Fundraiser

A Dubuque nonprofit is once again teaming up with the city’s hockey team for a special fundraiser. Founder and CEO,  Kristin Woodward-Vaassen, says Two by Two’s annual Hockey Night Fundraiser with the Dubuque Fighting Saints is Saturday at the Mystique Community Ice Center. Kids can bring their stuffed animals to the game and get a Kindhearted Kids photo with the team mascot. Development Director, Cassie Bird, says the 50/50 raffle will be a big one. Online bidding for the silent auction for great prizes will take place until Saturday afternoon and resumes that evening, in-person only, behind Section 110. The link for tickets is on the Two by Two Education Facebook page. The Fighting Saints take on the Chicago Steel and the puck drops at 7:05 pm.

 

 

Dubuque Man Sentenced On Drug Charges

A convicted felon from Dubuque will be spending two years in federal prison after pleading guilty to a gun charge. In July, 22- year old Johnnie Raymond pled guilty to being a prohibited person in possession of a firearm in federal court in Cedar Rapids. Raymond was among 30 people indicted last summer on federal gun violations. Documents say he was unlawfully in possession of a gun while riding as a passenger in a car that was stopped by police. He was also prohibited from possessing firearms because of a previous conviction of felony crimes involving gang participation and forgery in Dubuque County. He was also a drug user which prohibited him from having firearms. Raymond will be placed on three years of probation once he is released from prison.

Jones County Dangerous Intersection

The intersection of Old Dubuque Road and Highway 151 in Jones County has been too dangerous for too long. That’s, at least, what Jones County Sheriff Greg Graver believes. Graver tells our coverage partners, KCRG-TV, it’s not just local talk fueling that idea: So do the statistics. According to crash reports from the Iowa Department of Transportation, there were 39 crashes at the intersection from 2007 to 2017, two of which were fatal. Added to that number more recently was a third fatal crash on Nov. 6, 2019, in which a woman died after being hit by a semi-truck at the intersection. While Graver said driver error may contribute to some of the crashes, he points to the curved design of the road as another problematic factor. The sheriff argues that it’s time the intersection is shut down for good. Jones County Engineer Derek Snead agrees and said rerouting traffic in and out of Anamosa through a frontage road that runs alongside Highway 151 is the best option. The intersection is jointly owned by Jones County and the City of Anamosa, so the decision on whether or not to close or alter it is in the hands of the Jones County Board of Supervisors and the Anamosa City Council. There will be a public hearing tonight to discuss the intersection and its future. The meeting starts at 7:00 p.m. at the Anamosa Public Library.

Iowa Medical Pot Program

Some lawmakers say they would like to see Iowa’s medical marijuana program expanded during the next legislative session which starts Monday. Governor and state lawmakers met Tuesday to talk about this topic. Some Democrats say the program should add more chronic conditions, eliminate the 3 percent THC cap and allow more dispensaries in the state. The governor vetoed a bill to expand the medical marijuana program last year, but says she is willing to find common ground. MedPharm is urging lawmakers to expand qualifying medical conditions to include PTSD and Alzheimer’s.

 

National Human Trafficking Awareness Day

In recognition of National Human Trafficking Awareness Day, a free screening of a feature-length film about child sex trafficking will be Saturday at the Grand Opera House in Dubuque. “I Am Still Here” tells a fictional story based on true stories of child sex trafficking. The film is presented by the Tri-State Coalition Against Human Trafficking & Slavery. Coalition member Sister Pat Conlan says it’s a great opportunity for the community to be educated about the problem. Adult supervision is advised. Concessions will be available for purchase and free parking will be available in the Iowa Street ramp. Doors open at 9:30 am and the film starts at 10 am. A question-and-answer session will follow. Coalition member Sister Mira Mosel says they are working with hotels and motels to recognize and respond to signs of human trafficking at their facility. A pair of Dubuque  Representatives are co-sponsoring legislation that would mandate human trafficking training for hotels if they want to do business with government officials. For more information on Saturdays film go to www.thegrandoperahouse.com.

“Veterans’ Moment of Truth,” Five Flags

The Veterans National Recovery Center is sponsoring “Veterans’ Moment of Truth,” which will be held at Five Flags Theater this Saturday. The event will feature two civic events: an open forum with candidates for President of the United States, and a debate among candidates to represent Iowa in the US Senate. Topics will be general veterans’ issues, national defense, and foreign policy. All active presidential and senatorial candidates have been invited. Doors open at 8:30 am. A presidential candidate will appear at 9 am. The US Senate debate will run from 10 am to noon. Surrogates and proxies for additional presidential candidates will then have the opportunity to address the audience. Attendance is free and priority be given to veterans and their families. This will be the only veterans-exclusive event prior to the February 3rd Iowa Precinct Caucuses.

Fountain of Youth Grand Opening

The Fountain of Youth Program will be having a Grand Opening on Thursday, January 9th at 11:30 am at their new location of 220 W. 7th Street (rear of the United Way building). Fountain of Youth Executive Director, Caprice Jones, says it’s a great chance to network. City Manager Mike Van Milligen, Dubuque City Councilman, Ric Jones, Dubuque County Supervisor, Dave Baker, United Way Executive Director, Danielle Peterson and others will be there to discuss this years goals. Jones says their Partners in Change program helps youth overcome the stigma of poverty. The Fountain of Youth is a non-profit assisting those 16 year of age and older living in the greater Dubuque area and was established in 2016.

Dubuque Drug Arrests

A short vehicle chase through a mobile home park in Dubuque County Monday led to the arrest of two men on drug charges. The incident began late Monday afternoon after police were tipped off about a man who was “heavily involved in the distribution of methamphetamine.” Police followed a car driven by 34 year old Evan Moran of Dubuque who led them down some back roads and onto U.S. Highway 20 near Epworth, before turning onto North Cascade Road and into the Super 20 mobile home park. As officers attempted to stop Moran he sped away at a high rate of speed through the park. When police finally stopped the car, they located a bag that contained over 104 grams of meth that had been thrown from the vehicle during the chase. Moran is charged with possession of meth with intent to deliver and driving with a suspended license. His passenger, 43 year old Kendall Sheth also of Dubuque is charged with possession of meth and drug paraphernalia.

Two Injured In Dubuque Crash

Two people were taken to the hospital following a two vehicle crash in Dubuque Monday morning. A crash report from the police department says a vehicle driven by 67 year old Beverly Kueter of Dubuque was traveling north on Alpine Street at around 9:15, when she ran the stop sign at the intersection of Alpine and West 5th Street. Kueter’s vehicle then rear-ended a vehicle driven by 27 year old Juanisha Reynolds of Dubuque. Reynolds and her passenger, 35 year old Shawn Willis also of Dubuque were transported to Mercy Hospital where they were treated for their injuries. Kueter was issued a citation for failure to obey a stop sign.

Carnegie-Stout Community Engagement

Officials at the Carnegie-Stout Public Library said that efforts in recent years to increase public engagement with the facility have been successful. Susan Henricks, director at the library, said the organization began the effort in 2015 with the goal of improving the facility and increasing outreach in the community. They created space for a 3D printer, a recording room and offered other amenities. The program also focused on involvement in the community. The library started programs at various grade schools as well as after school programs like the Boys and Girls Club. Henricks tells our coverage partners, KCRG TV, the initiatives also eliminated late fees, which increased library visitors. Other changes to help increase accessibility include checkout of nontraditional items like virtual reality goggles, baking pans, and workout kits. Officials are hoping to get started on their next round of initiatives in the next month. The plan is set to be put together by July and will account for the next three to five years at the library.

High Speed Weekend Chase

A Dubuque man faces a laundry list of charges after leading police on a high speed chase over the weekend, reaching speeds over 80 mph in the downtown area. At around 5:20 Saturday morning an officer attempted to stop a vehicle that had no taillights near the area of East 16th and Jackson Streets. The vehicle was driven by 22 year old Kyle Wood. When the officer turned on his emergency lights, Wood sped away reaching speeds in excess of 80 mph down Bluff Street. Seconds later Wood smashed into a parked vehicle in the 300 block of West 1st. He then jump out of the wrecked vehicle and ran through several yards. Officers finally caught up with Wood in the 50 block of Locust Street. Police found nearly 30 used needles on Wood as well as numerous plastic baggies that contained methamphetamine residue. Wood is charged with eluding, possession of drug paraphernalia, interference with officials acts, operating while intoxicated, driving while barred and numerous traffic violations. He was also served a warrant charging him with 5th degree theft.

Platteville Man Killed In Madison Crash

A Platteville man was killed in a two vehicle accident on Madison’s Beltline early Saturday morning. According to the Dane County sheriff’s office Alex Abing was involved in a crash at around 6:50 on U.S. Highway 12 between Mineral Point and Old Sauk Roads. Abing had to be extricated from his vehicle and died at a nearby hospital. The driver of the other vehicle was transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Westbound lanes on the Beltline were closed for about three hours following the crash.

Manchester Mobile Home Fire

An electrical space heater is being blamed for a fire that damaged a mobile home in Manchester Friday night. Fire fighters responded to the blaze at the Eugene Wulfekuhle residence in the 16 hundred block of 195th Street. Wulfekuhle was not at home at the time and no injuries were reported. It took fire fighters from Manchester and nearby Dundee about two hours to get the fire under control.

Dubuque Man Injured In Crash

A Fennimore man was cited following a two vehicle crash in the downtown area of Dubuque Friday evening. A crash report from the police department says a car driven by 26 year old Matthew Anderson of Dubuque was traveling  north on White Street a few minutes before 5:30, when a vehicle driven by 19 year old Bradley McCartney ran the stop sign at the intersection of White and 16th Street and struck Anderson’s car. Anderson was taken to Finley Hospital where he was treated for his injuries. McCartney was issued a citation for failure to obey a stop or yield sign.

Five Flags Center Referendum

Renovations to the Five Flags Center will be up to a public vote this fall. The Dubuque City Council Monday voted in favor of a September special ballot to be brought before the public. The original goal was to bring the issue before the voters in March but there was a consensus that would be too soon. Councilman Ric Jones said voters need more time. Ward 2 council member, Laura Roussell agreed, noting she liked the option 4/hybrid that the citizen’s commission came up with. Five Flags General Manager HR Cook said he agreed with the council’s decision because the public needs to be informed about the renovation plan proposed which includes an estimated 74-million dollar cost. Councilman Brett Shaw was the lone no vote, voicing his concerns about the overall cost to taxpayers among other questions. The referendum vote will take place September 8th. In other business, the Council unanimously approved the plans, specifications and estimated cost for the Chaplain Schmitt Island Veterans Memorial Project.

 

 

Pets in Parks Ordinance Proposal

The City of Dubuque Park and Recreation Commission will host a public input meeting regarding an ordinance proposal to allow pets in the majority of city parks. The meeting will be held on January 14th, from 6 – 8 pm in the City Council Chambers on the second floor of the Historic Federal Building. The meeting allows residents to share feedback, comments or concerns relating to the proposal with Park and Recreation Commissioners. The City of Dubuque Park and Recreation Commission is considering the ordinance proposal for recommendation to the City Council.  The City Council would have to approve any changes to the current ordinance. For more information, go to cityofdubuque.org/2740/Pet-Friendly-Community.

 

https://www.cityofdubuque.org/2740/Pet-Friendly-Community?fbclid=IwAR2qSOMWnTmH-h7CEKWoU4VulTbgTKhKpNQttFEOyzqdoBH8Opcm8ZZUBwk

Armed Robbery Suspect

Law enforcement in Jackson County have arrested a Miles man involved in an armed robbery. The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office report the armed robbery happened around 8:04 pm Saturday and Garry Evilsizer was arrested around 9 pm Sunday night after authorities stopped his vehicle for having a head-lamp and tail-light out. Officers found clothing that appeared to be identical to those worn by the suspect involved in the Miles Mini-Mart robbery the night before. Evilsizer allegedly demanded cash from the clerk while holding her at knife-point Saturday night. Evilsizer gave authorities a  knife from his vehicle after they asked him if he had one. Evilsizer is being held at the Jackson County Detention Center on charges of Robbery in the 2nd degree, a class C felony, as well as driving without a license.

Cascade Couple Cattle Producers Of The Year

A Cascade couple has been named “commercial cattle producers of the year.” Jason and Lisa Kurt received the honor recently from the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association. The Kurts have approximately 230 cows and finish one thousand head annually. The Kurts have also made improvements to their operation with conservation in mind. EQIP funds have helped the family develop paddocks and a rotational grazing system, and cover crops are grazed on some of the crop acres. Lisa Kurt also serves on the Jones County Agricultural Extension Council.

Dubuque County Traffic Enforcement

The Dubuque County sheriff’s office participated in a statewide traffic enforcement project that began on December 13th and ran through New Year’s Day. Extra effort was placed on stop sign and speeding violations. The goal of the project was to promote traffic safety and remove impaired drivers from the road. Last year 335 people were killed in traffic crashes in Iowa. It was the second highest number of fatalities in the previous five years.

Dubuque Winter Farmer’s Market

Patrons of the Dubuque Winter Farmers’ Market will be shopping for their goods at a new location this weekend. Beginning January 4th,  the market will open at its’ new location inside of Kennedy Mall. What was once a men’s department store will house the 40 vendors for the winter market. The market is located in the west concourse of the mall between Planet Fitness and Shoe Carnival. Farmers, bakers and producers will offer their products every Saturday from 9 am until noon from January through April. The winter farmers market was previously housed in a building that was once occupied by the Colts Drum and Bugle Corps on Central Avenue.

SOUPer Sunday-Convivium

Convivium Urban Farmstead is hosting a special fundraising event to raise awareness about poverty and food insecurity in our community. Co-owner, Leslie Shalabi, says they are partnering with Riverbend Food Bank for SOUPer Sunday on January 26th. Paticipants will select and keep a handmade, ceramic bowl made by a local artist and help themselves to soups and breads donated by the different local restaurants. Salabi says there will be a short program but it’s mostly it’s a fun event. Proceeds from the event, which runs from 4 pm to 6 pm, will go to Riverbend Food Bank and Convivium Urban Farmstead to support programming for low income individuals in Dubuque. For tickets and more information go to the Convivium Urban Farmstead Facebook page.

 

 

 

Biden DBQ Event

Democratic front-runner for President Joe Biden appeared at the University of Dubuque today (Friday) and said he thinks President Trump made a big mistake ordering a for a U.S. airstrike near Baghdad’s airport that killed its top general. Biden says  Iran has already vowed “harsh retaliation”. Biden says the killing of General Soleimani marks a major escalation in the standoff between Washington and Iran. Biden also criticized the administrations lack of a plan once the U.S. pulled out of the nuclear treaty. American defense officials said today nearly 3,000 more Army troops heading to Mideast in wake of US killing of Iranian general. Biden was introduced by Dubuque Congresswoman Abby Finkenauer, who officially endorsed Biden Thursday.

 

 

 

First Baby Of 2020 Born At Finley

The first baby of the new decade in Dubuque was born nearly 4-and-a-half hours into the new year. Finley Hospital says parents Samantha Schumacher and Joshua Kerr welcomed their son Benjamin Dennis Kerr into the world at 4:25 am New Year’s Day. He weighed 7 pounds 9 ounces and was 20 inches long.

Maquoketa Man Pleads Not Guilty

A Jackson County man who is accused of threatening to stab a woman with a kitchen knife last year has pleaded not guilty. 38 year old Marvin Neth of Maquoketa was  arrested in late November and charged with assault while displaying a dangerous weapon and possession of marijuana. The incident happened on November 23rd at a residence that Neth shared with a woman. Neth allegedly threatened to stab the woman with an 11-and-a-half inch knife. The woman, who was not injured, fled the residence and called 911. Neth will next appear in court on January 24th.

Galena Police Investigate Shooting

Police in Galena are investigating a shooting that took place last weekend. A press release issued Thursday by the police department says the incident happened in the 600 block of Gear Street early Saturday morning. No one was hurt, but a vehicle that was unoccupied was damaged by gunfire. Officers did locate one shell casing at the scene.

Legal Pot Illinois Dubuque Police

The sale of marijuana for recreational purposes is now legal in Illinois. Just across the Mississippi River in Dubuque, police aren’t really sure what to expect. Lieutenant Joe Messerich of the Dubuque Police Departments says the department is choosing to take a “wait and see” approach. The biggest concern for the department is people driving over to Illinois, using the drug, and then driving back to Dubuque. Messerich said the department can and will pull people over for impaired driving. Messerich would like to remind Iowans that marijuana products, including CBD, are still illegal in Iowa. The State of Illinois has only licensed 37 dispensaries and those are mainly in the Chicago and Rockford areas. Some of those dispensaries aren’t ready to open, and others are predicted to sell out quickly.

 

Fatal Crash Charges-Dubuque County

A Dubuque man is facing a vehicular homicide charge following a crash that killed a woman and her unborn child. 69-year old John Hoffman is charged with homicide by vehicle, nonconsensual termination of a pregnancy and serious injury by vehicle. The crash happened on November 9th on Highway 52 southeast of Key West. 20-year old Hannah Ruggeberg and her unborn child died. Another 3-year-old child was seriously injured. The complaint says Hoffman was allegedly intoxicated at the time of the crash. Hoffman is being held on a $250,000 cash bond in the Dubuque County Jail. If convicted on all charges, he could face up to 40 years in prison.

New Year’s Shooting Arrest

One person is in custody after a shooting incident that left one man injured in the early morning hours of Wednesday. 28-year old Derrick Timmons was arrested and charged with attempted murder, intimidation with a dangerous weapon, going armed with intent, and possession of a firearm by a felon. At around 3:22 am, Dubuque Police officers responded to a report of shots being fired in the 1000 block of Walnut Street. Officials said the officers witnessed a suspect flee to 1395 Walnut Street. Investigators found a handgun and shell casings in the area and observed a bullet hole on a residence located at 1105 1/2 Walnut Street. Nearby surveillance camera video showed an altercation visible in the street and that shots were allegedly fired by Timmons from the front porch of a nearby house. 25-year old Darrin Heard went to UnityPoint Health Finley Hospital for a gunshot wound to the abdomen. The investigation into the shooting is ongoing.

Almost Home Shelter Volunteers

As it’s getting colder, it’s only highlighting the need for homeless shelters in eastern Iowa. According to our coverage partners, KCRG TV, one shelter in Dubuque could be at risk of closing if it can’t get more volunteers. Almost Home is an overflow shelter inside St. John’s Evangelical Lutheran Church on White Street. It has 12 beds and has already seen 45 men come through since September. Shelter Coordinator Chris Berlin says for volunteers, there are two shifts, 6 pm to 11 pm and 11 pm to 7 am.  The shelter is open seven days a week from 6 p.m. to 7 a.m. If a longer shift doesn’t work for people you can bring someone else to split the shift with. Area nonprofits will refer people to Almost Home, including Dubuque Rescue Mission when it’s shelter is full, United Way, Hillcrest, and even area hospitals. Almost Home is a men’s only shelter so they are looking for male volunteers over the age of 18. To volunteer call 563-495-1353 or email guesthouse@almosthomedbq.org.

 

 

Grant County Sheriff Drive Sober

To help save lives and prevent needless tragedies, the Grant County Sheriff’s Office has joined law enforcement agencies across Wisconsin during the “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” holiday campaign through New Year’s Day. Last year in Wisconsin, alcohol-related crashes resulted in 160 deaths and nearly 33-hundred injuries. While alcohol-impaired drivers are a serious concern, law enforcement faces a growing challenge with drug-impaired drivers – people whose ability to safely operate a motor vehicle is compromised by legal or illegal drugs including prescription and over-the-counter medications.

Dubuque Leisure Services Winter Spring

Online sign up for a variety of winter and spring activities for youth are underway at Dubuque Leisure Services. Dan Kroger, Recreation Division Manager, says almost all ages have programming available. An indoor clubhouse is available twice a week and has many activities for the younger kids. Older kids, 5 to 12 years of age, have many options as well. Kroger says there after school sports programs and adaptive sports for kids with disabilities. To sign up or for more information go to cityofdubuque.org/471/Recreation. Registrations that are mailed, faxed, dropped off or emailed will be accepted starting January 6th.

 

 

Child Porn Arrest

A Darlington man is facing child pornography charges after Law Enforcement Officers with the Darlington Police Department, Lafayette County Sheriff’s Office, and State Department of Criminal Investigation executed a search warrant at a Keep Street residence. The warrant was executed Monday at 8:40 am following an investigation by the Darlington Police Department into alleged possession and distribution of child pornography at the residence.  As a result of the investigation and search warrant, 56-year old Juan Velazquez-Lopez was arrested and jailed on ten counts of possession of child pornography. The Wisconsin Department of Justice Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force and the FBI assisted with the investigation. ​ICE has placed a detainer on Lopez and he remains jailed at this hour.​  The matter remains under investigation and additional charges are possible.

Live Music Crawl

Dubuque Main Street’s third annual Live Music Crawl, through Downtown Dubuque’s Cultural Corridor, will feature nine live bands and musicians on January 24, 2020. The music crawl will start 6:30 pm on Friday, January 24. Exclusive Access ticket purchasing opens January 2 and tickets are limited 240 participants. The tickets can be purchased through (after January 2):
https://downtowndubuque.org/event/live-music-crawl/ or www.facebook.com/dubuquemainstreet Nine downtown establishments will be featuring live music: 7 Hills Brewing Company, the Blu Room, Diamond Jo Casino, Dimensional Brewing Company, The Lift, Riverboat Lounge, Skinny MaGinny’s, The Smokestack, and The Southend Tap. Exclusive Access passes are $20 and limited to the first 250 registrants. The $20 provides trolley transportation between venues, no cover charge, exclusive hors d’oeurves or drink specials, and access to Uber credits. New to 2020, the Music Crawl participants will also be eligible through a passport activity to win a Grand Prize worth $200.

Kwik Care 2020 Partners

For years, Kwik Stop, Dairy Queen and Fazoli’s customers have been a force for change in our community. Since 2008, their spare change has added up to nearly $1.5 million for local nonprofits. Each month, Kwik Care features a local non-profit partner. During each partner’s designated month, all money collected from Kwik Care canisters is donated to the organization. The list of Kwik Care 2020 partners is as follows:

January – Operation New View
February – Dubuque Dream Center
March – Compass to Care, The Mike & Sandy Ernsdorff Childhood Cancer Foundation
April – Riverview Center
May – Boys & Girls Club of Greater Dubuque
June – Two By Two Character Development
July – Veterans Freedom Center
August – Hills & Dales
September – Opening Doors
October – Hospice of Dubuque
November – The Salvation Army
December – Catholic Charities/Magical Kwik Stop Christmas

Kwik Care accepted applications through November 12th from local nonprofits for the Kwik Care program in 2020.

 

Rollover Crash Charges

A report of a rollover crash led to charges being filed against the vehicle’s driver on Saturday morning, according to law enforcement officials. 21-year old Brayton Ragsdale of Maquoketa, was charged with first-offense operating while intoxicated, failure to maintain control, and failure to wear a seatbelt. At around 2:27 a.m. on Saturday, Dubuque County Sheriff’s Office deputies were sent to a report of a one-vehicle crash on U.S. Highway 61 near Merline Lane. Deputies believe that Ragsdale’s vehicle entered the ditch on the west side of the highway while heading southbound. The vehicle then re-entered the highway but lost control again, entering the median causing it to roll. Ragsdale received some injuries in the crash but refused further medical treatment after being evaluated by paramedics. Ragsdale is being held at the Dubuque County Jail.

 

Car Fire

On Friday at approximately 11:15 am the Grant County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of a vehicle fully engulfed in flames on Badger Road near the intersection of Whispering Lane, Jamestown Township. Upon arrival Deputies found a 2009 Jeep Compass owned by Richard Lyons of Dubuque, fully engulfed in flames. Lyons initially was traveling North on Highway 151 when he saw smoke coming from the backseat area of his vehicle. Lyons acted quickly exiting on the Badger Road exit. Lyons was able to pull the vehicle safely off the roadway when the Compass caught fire. Lyons was not injured in the incident.

Shots Fired Case

Dubuque Police have filed charges in a Christmas Eve shots fired case. Police report that 18-year old Earnest Jones Hunt Jr of Dubuque has been charged with attempted murder, intimidation with a dangerous weapon, two counts of going armed with intent, and two counts of carrying weapons. The Police Department responded to 515 Almond Street that evening after receiving a report that the residence received multiple shots. When officers arrived on scene they found three bullets had stuck and penetrated the residence while a forth bullet was found to have impacted the front concrete steps. The residence was occupied by a mother and her two children at the time of the shooting.  City of Dubuque traffic cameras were reviewed and investigators were able to observe  Hunt running from the area at the time of the shooting. Prior to the shooting at the Almond Street address, 19-year old Devin M. Mitchell reported to police that Hunt fired a shot at him, and Mitchell then ran to his girlfriend’s home at 515 Almond. Investigators later received information that Hunt was bragging about the shooting. He is currently in the Dubuque County Jail on December 25 unrelated drug charges.

 

 

Animal Neglect Arrest

Dubuque Police arrested a man early Friday morning who now faces multiple charges in an animal neglect case. 30 year old Cesar Leonel Gonzalez is charged with livestock neglect resulting in death, eight counts of failure to dispose of a dead animal, and multiple counts of livestock neglect. Authorities have removed several animals from a Dubuque farm where more than a dozen other animals were found dead. It all started on December 7th, when Dubuque Police received a report of possible neglect of a donkey at the home at 2663 Roosevelt Street. Animal control found the animal to be in poor condition. On December 11th, an Animal Control Officer returned to the home for a report of animals on the loose. They found several dead animals at the home at that time. Authorities returned to the home on December 13 to check on the animals. While there, they found at least 28 animals, 13 of which were dead, still laying outside. On December 17, Dubuque police removed 26 animals found in poor health from a farm. Police worked with the Dubuque Regional Humane Society and Iowa Equine Rescue and Awareness League.

Bike Rides Dubuque

Dubuque will be a part of the first ‘Iowa’s Ride’ bicycle event next July. The inaugural bike ride will go from Dubuque to Rock Rapids in a 416 mile route across the state, starting July 12th and continuing through July 18th. Keith Rahe, President and CEO of Travel Dubuque says the east to west route is different than RAGBRAI.  The Dubuque County Fairgrounds is looking forward to hosting the riders for the start of the race. Officials in Dubuque are still waiting to hear from organizers of the RAGBRAI who will make the route public on January 25th. It’s possible the city could still be the last stop for riders in the 2020 ride because it will be held the week after Iowa’s Ride. Rahe says they hope to hear from RAGBRAI by the middle of January.

Car – Semi Head On

A Postosi woman was severely injured following a head on accident early Friday morning. At 12:48 am the Grant County Dispatch Center received a report of a car vs. semi head on crash on U.S. Highway 61 and Indian Creek Road. 29-year old Samantha Klein of Potosi was traveling north on U.S. Highway 61 when her vehicle crossed the center line into the southbound lane and struck a 2013 International Semi, owned by Reinhart Transportation, that was driven by 29-year old Kallen Faas of La Crosse. Klein struck the semi head on. Klein was extracted from the vehicle and she sustained severe injuries due to the crash. The crash remains under investigation by the Grant County Sheriff’s Office.

DBQ Winter Farmers’ Market Move

The Dubuque Winter Farmers’ Market will be moving to a new location for the new year. Beginning  January 4th, the market will move to Kennedy Mall’s former Younker’s Men’s Store. The entrance is located on the west side near Planet Fitness. The Dubuque Winter Farmers’ Market  is an all-volunteer driven market, focusing on supporting the regional food system and providing annual funding to farmers through their grant program. The market features homemade and baked goods, meat, cheese, eggs and vegetables. Hours are 9 am to noon on Saturdays through April 25th. The market’s former location, the Roshek Building, is in the process of being sold to Heartland Financial USA and Cottingham & Butler who are expanding.

Group Bringing Special Tool To the Slopes

A snowboarding and skiing group in Dubuque is only in its’ second year, but it’s making a big difference for a smaller community. The group Midwest Free Riders is giving kids a chance to perfect their snow-sports skills. Ben White started the group. While going to high school in Vermont, White was exposed to some of the best snowboarding facilities and coaches. He tells our coverage partners at KCRG TV that he wanted to give kids those same opportunities to improve upon their skills. White started fundraising to purchase what’s called a “big air bag” to help kids with back flips, front flips, corks and rodeos. White says the “big air bag” should keep the kids safe while they try out risky moves. White will unveil the “big air bag’ on Saturday January 11th at Sundown Mountain and Ski Resort in Dubuque.

Dry Dubuque December

Dubuque’s December precipitation with only a few days left is on pace to set a new record. KCRG meteorologist Kaj O’Mara says it’s been above average temperature wise and way below normal for rain and snow. O’mara says besides the lack of precipitation, Dubuque set a new high mark for this week’s holiday. There is rain in the forecast this weekend that could linger until early Monday. O’mara says it has been a very wet year overall despite this month. Dubuque’s average high temperature in December is 30 and the average precipitation for the month is 1.85 inches.

Salvation Army Kettle Totals

The Salvation Army of Dubuque raised $121,076 from the red kettles this year. Overall they have raised $194,357 of their $225,000 goal for the Christmas campaign – which will go through January.  People who would like to donate are encouraged to give online or by mail – The Salvation Army, 1099 Iowa St, Dubuque, 52001.

 

https://centralusa.salvationarmy.org/dubuque/

25th annual Reflections in the Park

A reminder that Hillcrest Family Services’ 25th annual Reflections in the Park, is still going on through January 4th. Drive through Louis Murphy Park anytime from 5 pm to 10 pm daily and enjoy the lights this holiday season. Each night the 25th car will receive a $25 Hy-Vee gift card and Santa will visit every Monday. The annual Louis Murphy Park lights display, presented by Dubuque Bank and Trust, is a significant form of funding for the 30 plus programs and over 45,000 people served by Hillcrest Family Services. You can pick up advanced tickets for $8 at any Hillcrest or DB&T location or pay $10 per car at the gate. For more information, visit reflectionsinthepark.com.