Fort Madison Man Pleads Guilty to Sex Abuse

A 69-year-old Fort Madison man has made a deal with prosecutors and pleaded guilty to two counts of sexual abuse and one of lascivious acts with a child. The Fort Madison Daily Democrat says Roger Mendez made the pleas on Friday. Prosecutor Clinton Boddicker told Judge John Linn that Mendez also agreed to plead guilty later to three misdemeanors. Police investigator David Doyle says that following Mendez’s arrest in January, several other people came forward with accusations. Doyle says Mendez had victimized seven males, ages 7 to 20. Continue Reading


West Liberty Foods Expands to Chicago ‘Burbs; CEO Says Move Will Not Affect Mt. Pleasant Workers

WEST LIBERTY, Iowa (AP) — West Liberty Foods LLC says it has bought substantially all of the assets of an Illinois company that had filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The Quad-City Times says the purchase of Bolingbrook, Illinois-based Quantum Foods was announced on Monday. The transaction was valued at $12.7 million. West Liberty officials say they expect to begin meat processing operations at the Bolingbrook location within the next 30 days. Quantum Foods filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in February. Continue Reading

DMCo Board to Vote on Jackson Retirement Today

The Des Moines County Board is meeting today(Tues) and one of the things the Supervisors have to consider is the resignation of County Attorney Pat Jackson. 

Assistant County Attorney Amy Beavers has been Acting County Attorney since Jackson went on medical leave more than two months ago.  

Much has been made in one of the local newspapers about Jackson’s record and his way of running his office, but in Beck’s opinion the situation has been overblown. Beck says he hasn’t seen any malfeasance in the County Attorney’s office…which is not to say that Beavers hasn’t found ways to improve the operation.  Beavers has already announced that she’ll handle cases personally…which Jackson did not, in recent memory…and she did not replace her own position when she moved up. Continue Reading


School Board Narrows List of Superintendent Hopefuls

The four semifinalists for the job of Burlington School Superintendent will be interviewed by the Board of Education in private today and tomorrow. At today’s meeting they pick their semi-finalists. At tomorrow’s meeting they will narrow the list from four to two. Both of those meetings start at noon. Friday is the big day. Continue Reading


Heavy Rains & High Winds = Broken Branches & Downed Lines

Heavy rain, causing ponding, popping manhole covers and temporary surface flooding…..and gusty winds, resulting in tree branches falling on power lines and knocking out electricity. (Photo from Eastern Iowa Fireground Photos Facebook)

All of that was the order of the day yesterday(Sun) in southeast Iowa and west-central Illinois. Authorities responded to reports of a large limb and wire down on Madison Avenue; that put about 1200 Alliant Energy customers in the dark for about an hour. A little later, the storm took out a tree near Main and Maple, leaving another 120 residents without power until late afternoon. An Alliant spokesman says more than 100 customers in the Ft. Continue Reading

DMCo Atty. Jackson Resigns

After weeks on medical leave, Des Moines County Attorney Pat Jackson has apparently resigned.  

A story in the Saturday edition of The Hawk Eye…a local newspaper…says Jackson submitted a resignation letter to County Auditor Carol Copeland last Monday, but it wasn’t made public until Friday. According to the newspaper article, Jackson says in the letter that due to medical reasons, he’s retiring on June 30th. Amy Beavers has been serving as Acting County Attorney and she’ll face Trent Henkelvig in the November 4th General Election. Continue Reading


New London Sex Abuse Lawsuit

The Iowa Supreme Court has ruled in favor of the New London school district in a sex abuse lawsuit. The student, called Jan Doe in court action, sued the New London district saying years of sexual abuse by former teacher and track coach Gina Sisk led to emotional problems.

The abuse began in 2000 when the student was 14 and continued through 2006. Doe did not file the suit until six years later, after she got counseling and determined her anxiety and depression were linked to the abuse. The school district asked the that the case be dismissed based on the statute of limitations, but the district court ruled the case should proceed. During the appeal, Doe’s lawyer argued the statute of limitations didn’t begin to run until 2011 when her client discovered her mental problems were related to the earlier abuse. Continue Reading


Juneteenth Day Coming

Tomorrow(Sat) is the first day of summer and it’s also time for a celebration of freedom from slavery for African-Americans. The local N-double-ACP chapter marks the occasion with a Juneteenth party for the whole community at DeEdwin and Gladys White Memorial Park. . The theme of this year’s celebration is “Awakening the Dream.” Two scholarships will be awarded at tomorrow’s(Sat) celebration, which will be held from 10 to 4 at the park on Angular at 5th Street. Continue Reading

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Oquawka Woman Found

An Oquawka woman reported missing yesterday(Thur) has been found. Henderson County Sheriff’s deputies say 73-year old Vivian Palmer was located shortly before 10 last night in Smithfield, in Fulton County. Authorities say she’s okay and has reunited with her family. Continue Reading