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Amber Alert Update: Burned Remains in Missouri Linked to Missing Iowa Child, Dad

URBANDALE, Iowa (AP) — Authorities say the remains of an infant and an adult found in burned vehicle in Harrison County, Mo., are believed to be those of a missing 9-month-old Iowa boy and his father. Police in the Des Moines suburb of Urbandale had been looking for the child, Logan Habibovic. An Amber Alert issued for him early Wednesday morning said it was believed he’d been abducted by 33-year-old Elvis Habibovic. The alert described a vehicle that authorities say matched the description of the burned vehicle found Tuesday evening in a conservation area of Missouri’s Harrison County. Authorities in the two states are trying to positively identify the remains. Continue Reading

Identity of Woman Killed in Sunday Car Accident Released

The identity of the woman killed in a Sunday car accident on Summer Street and Highway 61 in Burlington has been released. 74 year old Sandra Waggoner of Fort Madison was killed after Burlington Fire Department officials say that she pulled into the intersection at Summer and 61 and was struck by a vehicle heading North on 61 driven by 55 year old William Poland of Burlington. Waggoner died after emergency crews arrived. Three others, including Poland and his wife Regina Poland as well as a 13 year old juvenile in Waggoner’s car were transported from the scene to Great River Medical Center. Iowa State Patrol is investigating the incident. Continue Reading

A missing person poster for Leasure. From KBUR Listener Frank Statler.

Police Find Bicycle Belonging to Missing Burlington Man

Burlington Police are hoping to find clues as to the whereabouts of a missing Burlington man after his bicycle was discovered near West Lake near Hope Haven. 53 year old Steven Leasure was last seen on May 2nd at the Maple Street Circle K, wearing a Dark T-Shirt and Jean shorts, riding a bicycle. The Hawk Eye reports that bicycle was found Monday by a resident at Hope Haven, and sonar-equipped boats have been searching through the lake. Burlington Police Detective Jeff Klein says the department is not ruling out foul play. Continue Reading

Hastert Case Raises Slew of Questions

CHICAGO (AP) — The federal indictment of former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert has raised a long list of puzzling legal questions, including why prosecutors filed banking charges in a case that, at its core, appears to involve extortion and sexual abuse. No defense attorney promptly came forward to publicly rebut the charges, and Hastert might have avoided some embarrassing details becoming public had he negotiated a plea agreement. Some answers could come Tuesday, when the 73-year-old is scheduled to make his first court appearance since a May 28 indictment said he agreed to pay $3.5 million to someone from his days as high school teacher and wrestling coach not to reveal a secret about past misconduct. He’s charged with violating banking laws and lying to the FBI, with each of those two counts carrying a maximum five-year prison term. A look at the arraignment and some of the legal issues in the case:



Legal observers wonder if Hastert violated the old adage about never answering questions without a lawyer present when investigating authorities’ approached him at the end of last year. Continue Reading

One More Case of Bird Flu, US to Begin Importing Eggs from Europe

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa agriculture officials are reporting an additional farm infected with bird flu in Sioux County. It’s the 18th case in the county and was found in a flock of 3,800 birds of various species. An Iowa Department of Agriculture spokesman says he can’t be more specific about what type of farm is infected or what species of birds are involved. It is the 73rd case of bird flu in Iowa. The outbreak has cost the state more than 29 million birds including 24 million egg-laying chickens and 3.8 million pullets, young chickens raised to be egg layers. Continue Reading

Branstad Doesn’t Rule Out Special Session on Education

Governor Terry Branstad says the legislature’s failure to decide how much state aid Iowa’s public schools will get for the 2016/2017 school year is a disappointment. When pressed by reporters Monday, Branstad wouldn’t rule out calling lawmakers back to Des Moines in special session to make the decision. “I’m not going to speculate,” Branstad said. “You all can speculate all you want to, but I’m just going to wait until I see all the bills and try to choose the course of action that I think makes the most sense.” The 2015 legislative session ended Friday and legislators approved a one-and-a-quarter percent increase in general state aid for the school year that starts this fall, plus lawmakers voted to give schools a one-time allotment of 55 million dollars. Continue Reading

City, County Officials Receive Disaster Training Grant

City and County officials will be heading to Maryland next year for specialized disaster training, thanks to a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Des Moines County Emergency Management Coordinator Gina Hardin says that the group will focus on preparing for a very specific disaster scenario during the training. “We proposed that our scenario would be an EF4 or EF5 tornado coming through Burlington or West Burlington,” Hardin told the Burlington City Council during a Monday night meeting, “And, with that, they would put us through some training and talk about our planning and what we do locally, and then put us through an exercise for a few days.” Between 75-80 people from a variety of government entities will be taking part in the training, which runs between June 27th and 30th of 2016. The training will take place at FEMA’s campus in Emmitsburg, Maryland. Continue Reading

San Diego Man Accused of Posing as ‘Twilight’ Actor Gets 10 Years in Prison

NEWTON, Iowa (AP) — A San Diego man accused of posing as an actor from the “Twilight” movies has been given 10 years in an Iowa prison for sexual abuse. The Newton Daily News reports that 34-year-old David LaVera was sentenced Monday in Newton. Authorities say that while LaVera was in Jasper County last spring, he posed as “Twilight” actor Kiowa Gordon and visited two Newton schools. Prosecutors say LaVera inappropriately touched a 14-year-old girl and lured her into his vehicle. The newspaper also reports that a federal judge on Friday rejected a plea deal LaVera made with U.S. prosecutors, saying the punishment wasn’t severe enough. Continue Reading