Waco Biker Fight Started Over Parking Dispute

Texas police say a weekend shootout involving rival motorcycle gangs that killed nine people and injured 18 apparently began with a parking dispute and someone running over a gang member’s foot. Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said Tuesday that an uninvited group appeared for the meeting of a loose confederation of biker gangs held at a Twin Peaks restaurant on Sunday. He says one man was injured when a vehicle struck his foot. This caused a dispute that continued inside the restaurant, where fighting and then shooting began, before spilling back outside. Continue Reading

Des Moines Man Claims Big Lotto Win

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A Des Moines man has claimed his $1 million Powerball prize with a taped-back-together ticket. Iowa Lottery officials say Pete Kemp showed up Monday to claim his prize. Five numbers on his repaired ticket matched five numbers drawn Saturday night: 24, 29, 38, 48 and 52. But he missed on the Powerball number, 32. Kemp bought his winning ticket at a Cash Saver supermarket. Continue Reading

A Third of Iowa’s Egg-Laying Chickens Impacted by Bird Flu as Virus Continues to Spread

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Two more Iowa turkey farms in Sac County have tested positive for the bird flu and state agriculture officials say they’ve found the virus among a backyard duck flock and a backyard chicken flock, both in Sioux County. The new discoveries announced Monday by the Iowa Department of Agriculture bring to 56 the number of cases reported in the state in 14 counties. The number of turkeys on each farm was not immediately released. About 50 ducks and 12 backyard chickens were reported on the Sioux County farms.

Agriculture economists say bird flu could cost the two states hardest hit, Iowa and Minnesota, nearly $1 billion. The estimates include sales losses to feed suppliers, trucking companies, and processing plants. Continue Reading

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Greater Burlington Partnership to Scale Back Marketing Efforts

The Greater Burlington Partnership will have to scale back efforts to promote the City of Burlington as a direct result of Burlington’s efforts to improve its financial standing. Following several months of discussion, the Burlington City Council last night cut the distribution of Hotel/Motel Taxes to the Partnership. City Manager Jim Ferneau called the cut “very significant” but added that it was part of the shared sacrifice felt by most branches of city government as the city edges its way towards financial stability. “When we did the budget we were anticipating that we would have about $770,000 in overall revenues in to Hotel/Motel Tax, and based on that their reduction was going to be from $340,000 to more like $250,000 range, so close to a $100,000 reduction,” Ferneau told KBUR. Greater Burlington Partnership’s Chelsea Tolle went over how the organization plans to scale back. Continue Reading

Adam Blythe. Courtesy: Des Moines County Jail

Traffic Stop Results in Meth Arrest

A Burlington man was arrested after a traffic stop turned up both Marijuana and Methamphetamine. 22 year old Adam Blythe was stopped for a simple moving violation at around 12:05 am Monday, when the approaching officer smelled Marijuana coming from the vehicle. The officer searched the vehicle and found both marijuana and a quantity of methamphetamine. Blythe is charged with possession of a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance with intention to sell. Continue Reading

Fugitive Coralville Lawyer May Have Gotten Help from Business Partner

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — Investigators suspect a former Iowa lawyer facing fraud charges was getting help from an ex-business partner while he was on the run from the FBI. Search warrant documents unsealed Monday show investigators believe former Coralville attorney Dennis Bjorklund received financial and other assistance from Thomas Harbit, who worked as a substance abuse counselor at Bjorklund’s office. Bjorklund was captured in Colorado in April after five years as a fugitive. He’s charged with defrauding clients and evading taxes. Harbit has been living in Bjorklund’s former Coralville residence. Continue Reading

Former Lawmaker, Anti-Pipeline Activist Arrested After Refusing to Leave Governor’s Office

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A former Iowa lawmaker has been arrested at the state Capitol after he refused to leave Gov. Terry Branstad’s office because he wanted to discuss eminent domain legislation. Iowa State Patrol troopers arrested Ed Fallon on Monday without incident after he waited hours to speak with Branstad in person or by phone. A Fallon spokesman says he faces a simple misdemeanor charge of criminal trespass. Fallon, a former gubernatorial candidate, says he wants Branstad’s verbal support for legislation that would expand rights for Iowa landowners whose property lies along the proposed Bakken pipeline that would transfer oil across the state. He wants the Legislature to approve a measure before adjourning. Continue Reading

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Joshua Royer Gets Life in Prison in Killing of Eddie Cooper Martin

As expected, Joshua Royer was sentenced yesterday to life in prison without the possibility of parole for the August killing of 50 year old Eddie Cooper Martin. Judge Mary Ann Brown handed down the sentence as required by Iowa law for all First-Degree Murder convictions. In addition to the life sentence, Royer must pay the Martin family $150,000 in restitution. The Hawk Eye reports that as Royer was being led away in handcuffs to begin his life sentence, he denied killing Eddie Martin–the first time he denied his involvement. He did not testify at the two-week long trial that ended last month. Continue Reading

US Senator Joni Ernst chats with Burlington State Senator Tom Courtney on Ernst's 99 county tour of the state.

Senator Joni Ernst Makes First Visit to Burlington

Another senator also visited Burlington Saturday, one of our own. Iowa Junior US Senator Joni Ernst visited Burlington for the first time since her election last year. Ernst toured the downtown area with members of the Greater Burlington Partnership, State Senator Tom Courtney, and Mayor Shane McCampbell, examining facade improvements and development taking place downtown. “It’s a beautiful city. The point is to find out what kind of programs are available at the federal level and how they’re helping the local community,” said Ernst. Continue Reading