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Dubuque & Tri-State News

Field of Dreams Vandal Given Deferred Judgment, Avoiding Jail Time

The vandal who drove a truck over the Field of Dreams Movie Site was able to avoid jail time after striking a deal with prosecutors. 21-year-old Austin Pape of Dyersville was given a deferred judgement in Dubuque County Court on Monday. Pape had been charged with Reckless Driving and 2nd Degree Criminal Mischief after the incident in January. In September, he agreed to plead guilty to the criminal mischief charge in exchange for the Reckless Driving count being dropped. He could have still faced up to five years in prison. But the judge instead gave Pape two to five years of probation as part of the deferred judgement. If Pape is able to stay out of trouble during that timeframe, the charge could be dropped from his record. Pape’s attorney says he has already paid restitution to the movie site to cover the $5,000 in damage done. Pape has also completed about 50 hours of community service.


Van Milligen: No Conflict Between Community Foundation, City

Nancy Van Milligen

The head of a Dubuque nonprofit is disputing the claim there’s a conflict of interest between her group and the city. Earlier this month, Iowa’s state auditor completed a review of the city of Dubuque’s finances from fiscal year 2016. As part of that review, the auditor raised concerns about the relationship between the city and the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque. One of those concerns stemmed from the Community Foundation CEO being married to Dubuque’s city manager. But Nancy Van Milligen, who heads up the foundation, says just because she and her husband, Mike, have those jobs doesn’t mean there’s a conflict. Van Milligen says neither she nor her husband personally benefit from the foundation’s relationship with the city. Nancy Van Milligen also points out that she does not personally report to the city in a move aimed at further avoiding potential conflicts. The auditor’s review showed that the city paid the community foundation more than $230,000 for programs in fiscal year 2016.


Dyersville Man Faces Felony Charge for Punching Son

A felony charge has been filed against a Dyersville man accused of punching his son. 36-year-old Peter Triervieler is charged with Child Endangerment Causing Bodily Injury. According to court documents, Triervieler’s son and daughter had been at his home for visitation on November 11. Both children gave interviews to police indicating that Triervieler had punched the boy in the ribs with a closed fist. Police say the child had a red mark under his arm that was still tender. The boy also complained of pain while breathing. An emergency room doctor at the hospital in Dyersville concluded that the injury was the result of a physical assault. A warrant for Triervieler’s arrest was issued last Thursday, and he turned himself in to the Dubuque County Sheriff’s Office Monday morning. His initial court appearance has not yet been scheduled. If convicted on the charge, Triervieler could face up to five years in prison.


Recount Ordered in Clayton County Legislative Race

House District 55

A legislative district that includes part of Clayton County is one of two in Iowa that will have its votes recounted. House District 55 covers the northwestern portion of Clayton County, as well as parts of Fayette and Winneshiek counties. After an initial canvas of votes, Republican incumbent Michael Bergan led Democrat Kayla Koether by just seven votes. Koether has requested that the votes from Clayton and Winneshiek counties be recounted. The recount will be conducted by a three-person board. Each candidate can appoint on member, with the third being agreed on by the two sides. The recount will be done next Tuesday morning at the Winneshiek County Courthouse in Decorah. The other recount will take place in House District 82 in the southeastern part of the state.


Iowa State Patrol Updates Likely Cause of Crash Involving Dyersville Semi Driver

An investigation into a fatal crash involving a driver from Dyersville has revealed that he was trying to avoid the crash. Back on November 9, a semi being driven by 34-year-old Adam Nurre of Dyersville collided with a pickup truck on US Highway 30 in a rural portion of Tama County. The driver of the pickup, 38-year-old Tamie Cockrell of Van Horne died as a result of the injuries she suffered in the crash. Initially, the Iowa State Patrol reported that Nurre had drifted into the oncoming lane of traffic. But after further investigation, the State Patrol now says it was Cockrell who was across the center line prior to the crash. A release from the agency says both drivers took “evasive action,” but were unable to avoid the crash. A spokesman for the State Patrol says that’s likely the reason that Nurre’s semi was in the oncoming lane.


Dubuque Salvation Army Chapter Launches Kettle Campaign

It may still be five entire weeks until Christmas, but the Dubuque chapter of the Salvation Army has already launched their annual kettle campaign. Bell ringers began staking out positions in front of various Dubuque businesses on Friday, and will be there through Christmas Eve. Between the kettle campaign and its mail appeal, the army is hoping to raise just shy of $230,000 this year, according to Captain Matt Phelps. The Christmas campaigns are the local Salvation Army’s largest fundraiser of the entire year. The army is always looking for volunteers to fill bell ringing shifts. With red kettles positioned at dozens of Dubuque-area businesses, Phelps says there’s always a spot for someone who wants to bell ring. This is the first Red Kettle Campaign for Phelps in Dubuque. He and his wife, Emily, took over leadership of the local Salvation Army chapter in August, following the retirement of Majors Tom and Kay Mason.


Big Opening Weekend at Sundown

Tri-State snow enthusiasts didn’t waste any time taking advantage of last weekend’s snow and chilly weather. A big crowd of skiers and snowboarders headed to Sundown Mountain for its opening weekend, which kicked off Friday afternoon. As we told you last week, this is the earliest Sundown has been able to open in several years. Sundown General Manager Mark Gordon says a lot of factors came together to allow the resort to open so early. The pre-Thanksgiving opening is a significant change from the past couple of years, when warmer temperatures didn’t allow Sundown to open until closer to Christmas. Greg Kubitz has been skiing recreationally for more than 50 years and was one of the first patrons at the mountain on Friday. The early opening gives him hope of breaking a personal record this season. It’s not yet known exactly how many people visited Sundown over the opening weekend. Gordon says those who did were able to get to more of the mountain than on past openers. About half of their territory was available.


Mobile Home, Grain Bin Destroyed in Weekend Fires

A grain bin and a mobile home were destroyed in separate fires across the Tri-States this weekend.
The first fire was reported a little after 6:30 Saturday morning at a mobile home in the Leisure Lake area southeast of Bernard. Firefighters from Bernard and LaMotte were called to the home, which is described as a “total loss.” The cause of that fire is still being investigated.
The second fire happened late Saturday night at a farm about a mile and a half north of Rickardsville. County sheriff’s deputies and firefighters from Holy Cross were dispatched to the area at about 10:15 PM on a report of a grain bin on fire. The bin and its contents were destroyed, causing a loss of about $50,000. The cause of that fire hasn’t yet been determined, though the Sheriff’s Department says it is not considered suspicious.


Four Dubuque Recruits Among Camp Dodge Evacuees

Iowa Law Enforcement Academy (Courtesy: KCCI-TV)

Four police academy students from the Dubuque area were among the nearly 60 people treated for carbon monoxide poisoning in suburban Des Moines yesterday. Firefighters were called to the Iowa Law Enforcement Academy at Camp Dodge after people began falling ill. A building within the academy was evacuated and those showing symptoms were taken to area hospitals. Among those hospitalized were three Dubuque Police Department recruits and one deputy candidate from the Dubuque County Sheriff’s Department. All four are expected to be OK.


Suspected Burglars Still Loose After Chase Through Three States

Suspected burglars are still on the loose after evading authorities from all three of the Tri-States yesterday. At about 1:00 PM, the Grant County Sheriff’s Department was called about an attempted burglary at a home on Bluff Road in the far southwestern part of the county. The homeowner had confronted the intruder, who then left. But the suspects are believed to have successfully broken into another nearby home. After the initial report, Dickeyville Police were called to try to find the suspect vehicle. It was spotted a few minutes later near Kieler, and a high speed chase began, with the suspects heading south on US Highway 151. They eventually crossed the bridge into Iowa, where Dubuque Police continued the chase until the vehicle crossed the Julien Dubuque Bridge into Illinois. Several other agencies picked up the chase there, but the vehicle was lost near Elizabeth. The vehicle is described as a grey Chevy Equinox with no front license plate. At least two people were inside. Anyone who sees the vehicle should contact Grant County Crimestoppers or a local law enforcement agency.


Zwingle Woman Arrested for Drunk Driving After Crash on Julien Dubuque Bridge

We’ve learned a few more details about a crash that closed the Julien Dubuque Bridge early this morning. According to East Dubuque Police, a pair of westbound vehicles collided on the approach to the bridge a few minutes before 1:30 AM. The lead car had to stop due to construction work being done on the bridge. The trailing vehicle, being driven by 25-year-old Christine Oberbroeckling of Zwingle, didn’t stop in time and rear-ended the first car. Oberbroeckling has been charged with Driving Under the Influence and Failing to Reduce Speed to Avoid an Accident. Two of the people in the other vehicle were taken to hospitals in Dubuque to be treated for unknown injuries. The crash closed the bridge for about an hour.


Second Chances Common Among Iowa Work Release Inmates

Kolthoff (Courtesy: CorrectionalNews.com)

Administrators in Iowa’s corrections system are taking time to explain some of their procedures after a Dubuque work release inmate escaped from the program for a second time. 25-year-old Tremaine Walton was taken back into custody following a traffic stop last week. He’d been on the run from the Elm Street Correctional Facility for about three months. This comes after Walton spent more than a year at large after previously escaping the work release program in 2016. Ken Kolthoff is the director of Iowa’s First Judicial District, which includes Dubuque. He says the work release program is designed to ease an inmate’s transition from prison to normal life. Kolthoff says that of the 8,000-9,000 inmates in Iowa’s prisons, the vast majority will eventually be released. According to Kolthoff, it’s not uncommon for those who violate their work release to end up back in the program later. Kolthoff says situations like Walton’s are incredibly rare. Walton had an Escape charge added to his rap sheet following his arrest last week. If convicted, he could have another five years added to his sentence.


Sundown Mountain to Open Friday

A snow machine sprays artificial flakes at Sundown Mountain earlier this month (Courtesy: Sundown).

A Dubuque area ski area will be able to open not just on time, but ahead of schedule this year. Sundown Mountain has announced that it will open for the season on Friday afternoon. Sundown managers typically say they aim to be open sometime in the days following Thanksgiving. But it’s been several years since they’ve been able to start the season before the calendar turns to December. Not only is the mountain opening earlier than in recent years, Gordon says a larger portion of their area will be available than during previous opening weekends. While most people dread the onset of winter, Gordon says his business aims to attract the exceptions. Beyond the ski areas, Sundown has also made some improvements to its lodges to bring in people who may never get out on the slopes. According to KDTH’s story archives, it’s been four years since the last time Sundown was able to open in the month of November.


Grassley Nominated for Senate President Pro Tempore

Grassley

One of Iowa’s US Senators will move to the third place in the presidential order of succession early next year. Charles Grassley will become the Senate’s President Pro Tempore when the new Congress convenes in January. Grassley’s fellow Republican Senators unanimously nominated him for that position this week. The position has historically been given to the most senior member of the Senate’s majority party. After assuming that position, Grassley will follow only the Vice President and the Speaker of the House in the line of succession to the presidency. Grassley was first elected to the Senate in 1980 after serving three terms in Congress. Between his time in Congress and the Iowa Legislature, Grassley has held public office for nearly 60 years.


ATV/UTV Committee Meets in Cascade Tonight

The first public meeting of a citizen committee that is looking into whether or not all-terrain vehicles will be allowed on Dubuque county roads will be held this evening. The committee is made up of people both for and against the idea, as well as several county officials. They are currently gathering information on the pros and cons of allowing ATVs and UTVs on county roads. A report by the committee is expected to be completed in January and submitted to the county supervisors. They will ultimately decide whether ATVs and UTVs can use county roads. The meeting will be held at 5:30 PM at Cascade City Hall. The committee has already had a meeting, but this is the first that the public can attend.


Theisen's Gives Out $350,000 Through Annual Grant Program

A Dubuque-based retailer has awarded $350,000 in grants to non-profit organizations across Iowa and Wisconsin. The annual Theisen’s “More for You” community grant program recently distributed awards to almost 270 different groups located in communities with a Theisen’s store. The grants are intended to help those groups serve the “basic needs” of those in their community. Those needs include shelter and education. The awards are expected to benefit more than 700,000 people in two dozen communities. The largest of the grants was a nearly $4,800 award given to Camp Albrecht Acres to help replace the roof of the Hawk Lodge. The “More for You” community grant program is managed by the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque.


Northern Iowa Men Face Drug Charges After Dyersville Traffic Stop

A pair of men from northern Iowa are facing drug charges after being stopped by police in Dyersville. Early Wednesday morning, police stopped a car just west of Dyersville for speeding and having a defective muffler. During the traffic stop, officers say they could see a marijuana cigarette inside the car. The driver and passenger were arrested and the vehicle was searched. Among the items found by police were another two pounds of marijuana, about two grams of a white powder that tested positive for methamphetamine, a meth pipe, and about $8,200 dollars in cash. The driver, 35-year-old Nicolas Bradley of Humboldt, and his passenger, 36-year-old Ian Stevenson of Goldfield, have each been charged with Possession of Marijuana with Intent to Deliver, second offenses of Possession of Meth, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. They’re currently being held in the Delaware County Jail.


Downtown Dubuque Road Work Nearly Complete

Drivers should begin having an easier time getting around downtown Dubuque over the next week. That’s because some road closures that have been in place for the past several weeks will be coming to an end. Civil Engineer Jon Dienst tells us intersections involving Central Avenue, White Street, 17th Street, and 22nd Street will all be back open by Thanksgiving. As for 17th Street, it will also be opening back up between Elm Street and Central. Dienst says those projects are the last of what he calls the “major construction” within the city. The work happening on White Street and Central Avenue has been a joint project between the city and the Iowa Department of Transportation. The DOT is bringing the condition of those streets up before they become city property when the Southwest Arterial is finished. Dienst says city crews were largely able to work around or through this fall’s rainy weather. Some of the same repairs down on White Street this year will be performed on Central Avenue next spring and summer.


Kennedy Mall Owner's Search for Younkers Replacement Continues

More than six months after one of the Kennedy Mall’s anchor stores announced it was closing, the search for a replacement continues. Dubuque’s Younkers store was one of eight stores across Iowa that was shut down earlier this year. The closure was announced in mid-April, and the store closed its doors for the final time at the end of August. Since then, Cafaro, the mall’s parent company, has been looking for something to fill the former Younkers space. Cafaro spokesman Joe Bell says that process is still ongoing. Younkers had occupied two of the mall’s larger retail spaces. Bell says multiple possible replacements are being looked at, from a variety of sectors. Bell says there’s no timetable for securing or announcing what might move in to the space Younkers left behind. Younkers had been one of Kennedy Mall’s original stores in the when it opened in 1968.


Prairie Farms Fined Over Air Quality Violations at Clayton County Facility

A dairy company has been hit with a $100,000 fine over air quality violations at its facility in Clayton County. As part of an agreement with the Iowa Attorney General and Department of Natural Resources, Prairie Farms has agreed to that fine, and to install more than a million dollars in pollution control equipment at its plant in Luana. The state agencies had accused Prairie Farms of committing air quality violations over a 12 year period. According to the state, the company removed a pollution control device called a baghouse from the Luana facility in 2004. That change was made without the required state permit. After state inspectors noticed the baghouse’s removal, the dairy installed a dryer stack fan in 2016. They’ve stayed in compliance with air quality standards since then. As part of the agreement, Prairie Farms will re-install a baghouse, at a cost of about $1.4 million.


Jochum Tabbed for Senate Leadership Position

Jochum

The State Senator who represents the city of Dubuque will once again serve among her party’s leadership. Democrat Pam Jochum was chosen as one of the party’s six Assistant Leaders this week. Jochum is in the middle of her third term in the Senate. She previously served as the President of that chamber from 2013 until the beginning of the 2017 session. Prior to her time in the Senate, Jochum served eight terms in the Iowa House. The 2019 Iowa Legislative session is scheduled to begin January 14.


Police: Girlfriend Suffers Skull Fractures in Beating by Dubuque Man

Dubuque Police have accused a man of beating his girlfriend so severely that she suffered multiple skull fractures, in addition to several other injuries. 27-year-old Cody Bauer was arrested Monday afternoon after police conducted a welfare check on his girlfriend. According to court documents, Bauer met officers at the door of his home when they arrived. Officers say Bauer initially tried to block them from entering the house, saying that his girlfriend was in the shower. Police instead found her in an upstairs bedroom with obvious injuries to her face and head. Blood was also found in multiple locations around the home. The woman initially told police that she had been injured when she fell, but later admitted that Bauer had caused her injuries. She was initially taken to Mercy Hospital here in Dubuque before being transported to University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics. In addition to the skull fractures, she also suffered broken ribs and a lacerated liver. Bauer has been charged with Willful Injury Causing Serious Injury and Domestic Assault with the Intent to Inflict Serious Injury.


Bomb Threat Causes Dubuque Business Evacuation

Employees at a business in one of Dubuque’s industrial parks were evacuated yesterday morning after a bomb threat. At around 9:45, employees at Rite Hite in Industrial Center West reported the threat. They had found a message that indicated a bomb was in the building. Employees were moved out of the business while authorities conducted a sweep of the building. No bomb was found, and the workers were allowed back inside about an hour later. Police are continuing to investigate.


UPDATE: South Grandview Avenue Closure Postponed

A road closure impacting traffic near Dubuque’s Murphy Park has been pushed back by a day. The city of Dubuque had originally said that South Grandview Avenue would be closed between the intersections with Julien Dubuque Drive and Laurel Street starting this morning. An update from the city now says the closure has been postponed until tomorrow. The closure is still expected to last through the day on Thursday. Private sewer and water service installation is prompting the closure.


Work Release Escapee Caught After 3+ Months on the Run

An inmate from a Dubuque correctional facility was caught last week after more than three months on the run. 25-year-old Tremaine Walton was arrested following a traffic stop in Key West last Friday night. He had gone missing from the work release program at the Elm Street Correctional Facility in early August. That was only about two weeks after he was transferred to the facility. Walton is supposed to be serving a 15 year sentence on burglary and assault charges. He had previously escaped from a work release program in May of 2016. That time, he was able to avoid capture for nearly a full year before authorities caught up with him following a high speed chase. Walton’s now been charged with an additional count of Escape, as well as Providing False Identification Information. That’s because police say he gave officers a fake name prior to being arrested.


Delaware County Sheriff Investigating Farm Fall Death

Authorities in Delaware County are looking into a woman’s death there last weekend. According to the county sheriff’s office, 39-year-old Amy Mullis died following a fall on her farm four miles northwest of Earlville. Emergency crews were called to the farm at about noon on Saturday. Mullis was taken from the farm to the hospital in Manchester, which is where she died. The sheriff’s office has not released any other information about the incident, except to say that they are investigating.


Man Accused of Lying About Drugs Charged with Felonies

Lying about having drugs got a Dubuque man charged with two felonies following his arrest last weekend. Shortly before 3:30 Sunday morning, police stopped a car with an expired registration in the 1400 block of White Street. Officers noticed a strong marijuana smell coming from the car and searched it. A small bag of marijuana was found in the backseat, where 24-year-old Robert Ware-Moore was sitting. The officer took Ware-Moore under arrest, and continued to smell marijuana on him. The officer warned Ware-Moore that he’d face additional charges if found with drugs at the jail. According to a police report, Ware-Moore continued to deny having anything else on him. At the jail, Ware-Moore was searched. Officers found a marijuana cigarette and a bag with about 35 grams of the drug in his underwear. Ware-Moore has been charged with Possession of Contraband in a Correctional Institution and Possession of Marijuana with Intent to Deliver, which are both felonies.


WD Board Approves Bernard Elementary Sale

The Western Dubuque Community School Board meets Monday night.

The saga of the Bernard Elementary School is over…at least as far as the Western Dubuque Community School District is concerned. The WD school board voted last night to accept a $41,200 bid from a Texas-based trust for the former school building. No one from the trust attended the meeting, and no comments were given during a public hearing the district was required to hold prior to approving the sale. WD Superintendent Rick Colpitts wasn’t surprised that no one wanted to offer additional thoughts. Colpitts believes the building’s sale is a positive on multiple fronts. From the district’s perspective, it was able to get some money out of the sale and will no longer have to pay to maintain a building it’s not using. From a community standpoint, the building could now potentially be used in a way that will serve the Bernard community better than an empty school. Bernard Elementary has sat vacant for nearly a year and a half. Students were dismissed from the building for the final time in May of 2017, about three months after the school board voted to close the school due to declining enrollment. It’s still unclear what the KSSB Trust plans to do with the former school building. No one from the trust attended the school board meeting.


Finkenauer "Ready to Get to Work"

Finkenauer

Nearly a week removed from her Election Night victory, Dubuque’s next representative in Congress is ready to get to work. Democrat Abby Finkenauer was elected to Congress in Iowa’s 1st District last week. The district covers most of north-eastern Iowa, including all of KDTH’s listening area in Iowa. Finkenauer, who served two terms in the Iowa Legislature before making the jump to federal office, says that while she enjoyed the thrill of winning her race, she’s eager to begin her duties in Washington. When asked what issues she’ll tackle first, Finkenauer pointed to health care and workforce. Finkenauer is one of two Iowa women who were elected to Congress last week, along with new 3rd District representative Cindy Axne. The two of them, along with Senator Joni Ernst, bring a 50/50 gender balance to Iowa’s delegation to Washington. With Finkenauer and Axne’s election, Iowa becomes the sixth US state with at least half of its seats in Congress occupied by women.


Police: Person Responsible for Fennimore School Threat "Identified"

Authorities in southwest Wisconsin say they’ve located the person who made a threat against a local school. Police in Fennimore posted to Facebook this morning that they have identified the person responsible for a threat at the local middle and high school last week. On Wednesday, a bomb threat was found written on the wall of a bathroom at the school building. Authorities said at the time, and have reiterated, that they don’t believe the threat was credible. The posting from the police department says the person responsible has been referred to juvenile authorities “to be held accountable.” It’s not clear if that means the person has been arrested or is yet facing any charges. We contacted Fennimore Police for clarification, but have yet to hear back.


State Patrol: Dyersville Man Involved in Fatal Semi Crash

A semi driver from Dyersville was involved in a weekend crash that left one person dead. According to the Iowa State Patrol, 34-year-old Adam Nurre was driving his semi east on US Highway 30 in rural Tama County at around 10:30 Friday night. Authorities say Nurre’s truck veered over the center line for an unknown reason. That’s where it collided with a pickup being driven by 38-year-old Tamie Cockrell of Van Horne. She died as a result of the crash. A crash report doesn’t say whether Nurre was injured, or if he was charged or cited with any traffic violations. The State Patrol is still investigating.


Arrangements Set, Memorial Proposed for Field of Dreams Owner

Stillman (Courtesy: Field of Dreams Movie Site)

Funeral arrangements have been finalized and a memorial has been proposed for the owner of the Field of Dreams Movie Site who died last week. 46-year-old Denise Stillman passed away on Wednesday due to complications from a rare form of cancer. According to an online obituary, a celebration of Stillman’s life will be held at the movie site on Saturday, December 1. All “friends of the Field” are welcome, according to the obituary. A more private family service will be held the following week. In addition, Stillman’s colleagues at Go the Distance Baseball, the movie site’s parent company, have announced plans to permanently honor her at the field. The company has launched an online fundraising campaign to collect $10,000 for the creation of a memorial for Stillman at the movie site. As of Monday morning, they were already about one-third of the way toward that goal.


Bernard Elementary Sale Could Be Finalized Tonight

Bernard Elementary School

Nearly a year and a half after dismissing students for the final time, a former Dubuque County school building could have a new owner. The Western Dubuque school board is scheduled to discuss, and potentially approve, a bid for the former Bernard Elementary School at its meeting tonight. The board voted to close the school due to declining enrollment in February of 2017, and the final day of classes was held that May. The nearly 15-thousand square foot building has sat empty since then. This past September, the WD board voted to begin the process of selling the building. Four bids were received. Last month, the board voted to move forward with the highest bid, a $41,000 proposal from a trust based in Texas. The board is legally required to hold a public hearing before approving that bid. That hearing will be held at the board’s meeting in Farley tonight.


May Discusses Plans for County Attorney Role

May

Dubuque County’s new top prosecutor expects his office to have less of a “top-down” operation once he takes over. CJ May III was elected to be the next County Attorney earlier this week, outpacing opponent Scott Nelson by about 7-thousand votes. May has more than 30 years’ experience in private practice and has also previously served as a county magistrate. He tells KDTH he wants to see more collaboration in the attorney’s office. May will replace Ralph Potter, who announced last year that he would retire, rather than seek another term as County Attorney. May says Potter provided many years of great service to the county. May will be sworn in after the 1st of the year.


UPDATE: Water Service to Be Restored in East Dubuque, Boil Order Issued

Water service is expected to be restored in the city of East Dubuque this afternoon, but the city is urging residents to boil their water before use. A water main break this morning forced the water to be shut off to the entire city while emergency repairs were being made. An update from the city now says that those repairs have advanced enough that the water will be turned back on, but a boil order will be in effect until further notice. Residents are urged to boil water before using it to drink, cook, or brush their teeth.


O'Mara: Cold Temps Could Be Good Sign for Thanksgiving

O’Mara

The colder than normal temperatures that have gripped the Tri-States this week could actually be good sign. KCRG meteorologist Kaj O’Mara tells us that colder conditions leading into the Thanksgiving holiday usually mean that there won’t be any significant storms to impact travel that weekend. That’s because cold conditions usually don’t allow much moisture to develop. O’Mara says outlooks currently point toward a drier and warmer weather pattern moving into the Tri-States for the latter part of November. There’s more evidence to suggest that an El Nino system will dominate the upcoming winter. We’re currently forecast to have high temperatures in the 30s or upper 20s through the middle of next week. Normal highs this time of the year are closer to 50 degrees.


Reynolds, Finkenauer Among Women Pushed by "Pink Wave"

Reynolds, Finkenauer

Some of the Iowa women vaulted into office by the so-called “pink wave” are encouraged by the success of female politicians across the country. Female candidates fared very well in elections nationwide on Tuesday, and nowhere moreso than here in Iowa. Among the notable wins by women are Governor Kim Reynolds winning a full term, Democrats Abby Finkenauer and Cindy Axne picking up Congressional seats, and a total of 46 women being elected to the Iowa Legislature. Reynolds says she hopes the trend continues. As for Dubuque’s Finkenauer, she’s still soaking in her win over incumbent Republican Rod Blum. She was blown away by the group of more than 300 supporters who turned out to her victory party. But now Finkenauer’s focus will shift from campaigning to preparing to take office. That includes putting together a staff. While Senator Joni Ernst became the first Iowa woman elected to Congress in 2014, Finkenauer and Axne are the first females elected to serve Iowa in the House of Representatives.


East Dubuque Without Water Service Due to Main Break

A water main break will keep residents of East Dubuque without water service for much of the day today. According to an email from the city offices, emergency repairs began at about 8:00 this morning. As the repairs are being performed, water service has been shut off to the entire city. It’s expected that the city will be without water for most of the day today, until the repairs are complete.


Vote Could Impact Greyhound Racing In Dubuque

It’s still a bit too early to say how a vote down south will impact greyhound racing in Dubuque. On Tuesday, voters in Florida approved a measure that would phase out greyhound racing in that state by 2020. Florida is home to 11 of the 17 greyhound tracks across the country. Iowa Greyhound Park general manager Brian Carpenter says while the Dubuque operation will surely be impacted, it’s too early to say to what extent. Even when greyhound racing goes away in Florida, residents there will still have a way of betting on the races in Dubuque by going online. The Iowa Greyhound Park operates from May through the beginning of November and Carpenter says during the winter months trainers have to go to tracks in states like Alabama, Texas and West Virginia to run their dogs. The Dubuque park runs on a subsidy from Q Casino, but that only last for another three years. After that the track has to be self-sustaining. Carpenter says this season the track brought in more than two million dollars, based mostly on their live simulcasting.


CEO of Field of Dreams Movie Site Parent Company Dies 

The leader of the Field of Dreams Movie Site has died. Denise Stillman passed away on Wednesday due to complications from a rare form of cancer, according to a posting on the movie site’s Facebook page. Stillman was a part of the group that purchased the field from its original owners, the Lansing family, in 2011. From there, she helped to found Go The Distance Baseball, the company that now oversees the operation of the movie site. During Stillman’s time at the field, she helped to increase access to the filming location, opening up the farmhouse to tours. Stillman also helped create the “Team of Dreams” event that brings baseball Hall of Famers and thousands of visitors to the field each Labor Day weekend. According to the posting, Stillman left succession plans in place in the event of her death. Go the Distance’s new leaders say they will continue to work toward Stillman’s vision of a state of the art baseball/softball tournament complex at the Field of Dreams site.


Colesburg Man Charged in October Hit-and-Run

An arrest has been made in a Clayton County hit-and-run crash from last month. 25-year-old Travis Fangmann of Colesburg has been charged with a 3rd offense of Operating While Intoxicated, Leaving the Scene of a Serious Injury Accident, and three traffic citations. According to the Clayton County Sheriff’s office, deputies were called after a two-vehicle crash just north of Colesburg on October 20. The sheriff’s office now says that Fangmann rear-ended another vehicle, sending into the ditch, where it rolled over. The driver of that car was initially taken to the hospital in Guttenberg, then airlifted to University Hospitals in Iowa City. Deputies found Fangmann lying in a ditch almost two miles north of the crash scene. He claimed that he had hit a deer, which disabled his vehicle.


Tri-States Could Get First Snow Tonight

It’s entirely possible that the Tri-States will see their first dusting of snow tonight or tomorrow. Our weather coverage partners at KCRG-TV are currently showing a 60 percent chance of light snow during the overnight hours. Meteorologist Kaj O’Mara says whatever falls will likely begin late tonight and continue through much of tomorrow morning. It’s not a guarantee that the snow will be measurable. There’s also a chance of snow in the forecast for Monday, though O’Mara is less confident about whether it will become a reality. High temperatures are expected to stay in the 30s for another week. Those readings are significantly below normal for this time of year. Current outlooks have the weather in the Tri-States warmer and drier towards Thanksgiving and late November.


Weather Service to Begin Issuing Snow Squall Warnings

There is a new kind of winter warning that will alert people to small, but strong, snow systems. Beginning this winter, the National Weather Service will begin issuing Snow Squall Warnings. A “snow squall” is a very narrow band of moderate to heavy snow that can significantly reduce visibility and make driving dangerous. The systems are similar to fast-moving thunderstorms, except they bring snow rather than rain. The weather service’s Snow Squall Warnings will last for less than an hour, a much shorter time period than other winter warnings or advisories. The warning will cover only the snow squall and the area it’s moving into, rather than entire counties. During Snow Squall Warnings, travel should be avoided unless absolutely necessary.


Walker Concedes to Evers

It’s now official: Wisconsin will be getting a new governor. Scott Walker conceded to challenger Tony Evers yesterday afternoon. The Republican incumbent had held off on conceding because the race was decided by only about 31-thousand votes. But his campaign decided on Wednesday that there were not enough votes in play to change the outcome. The Walker camp had previously expressed concern about two thousand absentee ballots in Milwaukee that had been reconstructed due to errors or damage. In a statement, Walker says he has offered the full support of his staff and Cabinet to Evers as he begins the transition. Evers is slated to be sworn into office January 7.


Election 2018: Finkenauer Wins in 1st District, Highlighting Big Night for Female Candidates

Dubuque State Representative Abby Finkenauer greets supporters after winning election to Congress.

If the Election Night results from the state of Iowa are any indication, the future is indeed female. Women won races for governor, Congress, and numerous statehouse seats in midterm balloting. Incumbent Governor Kim Reynolds became the first woman elected to that position, narrowly winning a full term over Democrat challenger Fred Hubbell. And for the first time in the state’s history it will be sending a woman to the US House of Representatives. But not just one woman…two of them. Democrats Abby Finkenauer of the 1st District and Cindy Axne of the 3rd District each defeated Republican incumbents to claim seats in Congress. Finkenauer and her supporters celebrated at Seven Hills Brewing in Dubuque’s Historic Millwork District. Finkenauer totaled about 51% of the votes cast, compared to 46 percent for her opponent, incumbent Rod Blum. Blum did not appear at a Peosta event thrown by his campaign, but did send out a statement calling serving in Congress a “uniquely American opportunity” and an “honor.”


Election 2018: Reynolds Retains, Walker and Rauner Ousted

Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds greets supporters and reporters in Des Moines late Tuesday night.

As for Reynolds, she was able to eek out victory over a closing Hubbell, 50% to 48%. With the victory, Reynolds becomes the first woman ever elected as governor of Iowa. She took the position after her predecessor, then-Governor Terry Branstad, stepped down to become the US Ambassador to China in May of last year.

In Wisconsin, the Scott Walker era appears to be over, though the results of the election are not settled just yet. Democrat challenger Tony Evers has been declared the winner of the race, but only by about 29,000 votes, which is just more than one percent of the ballots cast. Walker has not conceded the race, with a spokesman for his campaign saying they’ll wait for military ballots to be counted and an official canvass before making a decision. Walker will only be able to ask for a recount if the difference narrows to less than one percent of the votes cast.

In Illinois, voters rejected Republican incumbent Bruce Rauner, instead choosing billionaire businessman JB Pritzker. Rauner’s time in office was marred by a record-long budget standoff with the Democrat-controlled state legislature. Pritzker has a net worth of around $3.5 billion, and he’s estimated to be the second-wealthiest person ever elected to major office in America, behind former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg.


Election 2018: Democrats Re-Take Control of Dubuque County Offices

Democrats have won back control of all Dubuque County offices. Incumbent Jay Wickham was re-elected to another term on the county’s Board of Supervisors. He’s expected to be joined there by fellow Democrat Ann McDonough. Republican incumbent Daryl Klein finished third in the balloting, less than 1,000 votes and just a single percentage point behind McDonough.

Democrat CJ May III will be the next Dubuque County Attorney. He won about 58% of the vote, and bested Republican Scott Nelson by nearly 7,000 ballots.

County Recorder John Murphy was re-elected with about 57% of the vote.

County Treasurer Eric Stierman was unopposed, and County Auditor Denise Dolan was not up for re-election, meaning Democrats will retain those two offices as well.


Election 2018: Incumbents Largely Retain Tri-State Legislature Seats

Only one of the state legislature seats that represent Dubuque County changed control in last night’s election. In State Senate District 29, Dyersville Republican Carrie Koelker upended two-term incumbent Democrat Tod Bowman of Maquoketa. Koelker won by just more than 2,000 votes to flip the district, which covers all of Jackson County and portions of Dubuque and Jones counties, to Republican control.

Among state House races, incumbents Chuck Isenhart, Shannon Lundgren, and Andy McKean all won re-election. Isenhart, who represents the northern half of the city of Dubuque, won a sixth term in the Legislature. Republicans Lundgren and McKean represent portions of the western part of Dubuque County. Lundgren emerged from a close race with fellow Peosta resident Nancy Fett, winning again by about 2,000 votes. McKean easily defeated political newcomer Joe Oclon of Bellevue, receiving nearly 70% of the vote.

In House District 99, the one vacated by Abby Finkenauer, fellow Democrat Lindsay James earned 60% of the vote to defeat Republican Pauline Chilton in what was the first run for office for either woman.

In Wisconsin, Republican incumbents Travis Tranel and Todd Novak were re-elected to the State Assembly. Tranel won easily over Mike Mooney of Platteville, picking up 59% of the vote. Novak won a much closer race, topping 2016 opponent Jeff Wright by just 300 votes. In Senate District 17, fellow Republican Howard Marklein also won another term, defeating Lafayette County Supervisor Kriss Marion 54% to 45.

As for Illinois, Republicans appear to have retained the seats that represent Jo Daviess County. Current State Representative Brian Stewart easily defeated Democrat David Simpson to move into the Senate District 45 seat. Stewart won by more than 11,000 votes. In the race to represent Stewart’s old district, Andrew Chesney of Freeport defeated Nick Hyde of Galena by about 8,000 votes.


Election 2018: 1st District Race Between Blum, Finkenauer Likely to Draw National Attention

Today is Election Day, and while there are dozens of races on the ballots across the Tri-States, likely the one that will draw the most attention is in the Congressional district that includes Dubuque. That’s where incumbent Republican Rod Blum is facing a stiff challenge from state lawmaker Abby Finkenauer in his bid for a third term. Both parties have identified the seat as a “must win” in the larger competition for control of the US House. Blum has been called the most vulnerable incumbent, but he says he’s familiar and comfortable in the underdog role. Blum believes that an improving economy will be what voters have in mind when they cast their ballots. As for Finkenauer, she’s asking voters to consider what – not just who – they’re voting for. Finkenauer believes the race will come down to which campaign does the better job of getting voters to the polls. The 1st District race is essentially the only competitive Congressional race in the Tri-State area. Democrats Cheri Bustos of Illinois and Ron Kind of Wisconsin are both expected to handily win their races. Each state does have a competitive governor’s race, as Republican incumbents look to hold off challenges from the left. In Iowa, Republican Kim Reynolds is seeking a full term against businessman Fred Hubbell. Wisconsin’s Scott Walker is seeking a third term, but state schools supervisor Tony Evers is giving he a strong challenge. In Illinois, Bruce Rauner is hoping to become the first multi-term Republican governor in 25 years. He faces businessman JB Pritzker.


Election 2018: Contested Legislative Races Throughout Tri-States

Here in the city of Dubuque, both Iowa House seats are contested. Republican Pauline Chilton and Democrat Lindsay James are running to take over the 99th District seat that Abby Finkenauer gave up to run for Congress. In the 100th District, Democrat Chuck Isenhart seeks his 6th term in office. He’s opposed by Republican Hank Linden, a former member of the Dubuque Community School Board.

Further into Dubuque County, incumbent Republican Shannon Lundgren is seeking to maintain her seat in House District 57, which covers most of the county outside the Dubuque city limits. Lundgren is opposed by Democrat Nancy Fett, a Loras College social work professor. The far southwestern corner of the county – as well as all of Jackson and half of Jones County – is a part of House District 58, currently represented by Republican Andy McKean of Anamosa. McKean faces Democrat Joe Oclon of Bellevue, who’s making his first run for office.

Those two districts combine to form Iowa Senate District 29. Democrat Tod Bowman of Maquoketa is the incumbent there, and is facing a strong challenge from Dyersville Republican Carrie Koelker.

In Wisconsin, Assemblyman Travis Tranel is seeking his 5th term representing the 49th District, which covers all of Grant County and a small part of Lafayette County. Tranel is up against Democrat Mike Mooney of Platteville. Assembly District 51 covers western Iowa County and most of Lafayette County. That’s where Republican incumbent Todd Novak has a rematch with his 2016 opponent, Democrat Jeff Wright. Those two districts make up Senate District 17, which has been represented by Republican Howard Marklein since 2015. Democrat Kriss Marion, a Lafayette County Supervisor, stands in the way of Marklein’s bid for a 3rd term.

Turning to Illinois, current State Representative Brian Stewart of Freeport is looking to change chambers, as he’s running for the state Senate seat being vacated by the retiring Tim Bivins. Stewart faces first-time candidate Democrat David Simpson. Vying for Stewart’s seat in the House are Republican Andrew Chesney of Freeport and Democrat Nick Hyde of Galena.


Election 2018: Crowded Supervisors Competition Highlights Dubuque County Races

In Dubuque County races, there are four candidates running for two seats on the Board of Supervisors: incumbents Daryl Klein and Jay Wickham, and challengers Curt Kiessling and Ann McDonough.

Democrat CJ May and Republican Scott Nelson are seeking to take over the County Attorney position from the retiring Ralph Potter.

Democrat John Murphy is looking for a second term as the County Recorder, with Republican Tim Schultz opposing him.

County Treasurer Eric Stierman is unopposed.


Police: 63-Year-Old Dubuque Woman Busted with Nearly $1,400 of Weed

Police say officers found more than $1,300 worth of marijuana when they searched a retiree’s home over the weekend. At about 5:20 Friday evening, police were called to the 1200 block of Vernon Street on a report of a disturbance. An officer smelled a strong marijuana odor in the area, and applied for a warrant to search one of the nearby homes. According to court documents, the officer found several bags of marijuana in an upstairs bedroom. The total weight of all of the marijuana was just less than 100 grams. Based on estimated street prices, that amount of marijuana could sell for nearly $1,400. One of the home’s residents, 63-year-old Anna Murphy, has now been charged with Possession of Marijuana and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.


Election Preview: Lundgren, Fett Ask Voters to See Past Negative Ads

Fett, Lundgren

One of the Dubuque area’s most watched local races this Election Day will likely be the contest to represent the western portion of Dubuque County in the Iowa Legislature. Republican Shannon Lundgren currently holds the House District 57 seat, and is facing a challenge from Democrat Nancy Fett. Democrats have targeted the district in their bid to take back the Iowa House. But Lundgren is standing on her record, pointing out several accomplishments from her first two years in office. Fett counters that the State Legislature has become more extreme in the time that Lundgren has served. Lundgren drew statewide attention earlier this year when she floor managed what was known as the “fetal heartbeat” bill in the Iowa House. The bill, which passed, outlaws abortion after a heartbeat is detected, which usually happens in about the seventh week of pregnancy. Lundgren says she was one of many people – including some Democrats – involved in crafting that legislation. Advertisements in the race have veered toward the negative in recent weeks, with attacks coming from both sides. But what Fett says sets her claims apart is they can be verified by public record. The 57th district covers most of Dubuque County, with the exceptions of the city of Dubuque and the far southwestern corner of the county.

 


State Auditor: Possible Conflict of Interest in City's Relationship with Community Foundation

Van Milligen

A state auditor says the city of Dubuque needs to address potential conflicts of interest that may violate the state constitution. The auditor recently completed a reaudit of the city’s finances from fiscal year 2016. In part, it looked into the relationship between the city and the Community Foundation of Greater Dubuque. City Manager Mike Van Milligen is married to that organization’s CEO. In fiscal year 2016, the city gave the Community Foundation more than $232,000 for programs. Van Milligen says a previous look at the issue showed no conflict. The State Auditor also claims the city did not make the grants open to competitive bids with other groups and the programs that received funding weren’t giving required monthly reports to the city. Van Milligen says the city has already put in measures to fix some of those issues. The audit had two other complaints. First, that the city issued payments before the city council had formally approved them. Second, that the city approved selling a vacant fire house to a nonprofit, then sold it to a different nonprofit without an additional public hearing.


Hy-Vee: Facebook Coupons are a "Scam"

A grocery store chain with three Dubuque locations is warning customers of a social media scam. Hy-Vee posted about the alert on its corporate Facebook page, as well as many individual store pages, on Sunday afternoon. The supposed coupon also originated on Facebook, and promised customers 80 dollars off of their groceries in celebration of the chain’s 80th anniversary. The offer actually links to a survey that asks respondents three questions about their shopping habits and satisfaction with Hy-Vee stores. But the company says the coupons are not real, going so far as to call them a “scam” and reiterating that stores will not honor the offer. It’s unclear who created the fake coupon site and what its true purpose is.


New Jo Daviess County K-9 Begins Duty

Courtesy: Jo Daviess County Sheriff’s Dept.

A new K-9 officer is now on duty in Jo Daviess County. According to a posting on the county sheriff’s department Facebook page, K-9 “Sam” and trainer Deputy Furlong recently completed Illinois State Police’s Canine Academy. That’s a 10-week program which trains police dogs. Among the topics covered are obedience, narcotics detection, and suspect apprehension. The posting says that Deputy Furlong and “Sam” began their patrols last weekend.


UD Named Best For Vets

The University of Dubuque is again being recognized for its’ commitment to providing quality opportunities to veterans and military-connected students. Military Times has named UD to its’ Best for Vets: College rankings. Best for Vets Colleges is an editorially independent objective and rigorous news project. It evaluates factors that help make colleges and universities a good fit for service members, military vets and their families. About 500 4-year, 2-year, online and nontraditional and career and technical colleges took part in the survey. UD was the highest ranked Iowa institution, placing 22nd on a list of 137 four year universities.

 


Reynolds, Prominent Iowa Republicans Rally in Dubuque

Reynolds

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds brought her “Keep Iowa Moving” tour to Dubuque Thursday to try to encourage voters to give her a full term in office. Reynolds took over as governor in May of last year, after her predecessor, Terry Branstad, was picked as US Ambassador to China. She spoke to about 75 supporters at Giese Roofing yesterday morning, asking them to tell friends, family members…basically everyone they know to cast a ballot this year. Reynolds says her opponent, Des Moines businessman Fred Hubbell, has been spreading lies and scare tactics about the future of Iowa’s public employee pension fund. Reynolds was also joined by US Senator Joni Ernst, Congressman Rod Blum, State Senate candidate Carrie Koelker of Dyersville, and Republican candidates for several state offices.


Natural Gas Leak Forces Evacuations, Road Closure

A natural gas leak has caused the evacuation of a handful of homes and a road closure in Dubuque’s downtown area. A little after 9:30 this morning, Dubuque fire crews were called after workers doing directional drilling in the 600 block of West Locust Street struck a gas line. The fire department reports that a three-inch gas main appears to have been damaged and is leaking. Air monitoring us underway, and no additional hazards outside of the immediate area have been found. Three homes in the area have been evacuated as a precaution. In addition, West Locust Street has been closed near its intersection with Foye Street. The closure will be in effect until a crew from Black Hills Energy can repair the leak. A release from the fire department estimates that the area could be blocked off for several hours.


Senior High Gun Suspect Has Case Moved to Juvenile Court

The student accused of bringing a handgun to Senior High School earlier this fall will not be tried as an adult. A Dubuque County Court judge ordered this week that the case of 17-year-old Jason Gardner be moved to juvenile court. Gardner’s attorney had filed a motion to transfer the matter out of adult court a day after his arrest. According to prosecutors, a school resource officer at Senior found an unloaded handgun in Gardner’s backpack on September 24. Gardner was arrested and charged with Carrying Weapons on School Grounds, which is a felony. Had the case stayed in adult court, Gardner would have gone on trial in early December.


Felon from Chicago Arrested After Chase in Jo Daviess County

A convicted felon from Chicago was arrested after avoiding authorities for a couple of hours. Shortly before 8:00 last night, a Jo Daviess County Sheriff’s deputy saw a vehicle going nearly 90 miles per hour in a 55 zone east of Woodbine. The deputy tried to catch up to the vehicle, but lost sight of it. When the deputy reached Elizabeth, witnesses told them the car had turned down a side street and was still speeding without its headlights on. The car eventually crashed into a yard, but the driver was gone by the time deputies arrived at the scene. A check of the vehicle’s status found it had been reported stolen. An officer also found a gun on the floor of the driver’s side. Additional agencies were called in to help look for the driver, who was eventually found at about 10:30 PM. 21-year-old Tavon Williams of Chicago was taken to the hospital in Galena, then into police custody. In addition to a speeding ticket, Williams has been charged with Possessing a Stolen Vehicle, Possession of a Firearm by a Felon, and unlawful possession of ammunition.


Election Preview: Newcomers Chilton, James Face Off in 99th House District

Chilton, James

The only “open” election among the legislative seats that serve Dubuque County sees a pair of women who’ve never run for office before vying for the same seat. For the past four years, Abby Finkenauer has represented Iowa House District 99. But she’s given up the seat to run for Congress. Democrat Lindsay James and Republican Pauline Chilton are now running for the right to replace her. Chilton came to Dubuque in the early 2000s after growing up in Chicago. She works as a realtor, and says that experience has shown her what people look for in where they want to live. As for James, she’s also a transplant to Dubuque. She grew up and studied on the west coast before coming to the Key City in 2015. She serves as the director of the Peace Institute at Loras College and is also a pastor at Westminster Presbyterian Church. She credits her background with helping teach her how to work with people of all stripes. James supports reversing the privatization of Iowa’s Medicaid system. Chilton agrees that the system as it currently stands isn’t working, but isn’t sure putting the system back in the state’s hands is the solution. Both candidates have also spoken about education. While Chilton wants to see more funding put towards vocational and training programs, James advocates for increasing the money dedicated to education overall.


Elimination of Straight Party Voting Could Lead to Longer Lines at Polls

Elections officials in Iowa worry that lines could be a bit longer on Election Day due to a recent voting law change. Last year, the Iowa Legislature did away with what is known as “straight party voting.” The practice had allowed voters to fill in on box on their ballot to vote for every member of a certain party, be it Democrat or Republican. About one-third of Iowa voters utilized the option in the 2014 midterm election. But without the straight party option, voters will now have fill in a box for every race on the ballot. Jones County Auditor Janine Sulzner tells our coverage partner, KCRG-TV, she’s worried that will create longer lines at the polls on Election Day. But she says she’s taking steps to avoid the issue, including adding more voting booths at precincts. Wisconsin is also one of the more recent states to eliminate straight party voting. That change went into effect for the 2012 election. Illinois did away with straight party voting in 1997.


Natural Grocers Schedules Dubuque Store Opening

Dubuque’s newest grocery store has announced when it will open its doors. Natural Grocers has been converting the former Tri-State Blind Society building near the intersection of JFK and Asbury roads into its newest store for the past several months. According to a news release from the company, the new location will open for business in just about two weeks, on November 14. According to the company’s website, Natural Grocers offers organic produce, meat from antibiotic-free animals, and food without artificial colors, flavors, sweeteners, or preservatives. There are just more than 150 Natural Grocers locations across the US. The Dubuque store will be the sixth within the state of Iowa.


30+ Charges, Including Stalking and Trespassing, Filed Against Cascade Man

A Cascade man faces more than three dozen charges following a spate of incidents in Delaware County last week. According to online court records, 36-year-old Justin Trumm is facing eighteen counts of Violating a No Contact Order, fifteen counts of Stalking, two counts of Trespassing, and a single count of Operating a Vehicle without the Owner’s Consent. Those charges are all related to incidents that happened over the last four days of last week. On Saturday, the Delaware County Sheriff’s Department issued a warrant for Trumm’s arrest on four of the charges which related to text messages Trumm had sent to a person who has an active restraining order against him. That person also reported that Trumm had been on their property the three previous days. But before officers could serve the warrant, the protected party called police to say that Trumm was again at the property. That’s where he was arrested, and had all of the additional charges filed against him soon after. Many of them stem from additional text messages Trumm sent to the protected party between Wednesday and Saturday of last week. Trumm also has a Domestic Abuse Assault charge currently pending. He has pled not guilty, but a trial date hasn’t been set. Following that arrest, a restraining order was issued against him. Trumm was also accused of violating the order in early August. He’s set to go on trial on that count in mid-December.


Blum Office Vandal Avoids Significant Jail Time

The man who dumped paint on the door of Congressman Rod Blum’s office has avoided significant jail time. 32-year-old Cory Straub was charged with 3rd Degree Criminal Mischief and Possession of Marijuana following the incident in mid-August. Straub pled guilty to both of those charges. He was sentenced to 15 days in jail on the marijuana charge, and was given a one-year suspended jail sentence for the criminal mischief. According to Dubuque Police, Straub poured white paint on the front door of Blum’s office in the 1000 block of Main Street during the early morning hours of August 22. When officers found Straub in a city park later that day, they say he still had paint splatter on his jeans. He also had a small amount of marijuana in one of his pockets. In addition to the jail sentence, Straub will be on probation for two years and is prohibited from contacting Blum or any of his office staff for the next five years.


Dubuque County Election Office Hours Extended

The Dubuque County Election office will be open longer than normal during the days leading up to next week’s midterm election. A release from the office says the extended hours will allow them to assist voters in getting their votes cast. Offices at the courthouse and the Election Annex on Locust Street will be open from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Monday. An early voting site will also be held at the Dyersville Social Center Saturday from 8:30 a.m. until noon. Voted ballots must be postmarked no later than Monday, or delivered to the Election Office prior to the close of the polls at 9 p.m. on election day.


Election Preview: Dubuquers Blum, Finkenauer Face Off for 1st District Seat

Blum, Finkenauer

Regardless of the result of next month’s election, a Dubuque resident will represent the city in Congress. Incumbent Republican Rod Blum and Democrat State Representative Abby Finkenauer are facing off for the 1st District seat. Blum says he’s represented the district as an “independent vote” over the past four years. Finkenauer has also touted her bipartisanship, saying she’ll be willing to work with anyone if it helps the people of the district. Blum was one of the Republicans who voted in favor of that party’s federal tax break bill signed by President Trump last year. He says people are already seeing the results of that tax cut in their paychecks. On the topic of the economy, Finkenauer questions Blum’s support for President Trump’s trade war with China, which she says has been mishandled. Both candidates have had to fend off attacks that they aren’t accessible to potential voters. Republicans have tried to brand Finkenauer as “Absent Abby.” Blum, meanwhile, says the criticism that he doesn’t hold public events isn’t accurate. Blum is seeking his 3rd term in Congress. If Finkenauer wins, the 29-year-old would be one of the youngest women ever voted into the House of Representatives.


Experts Urge Caution for Those Using Online Searches to Get Candidate Info

Screenshots from Google searches for Rod Blum and Abby Finkenauer, with highlighted advertisements among the top results.

Those who haven’t yet made up their minds about who to vote for next week might well turn to the internet for help. But an online advertising expert says those who do need to be wary of campaign ads disguised as legitimate news stories. Scott Salwolke is a Dubuque-based Google advertising consultant. He says that when you search for a candidate’s name, it can be hard to tell whether the results – especially the ones at the top – are ads or not. Salwolke says that Google will sell premium space at the top of search results to the highest bidder. But anything purchased by a political group does need to include a disclosure statement. We found that negative ads pop up near the top of the search results for both of the candidates running in Iowa’s 1st Congressional District – Rod Blum and Abby Finkenauer – as well as for Fred Hubbell, the Democratic nominee for governor.


Group Proposing Bridge Between Clayton, Grant Counties to Hold Meeting

A group seeking to put a bridge across the Mississippi River from Clayton County to Grant County will hold a meeting next week. The Badger-Hawkeye Bridge Coalition wants a new river crossing between Guttenberg and Cassville. A discussion about the possibility of constructing a bridge will be held next Wednesday in Cassville. The meeting will begin at 7:00 PM at the local elementary school gym. It’s for anyone from Clayton, Grant, or Dubuque counties, as well as the surrounding area. As of now, there are no Mississippi crossings between Dubuque and Prairie du Chien. The distance between those two bridges is about 50 miles as the crow flies, and about 60 miles by car. A bridge between Guttenberg and Cassville would cut those distances by about half.


Salvadoran Man Living in Delaware County Gets Jail Time

A man from El Salvador who federal authorities say was living illegally in Delaware County is now headed to federal prison. 35-year-old Boris Martines-Garcia was sentenced to 100 days in federal prison after pleading guilty to illegally re-entering the country. According to prosecutors, Martines-Garcia had previously entered the country more than a decade ago before being deported in December of 2006. Then in July of this year, he was stopped by police for speeding in Delaware County. That ticket led immigration agents to Hopkinton, where Martines-Garcia was living.


Police: Visibility, Supervision Keys to Trick-or-Treat Safety

Dubuque is among many Tri-State area cities hosting its annual trick-or-treating tonight. Kids in costumes will be traipsing through neighborhoods, with little more than collecting candy on their minds. That’s why it’s largely up to parents and other adults to keep safety in mind. Dubuque Police Lt. Joe Messerich says parents should keep an eye on their kids, and make sure that the kids can be seen by others as well. Parents should also ensure that the kids’ costumes don’t pose any visibility problems or tripping hazards. Messerich says motorists also have to be aware of their surroundings Halloween night. While tales of people tampering with or poisoning Halloween candy have largely been debunked, Messerich says it’s still a good idea to keep an eye on what and how much candy kids are eating. Trick-or-treating runs from 5:30 to 7:30 in Dubuque.


Former VP Joe Biden Stumps for Finkenauer, Democrats

Courtesy: KCRG

A former Vice President was in eastern Iowa to encourage voters to send one of his former employees to Congress. Joe Biden headlined a campaign rally in Cedar Rapids last night for Democrats, including Dubuque State Representative Abby Finkenauer. Finkenauer had served as the Iowa Volunteer Coordinator on Biden’s unsuccessful 2008 presidential campaign when she was a student at Drake University. Finenauer is now seeking a seat in Congress at 29 years old, the same age Biden was when he was first elected to the US Senate. Biden says Finkenauer comes from a classic Iowa background. He added that Tuesday’s election is the next fight in what he calls the “battle for the soul of America.” Also appearing at the rally were Democratic nominee for Governor Fred Hubbell and his running mate, State Senator Rita Hart.


Dubuque's Temple Beth El Holds Memorial for Pittsburgh Victims

Courtesy: KCRG

More than 200 people packed into a Dubuque temple on Monday night to reflect on last weekend’s mass shooting at a synagogue in Pittsburgh. The Temple Beth El hosted the memorial service, which drew attendees from various faith communities. Temple Vice President Alan Garfield says the murders of eleven people at the Jewish worship center in Pennsylvania has local Jews on edge. Temple member Hank Goldstein spoke during the service and also believes the attack, and others like it, show echoes of past incidences of anti-Semitism. Dubuque has only a small Jewish community. Garfield estimates that about two dozen families attend Temple Beth El.


US 61, Wisconsin 35 to Close in Grant County Next Week

A nearly 17 mile long stretch of a federal highway in Grant County will be closed all next week. The Grant County Sheriff’s Department reports that US Highway 61 will be closed from Dickeyville to just south of Lancaster beginning Monday. Wisconsin Highway 35 pairs up with Highway 61 along that stretch. The closure is due to road work, which the sheriff’s office says will make the road “impassable.” A detour will take traffic through Platteville using US Highway 151 and Wisconsin Highway 81. That detour will add about ten miles to trips through the area.


Police: Arizona Man Damages Door During Arrest at Casino

An Arizona man is accused of causing several hundred dollars in damage as he was being ejected from a Dubuque casino. The incident happened at about 11:20 Saturday night at Q Casino’s Showroom entertainment venue. Casino security told police that 41-year-old Jeffrey Cirby of Golden Valley, Arizona, had been grabbing various women. Security told him to stop or he’d be asked to leave. A few minutes later, Cirby was seen trying to start a fight with another man. That’s when security detained him until police arrived. Cirby was arrested and as he was being removed, police say he kicked a glass door, causing about $750 in damage. Cirby has been charged with 3rd Degree Criminal Mischief, Public Intoxication, and Interference with Official Acts.


Semis Collide, Catch Fire on US 151 Between Dickeyville, Platteville

A pair of semis collided and caught fire in a crash that closed a major federal highway in Grant County yesterday afternoon. Shortly after 4:00 PM, sheriff’s deputies were called to the site of the crash, which was on US Highway 151 about halfway between Dickeyville and Platteville. According to the sheriff’s department, a semi hauling corn began to slow down to make a right turn onto a driveway off of the highway. The driver of a trailing semi noticed this too late, and tried to avoid crashing by swerving sharply to the left. The two vehicles still collided, and the trailing semi, which was hauling sawdust, caught on fire. The fire quickly engulfed the entire semi, which was a total loss. It also spread to the other semi, but was put out before overtaking that vehicle. The driver of the sawdust-hauling semi, 54-year-old Robert Koltes of Dubuque, was taken to the hospital with minor injuries. The driver hauling corn, 28-year-old Justin Clare of Platteville, was checked out at the scene. Highway 151 was closed in the area for several hours because of the crash and fire. At least one lane of the highway will remain closed today as clean up continues.


End Human Trafficking Walk This Weekend In Dubuque

Supporters of ending human trafficking will gather at the Roshek Building in downtown Dubuque this weekend for the 3rd annual “Walk to Set Free.” The event the walk is being organized by Set Free Dubuque as a way to bring awareness to and fight human trafficking. Appearing on Mediacom Leaders Program Set Free Executive Director Suzie Wright says a lot of people believe that human trafficking only happens in larger metro areas, like Chicago, New York and Los Angeles, but it is also becoming a problem in smaller communities like Dubuque. She says human trafficking affects women, men and children. Saturday’s walk will take participates pass the courthouse, the Dubuque law enforcement center and the miniature statue in Washington Square. Registration begins at 9:30 Saturday morning with the walk starting at around 10.


Hubbell Plans Dubuque Stop on Saturday Before Election

Hubbell

The Democratic candidate for Iowa governor’s final campaign swing before Election Day will include a stop in Dubuque. Des Moines businessman Fred Hubbell will hold a ‘Get Out the Vote’ rally at the Hotel Julien in downtown Dubuque Saturday afternoon. Hubbell is running to unseat incumbent Republican Governor Kim Reynolds. His event in Dubuque is scheduled to begin at 3:00 PM Saturday, according to a Facebook posting put up by his campaign. Recent polls have shown that the race between Hubbell and Reynolds will be a close one.


Winning Powerball Ticket Sold in Central Iowa

If you have any friends or family in the small central Iowa town of Redfield, now would be a good time to get in touch with them. A ticket sold at a convenience store in that community was one of the winners of Saturday night’s $750 million Powerball drawing. That ticket and one sold in New York both contained the winning numbers, meaning the jackpot will be split between the two winners. Iowa Lottery officials estimate that the Redfield winner would have the option of receiving $344 million in annuity payments, or a lump sum of $198 million. They also say this is the largest lottery prize ever won in Iowa. Redfield is a town of about 800 people located about a half hour west of the Des Moines metro area.


Dubuque Drug Task Force Nearly Sets Record with Drug Take Back Day

Courtesy: KCRG

Dubuque County authorities came close to setting a record with this fall’s prescription drug ‘take back’ day. The Dubuque Drug Task Force set up a collection site at Sam’s Club in Dubuque on Saturday. Their event was in conjunction with the national Prescription Drug Take Back Day. In Dubuque, just more than 650 pounds of expired or unwanted prescription drugs were turned in. That’s about 200 pounds more than the last ‘take back’ event, which was held last spring. It’s also very close to the task force’s all-time record for a collection event, which is 700 pounds. The drugs that were collected will be turned over to federal authorities, who will oversee their destruction.


Break-ins Reported at Businesses in Bellevue, Preston

Courtesy: Jackson County Sheriff’s Dept.

Authorities in Jackson County are hoping the public can help identify the suspect in a pair of business burglaries from the weekend. According to a posting on the county sheriff’s department’s Facebook page, a man broke into both Oly’s Garage in Preston and the Bender’s Foods grocery store in Bellevue. At one of the businesses, the suspect forced a door open, and broke a window to get into the other. The break-in at Bender’s happened after the store had closed on Saturday night. It’s not clear when the incident at Oly’s took place. The post doesn’t say what, if any property, was taken from the two businesses. It does include three images of the suspect taken from security camera footage. The suspect appears to be a white male with a thin build and a dark goatee or beard. He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt, blue jeans, and black gloves at the time of the break-ins.


Governor Reynolds in Dubuque

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds made stops in Dubuque Friday afternoon. In the aftermath of the arrest of a Florida man who sent numerous pipe bombs and other suspicious devices to prominent Democrats this week, Reynolds says it’s unfortunate that both Democrats and Republicans have fanned the flames of divisiveness throughout the country. Reynolds will face Democrat Fred Hubbell in the midterm election on November 6th.


Grant County Charges

A Grant County Man faces charges following a family incident Friday morning at his residence near Bloomington, Wisconsin. The Grant County Sheriff’s Department reports that 26-year old Robert Steiger Jr. is being held in jail on a tentative charge of First Degree Recklessly Endangering Safety. A preliminary investigation shows that Steiger was awoken by his 15 year old brother, shortly after 8 am who was operating machinery. Steiger is reported to have gotten upset he was awoken, and exited his residence armed with a shotgun and confronted the brother. He then approached his brother and discharged the 12-gauge shotgun near him while he was on the machinery. Steiger then went back into the residence, retrieved more ammunition before exiting the property with the shotgun and additional ammunition. He was located a short time later in Prairie Du Chien where he was taken into custody.


Probation For LSD Smuggler

The Dubuque man who tried to smuggle LSD in a sandwich to a person who was hospitalized nearly two-and-a-half years ago has received probation. According to online court records, 21 year old Peter Ries recently pleaded guilty to possession of LSD and failure to affix a drug tax stamp and was given two-years of probation. In May of 2016 police were called to Mercy Hospital to investigate a report of drug activity. Officers confiscated the sandwich and found two tablets inside wrapped in foil, later identified as LSD. A short investigation revealed that Ries was the person who tried to pass the sandwich to the 19 year old patient. Ries originally faced a charge of possession of LSD with intent to deliver. He was given a deferred judgment on the failure to affix a drug tax stamp charge.


Former Dubuque County Clerk Voices Strong Opposition to Judge's Retention

Gavin, Wittig

A longtime former Dubuque County employee is urging voters to reject a judge’s bid for retention. Clay Gavin spent more than 25 years as the county Clerk of Court before retiring over the summer. He’s sent letters to the editors of more than a dozen northeast Iowa newspapers explaining his opposition to the retention of Judge Monica Wittig. She’s one of three district court judges who will be on the ballot next month. Gavin says Wittig lacks several qualities needed to be a good judge, including fairness, legal knowledge, and integrity. Gavin is not alone in his opposition to Wittig’s retention. The Iowa Bar Association surveyed legal professionals who have interacted with Wittig, and only 54% agreed that she should remain on the bench. Gavin notes that survey is typically very favorable to judges. In Iowa, judges are appointed by the governor or a nominating commission. But voters periodically get the choice of whether to keep those judges in place or not. Typically, judicial elections are overlooked by voters. But Gavin believes they’re just as important as those for state and federal office. Gavin says the retention elections give voters the opportunity to “fix mistakes” made in judicial appointments. Wittig has served as a district court judge since 2003. We reached out to Judge Wittig, offering her an opportunity to respond to Gavin’s criticisms. She did not respond. In the interest of full disclosure, it should be noted that former clerk Gavin is the uncle of KDTH News Director Jesse Gavin.


Next "Dine Out for Public Schools" Event is November 8

Diners visiting nearly thirty Dubuque restaurants can pledge part of their bill to local schools next month. The Foundation for Dubuque Public Schools has scheduled another “Dine Out for Public Schools” event. The foundation hosts the event twice each year. During the “Dine Out,” a variety of Dubuque restaurants will donate ten percent of their sales to the foundation. The last two “Dine Outs” have each brought in about $4,500, but this fall’s edition has nearly a dozen more restaurants participating, according to Amy Unmacht, Executive Director of the Foundation for Dubuque Public Schools. With the increased number of restaurants, she’s hoping to raise $8,000 during this fall’s event. She says the foundation reaches out to all of the restaurants in Dubuque. The money raised will then be used to support nutrition initiatives within Dubuque’s public schools. But Unmacht says they’re still figuring out exactly what kind of activities will be supported. The upcoming “Dine Out” event is scheduled for November 8.

Full list of participating restaurants:

7 Hills Brewing

Adobos Mexican Grill

A&W

Caroline’s Restaurant

Chipotle

Dairy Queen (East 16th Street location)

East Mill Bakeshop

Falbo Bros. Pizzeria

Fat Tuesday’s

Fazoli’s

Five Guys

Freddy’s Frozen Custard

Junction 21

Kentucky Fried Chicken (JFK Road and Central Avenue locations)

Magoo’s Pizza

Old Chicago

Oolong

Panchero’s

Panera Bread

Subway (JFK Road and Plaza 20 locations)

Texas Roadhouse

Tony Roma’s

Town Clock Inn

Wendy’s (Wacker Plaza and East 16th Street locations)

Your Pie


Biden to Stump for Finkenauer in Campaign's Closing Days

The state lawmaker looking to take over Dubuque’s seat in Congress is enlisting the help of a former Vice President to make her closing argument. Former VP Joe Biden will appear alongside Abby Finkenauer at a campaign rally in Cedar Rapids on Tuesday, just one week before Election Day. Democratic candidate for governor Fred Hubbell and his running mate, State Senator Rita Hart, will also participate in the event, which is meant to drive early voting efforts. The rally is scheduled to begin at 6:00 Tuesday evening, though the exact location is not known. One of Finkenauer’s first forays into politics was serving as the Iowa Volunteer Coordinator for Biden’s failed 2008 campaign for president. The former VP gave Finkenauer his endorsement for her current race just days before she won the 1st District’s Democratic primary in June.


Student Accused of Bringing Gun to Senior Pleads Not Guilty

A Dubuque Senior High School student accused of bringing a gun to school has pleaded not guilty. 17-year-old Jason Gardner entered that plea to a felony count of Carrying Weapons on School Grounds earlier this month. Back on September 25, a student at Senior reported that Gardner had a gun in his backpack. A school resource officer located and confiscated the handgun, which was not loaded. Gardner told investigators he had found the gun at a bus stop near the school. Gardner is currently charged as an adult, but his attorneys have filed a motion to move the case to juvenile court. A hearing on that motion will be held next week. If the motion fails, Gardner’s trial would begin in December.


Suspect in July Domestic Assault Arrested

The suspect in a domestic assault who had avoided police for more than three months was finally taken into custody this week. 27-year-old Lonnie Burns was arrested following a traffic stop in the 500 block of Loras Boulevard at about 8:30 last night. Burns had been wanted since mid-July, when an ex-girlfriend accused him of beating her and holding her against her will. According to the woman, she and Burns had been house-sitting together on July 5th when Burns accused her of being involved with other men while he was in prison in 2014. The woman says Burns the beat her severely, punching her, banging her head off the floor, and choking her for minutes at a time. According to court documents, he told her “I might as well kill you.” Burns eventually forced the woman into a corner, where he made her sit for several hours, refusing to let her leave or use her cell phone. Burns has been charged with 1st Degree Harassment, Assault with Injury, and False Imprisonment.


Area Law Enforcement Agencies to Host Prescription Drug Take Back Events

A handful of Tri-State law enforcement agencies will take part in the national Prescription Drug Take Back Day this Saturday. The event offers people a chance to properly dispose of expired or unwanted prescription drugs. Most of the take backs run from 10:00 Saturday morning until 2:00 in the afternoon. Here in Dubuque, the county drug task force will host their take back event at Sam’s Club on Asbury Road. Dubuque County Sheriff Joe Kennedy says the drug take back events have continued to be more impactful each time they’ve been held. Medications collected during the event are turned over to federal agencies, which oversee their destruction. Kennedy says the feds have a better method of getting rid of the drugs that the average citizen. These prescription take back events have been happening since before opioid addiction became a significant issue. But Kennedy believes they’ve taken on a new importance as the opioid crisis has grown. Kennedy points out that any kind of medication can be turned over, not just prescription painkillers.

Full list of the area departments hosting drug take back events:

All events run Saturday from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM, unless otherwise noted

Asbury Police: Asbury City Hall

Delaware County Sheriff: Sheriff’s office in Manchester

Manchester Police: Blakesley Drug

Jackson County Sheriff: Maquoketa Police Department and Sabula Police Department

Dickeyville Police: Dickeyville Police Station (9:00 AM to noon)


Dubuque Halloween Parade to Continue Under New Sponsors

Despite the spooky prospect that it would be discontinued, Dubuque’s annual Halloween parade will happen on Monday. Early last month, the parade’s longtime sponsor, the Dubuque Community YMCA, announced that it would no longer organize the parade. The event’s status was in doubt for about a week, until a group of businesses, including the McGrath family of car dealerships, stepped forward. Trevor Arnold is the General Manager of McGrath Dubuque, and says the public concern over the parade’s future convinced them to get involved. Arnold says the biggest challenge in taking over the parade has been finding enough volunteers. Even though it won’t be sponsoring the parade this year, Arnold says staff from the Y has been very helpful. In addition to the new sponsor, this year’s parade will also feature the return of candy. For safety reasons, parade participants were initially barred from throwing candy from floats. Last year, candy was banned outright. Arnold says this year, treats will again be handed out at ground level. The parade begins at 6:30 Monday night at Jackson Park, and will end at Washington Park. In addition to McGrath, Pinnacle Satellite and Cellular is also helping sponsor this year’s parade.


Powerball Jackpot Increases Again, Could Reach #2 in Game's History

Just days after a world record lottery jackpot was won, another lottery game is also pushing toward a ten-figure jackpot. No winning tickets were sold in last night’s Powerball drawing. The top prize for that game is now up to $750 million. If the prize is won on Saturday, it would be the 3rd largest Powerball jackpot ever. A slight increase in the expected jackpot could push it up to the 2nd largest. The current second-largest Powerball jackpot was a $759 million prize won in August of last year.


Charges Upgraded Against Suspect in Attack on Platteville Woman

A Platteville man accused of grabbing a woman twice earlier this month has had the charges against him upgraded. 25-year-old Amadeus Toney was arrested following an incident back on October 4. A woman told police that she had been walking home, when she noticed a man was following her. The man, later identified as Toney, later walked up and grabbed the woman. She was able to get away, but he grabbed onto her a second time, tried to drag her across a street, and also attempted to remove her clothes. Toney stopped and left the area when a neighbor opened their front door to see what was going on. Toney has now been charged with one count each of 2nd Degree Sexual Assault and Attempted 2nd Degree Sexual Assault. Those are both felonies.


KCRG Finds Attack Ad Against Bowman Lacks Context

Courtesy: KCRG

Some of the claims made in an attack ad from Dyersville Republican Carrie Koelker lack context. That’s the finding of a fact check by our coverage partners at KCRG-TV. Video and audio versions of the ad targeting incumbent State Senator Tod Bowman have been running for about the past week, including on our Radio Dubuque stations. The ad leads off with a claim that Bowman supported benefits for so-called “illegal immigrants.” But, as KCRG’s Beth Malicki explains, that’s not the case. The ad claims that Bowman supported wasteful spending, and lays out several examples, including money for a golf tournament and furniture at a Des Moines courthouse. While Bowman did vote in favor of those measures, the ad leaves out some important details. The spot claims that Bowman has voted in favor of what it calls “handouts to special interests” more than 50 times since he’s been in the Senate. Malicki points out that these “handouts” are often tax credits and grants that receive widespread support. The ad’s final claim is that Bowman voted against a tax cut for middle class families. While Bowman did oppose the Republican-backed tax cut passed earlier this year, those in the middle class won’t be getting the bulk of the benefit. KCRG gave the ad a grade of “C,” noting that while some of the claims are factually accurate, they lack needed context. Koelker and Bowman are running to represent Senate District 29, which includes portions of Dubuque, Jackson, and Jones counties.


Ethics Complaint Filed Against Bowman

The State Senator who represents a portion of Dubuque County is now fighting an ethics complaint as he seeks re-election. The complaints were filed last week against Democrat Senator Tod Bowman of Maquoketa. The complaint alleges that Bowman failed to place proper attribution in a campaign video that was posted to his personal Facebook page, and that he recorded a campaign ad in a school. That would go against a Legislature rule that prohibits public resources from being used in campaign materials. In an email sent to KDTH, Bowman says after he became aware of the situation he immediately addressed the attribution issue. He adds that he received permission from Maquoketa High School to shoot the ad there. A state ethics board will take up the matter at a meeting on November 15th. The complaints were filed by Janelle Lutgen of Bernard, who is the chair of the Jackson County Republican Party. Bowman is facing Dyersville Republican Carrie Koelker in his bid for another term.


Grassley Still Questioned About Kavanaugh

It’s been nearly 3 weeks since the Senate confirmed the appointment of Judge Brett Kavanaugh to the U.S. Supreme Court, but the chair of the Senate Judiciary Committee is still answering questions about what some call the most controversial appointment to the high court ever. Kavanaugh was accused of sexual assault by several women which allegedly happened years ago. Iowa Senator Charles Grassley says Democrats opposed to Kavanaugh’s nomination did all they could to have him not confirmed, but their tactics didn’t work. Background checks were conducted on Kavanaugh by the FBI, which found no evidence or proof of sexual misconduct. Grassley says nominations, especially under President Trump, have become too political. Kavanaugh was sworn in at the Supreme Court by Chief Justice John Roberts and the man he replaces, retired Justice Anthony Kennedy.


Dubuque County Setting Strong Early Voting Pace

Dolan

About a quarter of Dubuque County’s registered voters have already cast a ballot or asked to vote absentee in next month’s election. That’s according to data from the county elections office. We’re just a couple days past the midpoint of Iowa’s 29-day early voting period. Dubuque County Auditor Denise Dolan tells us that of the county’s roughly 60,000 registered voters, about one in four have already chosen to take advantage of early voting. More than 17,000 people have either voted in person or requested a ballot so far. Not only is early voting this year outpacing the last midterm election in 2014, it’s also ahead of the pace set during the presidential election two years ago. Dolan says early voting can often be a good indicator of how strong overall voter turnout will be. The early vote totals have not shown a clear advantage for either of the two major political parties. Dolan notes that this Saturday at 5:00 PM is the deadline to request a ballot be mailed out. That’s also the latest that people can pre-register to vote, though registration is available at the polls on Election Day.


14 People Cited in Connection with SW Wisconsin Pumpkin Thefts

More than a dozen people were issued citations for stealing pumpkins in southwestern Wisconsin last weekend. The Lafayette County Sheriff’s Office reports that the attempted thefts all happened Saturday night or early Sunday morning near Amish homes outside of Belmont. Deputies from the department have been paying special attention to the area since the thefts began. The first set of arrests came at about 7:20 Saturday evening, when four people ranging in age from 35 to 44 were cited for theft on Mitchell Hollow Road. About three hours later, three teenagers were stopped on County Highway XX. They were each written up for theft, while 19-year-old Carlos Ronquillo of Dickeyville was given a ticket for Driving Without Insurance. Then just before 1:00 AM, a carload of seven people were stopped on County Highway B. The driver, 20-year-old Wyatt Sweet of Tomah was cited for Theft, Driving Without Insurance, and Parking on the Road in the Dark. His six passengers were all given tickets for Theft, Underage Drinking, or both.


Body Found in Mississippi River Near Cassville Confirmed as Missing Boater

The body of a missing boater has been recovered from the Mississippi River. Late last week, a 911 caller informed authorities they had located the body on the Wisconsin side of the river near Cassville. The body was sent to the Iowa Medical Examiner’s office, where an autopsy has confirmed its identity as 56-year-old John Roe of Burlington, Wisconsin. Roe had been reported missing earlier this month after a boating trip on the Mississippi. Cassville firefighters had recovered his unoccupied boat back on October 6. It’s believed that Roe was boating by himself and fell out of the boat while not wearing a life jacket. The cause of death has been ruled an accidental drowning.


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