July 31 news

ROCK RAPIDS, Iowa – Former Lyon County Deputy Christopher Wayne Lincecum was arrested Tuesday and charged with third-degree sexual abuse, a class C felony.

In late June 2013, the Lyon County Sheriff's Office began investigating allegations of sexual assault involving a 15 year old female and Lincecum. Upon discovery of these allegations, the Sheriff's Office and Lyon County Attorney's Office requested the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) take over and conduct an impartial investigation.

A Special Agent from DCI interviewed Lincecum and the victim, as well as several other witnesses. This investigation revealed that on two occasions, the victim went on a ride-along with Lincecum while he was working for the Sheriff's Office. On one of these occasions, Lincecum had inappropriate sexual contact with the victim. Lincecum separated employment with the Lyon County Sheriff's Office in the spring of 2013, due to an unrelated matter.

Lincecum was booked and subsequently bonded out. The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation continues its investigation, and the Iowa Attorney General's Office will handle the prosecution of the suspect.

WORTHINGTON – If you or someone you know has been affected by violence, the Southwest Crisis Center invited you to participate in the Clothesline Project, an event for those who have experienced violence to express how it has affected them by using a t-shirt as a canvas. The completed shirt will be hung on a clothesline during October for Domestic Violence Awareness Month to be viewed by others as testimony to the issue of violence. With the support of many, the CLP has spread world-wide.

The Southwest Crisis Center is joining in this awareness movement by inviting survivors and victims of domestic violence, sexual violence, emotional violence and child abuse to come together and create our own Clothesline. The Nobles County office will be hosting sessions throughout the summer for survivors to meet, heal together and create their own T-shirt for the project.

The sessions will take place Thursday, August 15 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Nobles County Library and on Monday, September 16 from 5 to 7 p.m. at the Southwest Crisis Center office. Call Cynthia or Thi at 507-376-4311 to register.

SIBLEY, Iowa — Three Osceola County grain elevators were hit by burglary over the weekend. The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office reports they are investigating burglaries at elevators in Ashton, Allendorf, and Ocheyedan. All three burglaries took place in the office areas of the elevators and were reported Monday. Taken in each of the burglaries was an undisclosed amount of cash. Anyone with information is encouraged to contact the Sheriff’s Office at 712-754-2556 or send an anonymous tip through Text-A-Tip at www.sheriffosceolacounty.org.

JACKSON - Breakfast on the Farm will take place this Saturday from 9-11, 2 miles west of Windom off Hwy 62 at the Bryan & Lois Eigenberg Family Farm – just watch for signs. For a free will donation, you can enjoy all you can eat pancakes by Chris’s Cakes and there will be something for all ages.
The event is sponsored by the Jackson County Farm Bureau, AgStar Financial Services, Country Pride Cooperative Services, Mycogen Seeds, Asmus Farm Supply and Farmers Coop Association of Jackson. Call Jackson County Farm Bureau President Rachel Daberkow with any questions at 320-221-1364.

IOWA – There are now 372 cases of cyclospora infection in 16 states, and health departments in Nebraska and Iowa think they may have found the culprit. Their investigations have led them to believe the infection is linked to bagged salad mixes, although a brand has not yet been identified. The Centers for Disease Control will continue to work with federal, state, and local partners in the investigation to determine whether this conclusion applies to the increase in cases of cyclosporiasis in other states.

Most of the illness onset dates have ranged from mid-June through early July, and at least 21 people have reportedly been hospitalized in three states. The states with confirmed cases include Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Wisconsin and more. It is not yet clear whether the cases from all of the states are part of the same outbreak.

WILLMAR - The Kandiyohi County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a homicide at a residence on the east side of Willmar. 79-year-old Lila Warwick was found dead in her home, where she lived alone, along the 3000 block of East Highway 12 after deputies conducted a welfare check just after 5 p.m. Monday.

Both the sheriff’s office and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension are investigating. No arrest has been made. Authorities are seeking the public’s help in the case. Anyone with information is asked to call the sheriff’s office at 320-235-1260.

MINNESOTA - The Minnesota Department of Revenue is projecting a $121 million decrease in property taxes next year, the first reduction in more than a decade. The revenue department said the projection is “based on prior experience of what we’ve seen counties and cities do with this kind of aid,” Revenue Commissioner Myron Frans said at a news conference Tuesday.

Gov. Mark Dayton attributed the drop to an increase in local government aid (LGA) and credited the DFL state budget plan that raised $2.1 billion in new taxes.

Frans says without the additional money to local governments, the state was looking at a projected $180 million increase in property taxes in 2014.

Republicans remain skeptical of the estimate. Senate Minority Leader David Hann, R-Eden Prairie, said the projections are about as reliable as the e-pull tab projections to fund the Vikings stadium, which were far off the mark. Hann also disagreed that an increase in LGA leads to a decrease in property taxes.

Frans said the numbers are preliminary and may change when local government officials make final spending decisions and set the property tax rate. A final analysis won’t be complete until February.

If the projections pan out, Frans said 2014 will be the first drop in property taxes since 2002.

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