Iowa News

EPA: Pipe company had violations at Iowa facility
COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) — Environmental officials say a pipe company must pay $950,000 for air and water violations at its former Council Bluffs facility. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Region 7 says Griffin Pipe Products must pay the civil penalty after multiple violations. The company is accused of illegally discharging untreated process wastewater to the city's wastewater collection system between 2007 and 2008. It is also accused of violating its storm water permit in 2011. The EPA says the company also discharged zinc, lead, copper and other pollutants in violation of its permit levels. Griffin Pipe Products has ceased production at the Council Bluff facility. It says it is now in compliance with the Clean Air Act and the Clean Water Act. A message left for Griffin Pipe Products was not immediately returned Monday.

Iowa man charged with vehicular homicide in wreck
DAVENPORT, Iowa (AP) — A Davenport man has been charged with vehicular homicide following a car wreck that killed two Illinois men. Twenty-four-year-old Kai Miller is charged with homicide by vehicle, operating while intoxicated and two counts of serious injury by vehicle in connection to the crash early Sunday in Davenport. Court records do not list an attorney. Authorities say Miller's car collided with a vehicle carrying 21-year-old Andrew Scott Adams and 22-year-old Danny DeBacker, both of Orion, Illinois. An affidavit says Miller admitted to police that he drank multiple alcoholic beverages prior to driving. The Quad-City Times reports court records show Miller pleaded guilty to a speeding violation in connection to a 2009 car crash that killed his 18-year-old passenger. He license was taken away for two months.

Lab returns tests on capsules found at Iowa prison
ROCKWELL CITY, Iowa (AP) — Lab results show hundreds of capsules found at a northern Iowa prison tested negative for any controlled substances. The state Department of Public Safety made the announcement Monday about the 300 to 400 capsules found earlier this month at the North Central Correctional Facility in Rockwell City. The Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation Criminalistics Laboratory completed an analysis of the capsules. The pills contained an unknown substance, prompting a state drug investigation. Initial field testing indicated they contained cocaine and the pain killer Demerol, but later testing came back negative for controlled substances. State officials have not said how the capsules got inside the prison.

Man dies following short car chase in central Iowa
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A man has died following a short car chase with authorities in central Iowa. The Warren County Sheriff's office says a deputy began following the car after it was reported stolen earlier Monday morning. The chase lasted less than a minute. The vehicle hit an embankment in a private driveway and flipped. It then caught fire. The Des Moines Register reports the driver in the stolen vehicle was pronounced dead at the scene. A name hasn't been released.

Historic Post Office coming back to life
CEDAR FALLS, Iowa (AP) — Volunteers are making progress on the restoration of a former Cedar Falls post office that once was destined for demolition. In 2012, the city council voted to demolish the building. But the Cedar Falls Development Group acquired a 40-year lease for the city-owned structure earlier this year, preventing its razing. The Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports volunteers have removed mold inside of the building, landscaped the front lawn and repainted the original window casings outside. In the post office's basement, the exposed brick walls are still waiting to be resealed. Several people have already expressed an interest in using the space, including a tenant who has proposed converting it into a boutique and wine bar. The development group says no lease agreements have been signed yet though.

Authorities work to identify body found in car
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa City police continue to investigate a homicide after finding a body in the trunk of a car belonging to a missing Iowa State University student. Police are careful not to identify the body as that of 20-year-old Tong Shao but say it was her Toyota Camry in which the body was found Friday night at an apartment complex in southeast Iowa City. Iowa City Police spokesman Sgt. Scott Gaarde says an autopsy has been completed and efforts are being made to identify the body. Shao, a junior chemical engineering student from China was last seen in Ames more than three weeks ago. She is believed to have gone to Iowa City to visit her boyfriend, who police say is a person of interest they believe has flown to China.

Des Moines announces interim police chief
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A veteran law enforcement official has been named interim police chief for Des Moines. The city announced Monday that Maj. Douglas B. Harvey will take over the duties of Chief Judy Bradshaw. He will hold the position until a permanent replacement is hired. Harvey has a 37-year career with the Des Moines Police Department. He recently managed a $2.3 million building project at the police station that included a new high tech forensics lab and workspace for the crime scene unit. City officials say they'll conduct a national search in the next several months to replace Bradshaw. She retires Friday.

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