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Two from Newton Facing Theft Charges After Investigation

(JASPER COUNTY, Iowa)–On Monday, Feb. 12, after a lengthy investigation, the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office was able to arrest two subjects for multiple thefts and related charges.

Charles Loudermilk, age 49, of Newton, was one of the two subjects arrested. Deputies had an active arrest warrant for Loudermilk, as well as additional charges of burglary. Deputies attempted to stop Loudermilk, but he tried to flee, driving through a ditch. Deputies used legal intervention and stopped Loudermilk. The vehicle Loudermilk was operating was reported stolen in Jasper County on Dec. 24, 2017. Inside the vehicle, Deputies recovered a firearm. Loudermilk was taken into custody and transported to the Jasper County Jail.

A second vehicle in the area attempted to elude deputies. The vehicle was eventually stopped in the 6800 block of Cone Street. The driver, identified as Kristen Miller, age 34, of Newton, was also arrested and transported to the Jasper County Jail.

During the last several months, numerous burglaries were reported by residents of Jasper County. Vehicles, construction equipment, trailers, tools, horse tack and other personal items were reported stolen.

Based upon information developed during the investigation, a search warrant was executed Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018 at a residence in Reasnor, in Jasper County. During the search, Deputies recovered stolen property from some of these reported burglaries. The property recovered was valued at approximately $125,000. Deputies have identified some of the owners of the property. Property reported stolen from Poweshiek County was also recovered at this location. Additional follow up is being conducted in identifying all of the property recovered.

Loudermilk was charged with: Theft 1st Degree (property in excess of $10,000) – Class C Felony Theft 2nd Degree – possession of stolen vehicle – Class D Felony Possession of firearm by a felon – Class D Felony.
Loudermilk is being held on No Bond. He is also being held on a previous five year prison sentence (Iowa Department of Corrections), after he failed to turn himself in to authorities.

Miller was charged with: Theft 2nd degree – Class D Felony Carrying Weapons – Aggravated Misdemeanor Possession of Marijuana – Serious Misdemeanor Possession of a Controlled Substance (2 counts) – Serious Misdemeanor Possession of Drug Paraphernalia- Simple Misdemeanor. Miller had a bond set by a judge at $5,000.

Follow up investigation continues and additional criminal charges against the subjects are pending. Information from the public, along with assistance from the Newton Police Department and MINE EAST Task Force, allowed investigators to focus on these two subjects.

Anyone with additional information in reference to this investigation or reported burglaries is encouraged to contact the Jasper County Sheriff’s Office.

Criminal charges against both subjects are merely allegations and they should be considered innocent until proven guilty.

– This information is from a news release provided by the Jasper County Sheriff’s Department.

Black Bear Killed on I-80 Likely Same From Mahaska and Poweshiek Counties

Photo previously taken on July 12, 2017.

The same black bear that was seen in Mahaska and Poweshiek Counties within the last few months is suspected to be dead.

Officials say that the black bear spotted several times in both Mahaska and Powesheik County was likely the same bear struck and killed by a car on Interstate 80 near Victor Thursday night.

Authorities say a 27-year-old Texas man was driving west on Interstate 80 shortly before 9:30 Thursday night when his minivan hit the bear.

The driver of the minivan wasn’t hurt and neither was his passenger, but the 250-pound bear died instantly. The van wound up in a ditch and had to be towed away.

Deceased Person Found at Origin of Grass Fire

On November 25th, shortly before 3 PM the Grinnell Fire Department responded to a report of a lot of smoke between Highway 6 and 20 th Street west of Grinnell. Firefighters responded and found a fast moving grass fire just west of 101 Highway 6. As firefighters attacked the fire they located a fire victim at the point of origin.

The victim, identified as 86-year-old Dr. Bernhard Wiltfang, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The fire burned approximately 40 acres and 70 hay bales. Grinnell Fire was on scene for three-and-a-half hours and was assisted on scene by Gilman Fire, Kellogg Fire, Midwest Ambulance, Poweshiek County Sheriff’s Office and Jasper County Sheriff’s Office.

Both the fire and the fatality appear to have been accidental in nature.

Wind Project XI Slated to Begin in Poweshiek County

MidAmerican Energy Company plans to build a new wind farm in Poweshiek County. This is the third site in Iowa selected for construction as part of the Wind XI project.

MidAmerican Energy has begun construction activity on the North English wind farm, with completion scheduled for December 2018. The wind farm will share an operations and maintenance building in Montezuma with the Prairie wind farm, currently under construction in neighboring Mahaska County.

The North English wind farm is part of MidAmerican Energy’s Wind XI project and will add up to 170 new wind turbines with a combined capacity of 340 megawatts of new wind generation. MidAmerican Energy expects to pay up to approximately $137 million in county property taxes and up to approximately $114 million in landowner lease payments over the 40-year lifespan of the project.

“We are excited to continue development of our Wind XI project and come closer to achieving our 100{99cd714f394079a7f0ed2eb1518dd31342ff3ceb5b6c267c3ad8acd5b5a7d66b} Renewable Vision,” said Bill Fehrman, president and CEO of MidAmerican Energy. “The benefits of Wind XI are very clear: clean energy produced right here in Iowa, for Iowa customers, using one of Iowa’s abundant renewable resources.”

The company is working with developers, county officials and landowners at potential wind farm sites in other Iowa counties for the balance of the Wind XI project. Construction on these projects will start in 2018 and 2019, and sites will be announced at a later date. Altogether, the $3.6 billion Wind XI project will consist of up to 1,000 wind turbines and 2,000 megawatts of wind generation capacity in Iowa when complete in December 2019.

The Wind XI project is expected to produce $1.2 billion in economic benefits for Iowa communities as a result of landowner easements and property tax payments over the next 40 years. Additionally, during construction thousands of jobs are expected to be added to Iowa’s economy and hundreds of new permanent jobs will be added when the expansion is complete. MidAmerican Energy is not asking for an increase in customer rates or financial assistance from the state to pay for the Wind XI project, and the development will help provide stable rates for its customers without requesting an increase until at least 2029.

About MidAmerican Energy Company
MidAmerican Energy Company is an energy provider serving 760,000 electric customers and 742,000 natural gas customers in Iowa, Illinois, Nebraska and South Dakota. It is headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa. Information about MidAmerican Energy is available on the company’s website, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube pages, which can be accessed via www.MidAmericanEnergy.com.

Black Bear Spotted in Poweshiek County

Deputies from the Poweshiek County Sheriff’s Office and the State Game Warden officer were able to positively identify a black bear southeast of Montezuma on the evening of September 12.

This is information only. This bear has shown no signs of aggressive behavior and is not a threat to the public at this time. If you see the bear, keep your distance and leave it alone.

If you see the bear near property or town, however, please call and advise the Sheriff’s Office of its location.

Any questions please call the Poweshiek Sheriff’s Office non-emergency line at 641-623-5679 or the State Game Warden at 641-660-0741.


** Press Release from the Poweshiek County Sheriff’s Office.

Suspect Found, Two in Custody After Assault and Chase

On April 7, 2016 at approximately 10:40 am, Jasper County Sheriff’s Office Dispatchers received a 911 call from a male subject at a Reasnor residence. This subject reported that two subjects broke into the residence, assaulted him, and then took his vehicle.   The subject suffered minor injuries.

Jasper County Deputies and other law enforcement officers responded to the area. At approximately 10:52 am, a Jasper County Deputy located the two vehicles southeast of Newton. He confirmed that one of the vehicles was the stolen vehicle.  The second vehicle immediately fled the area.    The Deputy attempted to stop the stolen vehicle, which failed to stop.  The vehicle attempted to elude the deputy. Newton Police Officers were able to assist by placing stop stick devices in the roadway on S 13th Ave E during the pursuit.

The driver of the stolen vehicle did strike the stop sticks, deflating two tires.   The vehicle continued on S 13th Ave E in Newton. At the intersection of E 5th St S and S 13th Ave E, the deputy was able to initiate a pursuit intervention technique (PIT) and get the stolen vehicle stopped. The driver was taken into custody.   No one was injured during this incident.

The driver was identified as Kelsi Spears, age 23 of Kellogg, Iowa.   She was transported to Jasper County Jail.

The driver of the second vehicle has been identified as Elijah Utterback, age 37 of Ottumwa, Iowa.

On April 7th, 2016 at 2:30 pm, Elijah Utterback, age 37 of Ottumwa, was taken into custody in Northern Mahaska County.  Mahaska County Deputies located a vehicle he was operating.  Utterback fled on foot into a rural area near the North Skunk River.   This area was near Hwy 146 and on the Poweshiek/Mahaska County Line.  Law Enforcement officers from numerous agencies responded to assist.   A perimeter was established and several search teams checked the area.  A Jasper County Reserve Deputy and K-9 located Utterback hiding in a tree. He was taken into custody without incident.   Agencies assisting included Mahaska and Poweshiek County Sheriff’s Offices, Mahaska and Poweshiek County Emergency Management, Iowa State Patrol District 13 including an Iowa State Patrol Aircraft, and Mahaska County Conservation.

Utterback is charged with 1st Degree Burglary, 2nd Degree Theft, Driving with a Suspended License, and No Insurance. Spears is charged with 1st Degree Burglary, 2nd Degree Theft, Felony eluding, driving without a license, no insurance, no license plate, driving on the wrong side of the road, and failure to obey a stop sign.

Criminal charges are merely an allegation and both subjects should be considered innocent until proven guilty.


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