Plea change hearing set for Mason City woman accused of mailing drugs to inmate at county jail

first_imgMASON CITY — A plea change hearing has been scheduled for a Mason City woman accused of mailing drugs to a jail inmate.35-year-old Erin Hanson is accused of mailing the drug Suboxone, a schedule three prescription pain reliever, to an inmate at the Cerro Gordo County Jail. The criminal complaint was filed on February 4th, with a nationwide warrant for her arrest being issued two days later.Hanson’s trial was scheduled to start on June 25th, but online court records show that Judge Karen Salic has now scheduled a plea change hearing for July 1st.last_img read more

Casinos to have measures in place to block minors from sports gambling

first_imgLegal sports betting in Iowa will begin for the first time Thursday at noon. One of the concerns is keeping people under the age of 21 from betting. Iowa Racing and Gaming Administrator, Brian Ohorilko, says that’s one of the things the casinos will be charged with handling.“Part of the controls in place requires the operator to have ‘know your customer’ controls,” Ohorilko says. Most casinos are partnering with wagering companies that have experience in the sports gambling business. You have to come into a casino and sign up for an account, and Ohorilko says that’s where the various measures will be used to check your age.“They vary depending on the advanced deposit sports wagering operator,” Ohorilko says. “But most of the operators are using some sort of credit verification. They’ll use government data bases, private companies that have access to multiple information sites that they can identify someone’s age.” He says it is possible they may have to take it a step further.“If those ages are not easily identified through online sources — then those customers may be asked to provide additional information — or send in copies of their identification or proof of residency. So, it’s really a tiered approach to identify individuals to ensure that they are 21,” according to Ohorilko. The casinos will offer in house wagering — but the majority of the sports bets are expected to be placed through their online apps. Ohorilko says that’s one area where minors might try to sneak through.“What will be difficult will be if you have a willing adult that has an account and they give that account information to someone who is under 21. That is something that cannot be easily detected,” Ohorilko says. Eighteen of the 19 state-licensed casinos have been approved for sports gambling licenses.last_img read more

UPDATED STORY — Iowa governor says no credit for online instruction without state permission (VIDEO)

first_imgJOHNSTON — Governor Kim Reynolds says in-person classes are to be the primary mode of educating Iowa’s K-12 students this school year and students will not get credit if their schooling is conducted online without state permission.“Schools that choose not to return to school for at least 50% in-person instruction are not defying me,” Reynolds said during a news conference Tuesday morning. “They’re defying the law.”On Monday night, Urbandale’s school board voted to continue online classes for a year-round school that state officials ordered to start in-person classes this Friday. And Waukee school officials issued a statement, saying state law gives them local control over these decisions. During today’s news conference, Reynolds strongly pushed back.“We’ve heard from countless experts, pediatricians, social workers, mental health providers, the CDC,” Reynolds said, “that what’s best for kids is for them to be in school and in the classroom.”Reynolds told reporters the “vast majority” of Iowa school are planning to start the school year with in-person classes, while “a handful” of districts are not following her guidance.“We’re going to continue to do the outreach and work with them and see if we can’t get them to comply,” Reynolds said. “It is the law.”If Urbandale, Waukee, Des Moines, Ames and Iowa City districts begin this August with remote learning without state officials’ approval, the governor said students will not get credit for those days of on-line instruction. The governor also is accusing the media of stoking fears that children will contract the virus at school and teachers may die of it.“What we’re doing to these kids is unconscionable, the fear that we’re instilling in them,” she said, “and so I think we all have a responsibility to do better including me and we can and I’m working on it every single day because come hell or high water, we’re going to get through this.”The governor indicated school administrators in districts that begin remote learning without state approval may lose their license. Waukee, one of the five districts at the center of this controversy, is led by superintendent Brad Buck, who served 17 months as Iowa Department of Education director for Republican Governor Terry Branstad.“The kids need to be in the classroom,” Reynolds said today. “…We’re in a much better position than we were when schools were shut down. Kids have not had instruction for over five months.”Reynolds indicate state officials will meet with administrators from the five districts that are so far sticking with plans for remote learning in hopes of resolving the impasse.“I’ve also heard from parents. I’ve also heard from single moms. I’ve also heard from moms who have children who have behavioral health issues,” Reynolds said. “…What we’re trying to do is to balance, to make sure that we can open safely and responsibly.”The governor’s spokesman said a state-maintained website will list the 14-day rolling average of positive Covid-19 cases in every school district. Once the so-called positivity rate reaches 15% and at least 10% of students are absent, district officials may seek state permission to send all students home and shift to online instruction only for 14 days.last_img read more

New-look Arsenal just the tonic for Wenger

first_imgArsene WengerLondon, United Kingdom | AFP | Just days after Arsenal were lurching towards another crisis, Arsene Wenger can suddenly look to a brighter future thanks to a revitalised attack spearheaded by Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Henrikh Mkhitaryan.An error-strewn 3-1 defeat at struggling Swansea last Tuesday was the latest low-point of a troubled season for Arsenal.Coming just days after Alexis Sanchez finally got his wish to leave Arsenal in a blockbuster move to Manchester United, Wenger was once again under fire from angry fans frustrated by the club’s failure to win the Premier League since 2004.But a week is a long time in the frenzied world of English football and by the final whistle at the Emirates Stadium on Saturday, the Arsenal manager was all smiles as he reflected on the speed at which perceptions can change.It was little wonder Wenger was in such an upbeat mood as he had just watched Gabon striker Aubameyang, a £56 million ($78 million) club-record signing from Borussia Dortmund, and Armenia midfielder Mkhitaryan produce superb first appearances at their new club’s stadium in a 5-1 demolition of Everton.Aubameyang’s pace and movement tormented the Everton defence as he netted with a composed first-half finish, while Mkhitaryan’s range of passing provided three assists as he linked up with fellow playmaker Mesut Ozil to devastating effect.A blur of one-touch passing, with Ozil, Mkhitaryan and Alex Iwobi switching positions behind Aubameyang, Arsenal’s effervescent performance was by far their most encouraging of a season that sees them engaged in a draining battle to qualify for the Champions League.Before kick-off in north London even that target seemed further away than ever.Not only was Arsenal’s malaise a cause for concern, but there were also doubts over Wenger’s moves for former Dortmund team-mates Aubameyang and Mkhitaryan.After a disappointing spell at United, Mkhitaryan was dismissed in some quarters as a fading force and nothing more than a makeweight in the deal that sent Sanchez to Old Trafford.– ‘Positive swing’ – Aubameyang’s goal record with Dortmund was exemplary but there were questions about his volatile personality. Even he described himself as a “crazy kid” — a trait that led him to him clashing with his Bundesliga club on several occasions.Those issues may yet resurface, but for now Wenger is keen to accentuate the positives after the eye-catching elan with which Mkhitaryan, making his first Arsenal start, and Aubameyang, on his debut, stole the show against Everton.Aubameyang ,Henrikh Mkhitaryan, Ramsay and Iwobi on satarday game against Everton“When you have new players it gives always a little positive swing, and it wakes everybody up as well, because there’s suddenly competition so they have to live with that as well,” said Wenger, who now faces the conundrum of how to use previous record signing Alexandre Lacazette.“Overall, I think as well we have a game based on team spirit so that kind of acceptance is very important and when they show on a football field that they accept our game, they are even easier to integrate into the team.“Your main target is just to get the players to enjoy the game they play, to share it with the fans, so when you have that positive experience it’s great for you.”Aubameyang’s impact was even more impressive given he had only two 45-minute training sessions and was battling an illness ahead of his debut.But it was Mkhitaryan, so assured in possession, who caught Wenger’s eye, drawing comparisons with Santi Cazorla, whose metronomic passing was such a key for Arsenal before his injury problems took hold.“There are similarities there. Santi was an exceptional football player. But he for sure has the technical level to play in our team,” Wenger said.“I met Mkhitaryan before, before he came here, because I always liked his game but he’s a player completely focused on football, dedicated totally to the game.“He looks happy to play football because he just loves it.”Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

Staying on feet pays off for persistent Gabriel Jesus

first_imgGabriel Jesus the Brazil strikerTeresópolis, Brazil | AFP |  At just 22 years of age, a back-to-back Premier League title winner with Manchester City and having scored 17 goals in 34 matches for five-time world champions Brazil, it might seem absurd to say it, but Gabriel Jesus was under pressure coming into the Copa America.The former Palmeiras forward — who won the Brazilian title there too before moving to City — seems to have the world at his feet and enviable statistics for a player of his age.Yet when he arrived at the Copa America on home soil, Jesus was the subject of severe criticism.The reason being: his lack of goals for Brazil.That’s a strange accusation to put at a guy scoring an average of one in every two matches and who, with six international goals in 2019, is having his most prolific calendar year in the Selecao’s yellow shirt.But the problem was that until he netted in the 2-0 Copa semi-final victory over arch rivals Argentina, Jesus’s last nine goals had come in friendlies.Crucially, he didn’t score at the World Cup last year and also missed an injury-time penalty in the 5-0 win over Peru earlier in the Copa.Scoring against Argentina lifted a huge weight off his shoulders.“I’m delighted about the goal because it’s something I’d been searching for since the first match at the Copa,” said Jesus.“In life, sometimes things don’t go as you’d like. You have to be persistent, things aren’t easy.”His last goal in a competitive match dated back to October 2017 and a World Cup qualifier against Chile.– ‘Stay on your feet’ –Not only did he take his chance against Argentina, popping up in the right place at the right time to tap home a cross from Roberto Firmino after great work from captain Dani Alves, but he also laid the second on a plate for his strike partner.Jesus won a 50-50 challenge with Argentina midfielder German Pezzella, shrugged off a full-blooded attempted foul from his City team-mate Nicolas Otamendi as he entered the area, cut inside a sliding Juan Foyth and slipped the ball to Firmino to score.Crucially, though, he stayed on his feet as Otamendi, beaten for pace, tried to grapple with Jesus.“I never thought about falling,” he said. “When I go down it’s because I’m really knocked off balance.“Sometimes when you fall for nothing, you lose a goalscoring chance and there’s no penalty, nothing. You need to keep your focus and stay on your feet.” That will have been music to the ears of many football fans fed up with seeing the absent Neymar rolling around theatrically on the turf after the faintest of touches.The Jesus-Firmino combination may never have come about had things gone entirely to plan for Brazil at the start of the Copa.Jesus was Brazil’s center-forward in Russia last year but he was left on the bench in favor of Firmino by coach Tite at the start of the Copa.However, after the drab 0-0 draw with Venezuela, Jesus was given his chance on the right of the three-pronged attack — the position where he began his career at Palmeiras.“We’ve shown that we know each other well and we play well together no matter the position,” said Firmino of his strike partnership with Jesus.– ‘Same scenario’ –The only previous honor Jesus has won with the national team, or the under-23s at least, was the Olympic Games gold medal in 2016.That too was gleaned at the Maracana where Sunday’s final will take place.And Jesus sees similarities between Brazil’s journey there and here during the Copa.Brazil drew their opening two matches at the Olympics, against South Africa and Iraq, before hitting their stride“It was a different situation but it was practically the same,” said Jesus.“Things didn’t start well because we were jeered during our first Olympics matches. It’s almost the same scenario.”Brazil were jeered during their first two Copa matches and at half-time of their quarter-final victory over Paraguay.Should Jesus score and help Brazil win on Sunday, though, he’ll hear nothing but cheers fill the Maracana to its rafters.“Hopefully I’ll be a champion again,” he said.Share on: WhatsApplast_img read more

Serena powers past No. 1-bound Osaka, Halep retires hurt

first_img“But I think there were chances where she hit shorter balls, but I wasn’t expecting her to hit the shorter balls, so I didn’t move up on time,” she said.In the semi-finals Williams will face Czech qualifier Marie Bouzkova, who advanced when Wimbledon champion Simona Halep retired with Achilles tendon trouble after dropping their first set 6-4.“I’ve always wanted to play Serena,” said Bouzkova, a 21-year-old ranked 91st in the world. “It’s always my dream to play against her.”Bouzkova notched her third straight win over a Grand Slam champion, having beaten former US Open winner Sloane Stephens and former French Open champ Jelena Ostapenko.But Halep marked her first win over a top-five player.The Romanian, who roared back from 0-4 down to level the set at 4-4 only to lose the last two games, said she had been bothered by her Achilles tendon from the start of the tournament.“And today I felt it more, so that’s why I decided to retire,” said Halep, no doubt exercising extra caution with the final Grand Slam of the year due to start on August 26.Despite the defeat, Osaka is assured of a return to world number one next week after the second-round exit of top-ranked Australian Ashleigh Barty and a quarter-final defeat for third-ranked Czech Karolina Pliskova.Canadian teen Bianca Andreescu ousted Pliskova 6-0, 2-6, 6-4 after one hour and 49 minutes to doom the Czech’s bid to regain the top spot for the first time since 2017.Andreescu advanced to a semi-final clash with American Sofia Kenin, who defeated Ukraine sixth seed Elina Svitolina 7-6 (7/2), 6-4.Share on: WhatsApp Getting there: American Serena Williams on the way to an emphatic straight-sets victory over Naomi Osaka in the quarter-finals of the WTA tournament in TorontoToronto, Canada | AFP |  Serena Williams won the rematch Friday, dominating Naomi Osaka 6-3, 6-4 to ensure the Japanese star won’t leave Toronto with a title to go with her number one world ranking.Williams fired 12 aces and didn’t face a break point as she beat Osaka for the first time in three meetings — avenging her shock loss in last year’s controversial US Open final in which the American star was docked a point and a game after losing her temper when warned about coaching.There was no such drama in Toronto, where Williams broke Osaka for a 5-3 lead in the first and closed out the opening set with a service winner.She broke again for a 2-1 lead in the second and never looked like surrendering the advantage.Even a run-in with the net cord — as she raced forward trying to run down a drop shot — didn’t faze her.“It hurt, but it wasn’t the end of the world,” Williams said.The American’s lone wobble came in the final game. After a pair of aces gave her a triple match point, Williams offered up a double fault and two backhands into the net before she closed it out with an ace on her fourth match point.“We haven’t played since New York, which was a really good match for her,” said Williams, adding that she feels her own game is coming on as she’d hoped in the buildup to this year’s US Open at Flushing Meadows.“I’m getting there,” said Williams, who hasn’t dropped a set this week as she pursues a fourth Toronto title to go with those she won in 2001, 2011 and 2013. “It’s definitely not where I want to be, but I’m getting there.”– Bouzkova books Serena ‘dream’ –Osaka said she played too defensively — something she said was hard to avoid when Williams was hitting 31 winners.last_img read more

Jeffrey Epstein Found Injured in his Cell

first_imgWas he trying to kill himself, get a transfer or was he attacked?Accused child sex trafficker and Palm Beach County millionaire Jeffrey Epstein is recovering after being found injured in his jail cell in New York. A New York TV station is reporting Epstein was found last night in the fetal position on the floor of his cell in a semi-conscious state with marks on his neck.Investigators have not determined what happened to him, but speculation ranges from a suicide attempt to a possible assault, and he’s being kept on a suicide watch.Epstein, who has pleaded not guilty to federal conspiracy and sex trafficking charges, is due in court next Wednesday.last_img read more

New Jersey governor orders residents to stay home

first_imgIn a tweet posted on Saturday, New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy canceled all public gatherings and ordered residents to stay home.In the tweet Gov. Murphy said that he knows the measures are aggressive and may upset some people but he has a personal responsibility to make sure the people of New Jersey are healthy:“I take personal responsibility for the public health and safety of New Jersey,” he tweeted. “If you are unhappy about our aggressive social distancing measures, I’m sorry. But your safety is my highest priority.”Also under the order, nonessential retail businesses who choose to remain open must close their doors by 9 p.m.last_img read more

4 men charged for breaking into woman’s home to steal her stimulus check

first_imgFour men have been arrested after they allegedly broke into a woman’s home and confined her for hours in an effort to steal her stimulus check.The incident occurred in Indiana around 1:00 A.M. Sunday.Officials at the Lake Station Police Department say the victim contacted them around 5:00 am stating that four men that she knew broke in to her home and held her against her will for hours to steal the check.The victim told police that one of the men immediately took her phone so that she could not call the police and another held her at gunpoint.The men eventually left but told the victim not to go anyway because they would be back.Once she was sure they were gone, the woman drove to the police station to report the incident.The four suspects, identified as Paul Blankenship, Phillip Guzman, Jacob Baughman, were located a short while later and arrested.They have since been charged with burglary with a deadly weapon, armed robbery, criminal confinement, among other charges.The men have all been taken to the Lake County Jail where they are being held on a $75,000 bond.last_img read more

State Transfers Nursing Home Residents with COVID-19 to Hospitals, as DeSantis Seeks Facilities

first_imgUp to now, 57 residents have been moved out of Manor Pines Convalescent Center in Wilton Manors, along with 20 from Alexander Nininger State Veterans Nursing Home, into four Broward hospitals. Meanwhile, residents have been transported from Renaissance Health and Rehabilitation in Palm Beach County. Last Monday, Molly McKinstry, deputy secretary for the Agency for Health Care Administration, told nursing home administrators that any one of their residents who is taken to a hospital must test negative for coronavirus twice within 48 hours to be returned to the nursing home. Nearly 62 percent of coronavirus deaths in Florida have been residents age 75 or older. At a Wednesday news briefing, Gov. Ron DeSantis said, “Getting the covid positive residents out of nursing homes will save lives. We appreciate the hospitals that helped with this.” Gov. Ron DeSantis met Wednesday with state health officials to provide an update on efforts to protect residents of nursing homes.Since Sunday, the state has been mass-transferring residents with coronavirus from such facilities that have outbreaks and to hospital, whether or not they show any symptoms.center_img The Agency for Health Care Administration recently issued a directive outlining strict protocols for how a facility is required to respond when it has at least one case of the virus. Additionally,, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which oversees Medicare and Medicaid, has issued new federal flexibility in our state to allow hospitals to bill at an established rate so they can accept residents who are positive for COVID-19 but may not need to be hospitalized.Florida acted early to protect seniors in long-term care facilities by prohibiting hospitals from sending COVID-positive residents back to those facilities. Thank you to Emmett Reed from the @FHCA for pointing out that this saved lives. pic.twitter.com/UckLCe91th— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) May 13, 2020 DeSantis added that he wants to establish state-supported “COVID-dedicated facilities” for long-term care residents. The state has already established one such center in Jacksonville, and will soon open another one, in Miami-Dade. “Our goal is to get all long-term care facilities in a self-sustaining rhythm,” the governor added.last_img read more