Lyon County, Iowa — Weather facts, community announcements, church announcements, menus, school activities, and more.

Heard on KIWA-AM 1550 every weekday morning at 9:00 AM, and available here for 24 hours afterwards. (Friday edition is available until Monday edition is uploaded.)

As reported by KIWA News Director and Rock Rapids resident Scott Van Aartsen

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May 29, 2017 - 3:38 pm - Posted in News

Rock Rapids, Iowa — If things go according to plan, it’s going to be a busy Tuesday in Lyon County District Court in Rock Rapids.

The trial of 41-year old Perry Vande Kieft ended in a guilty verdict on Thursday, April 6th.
According to court records, Vande Kieft of Inwood was accused of having sexual contact with an 11-year-old girl in the spring of 2015 and again in February or March of 2016 at Vande Kieft’s home. His request for a new trial was denied by the court and he faces sentencing at 10 a.m. According to Iowa Code, a class B felony is punishable by up to 25 years in prison.

Also scheduled for 10 a.m. is the arraignment of 23-year-old Julian Barrientos. The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office says Barrientos of Doon failed to pull over for a deputy in April and reached speeds in excess of 90 miles-per-hour while eluding the deputy. They say he almost struck two patrol cars and failed to stop for a stop sign. He is accused of pulling into a rural driveway and failing to comply with deputies, resulting in the deputies deploying their tasers. He’s charged with felony eluding and Operating While Intoxicated.

Finally, also scheduled for this Tuesday in Lyon County District Court is the arraignment of an Ashton woman who was accused of passing stolen, forged checks in multiple jurisdictions in western Iowa. In a number of her other cases, prosecutors were able to strike plea bargains in exchange for 24-year-old Nikarra Macmain’s guilty plea. In Lyon County, she is charged with two felony counts of forgery. There’s been no word if a plea agreement is in the works for her Lyon County charges.

Northwest Iowa — With the new fireworks law having been signed by (now former) Governor Terry Branstad, fireworks and what is allowed has been a topic of discussion by the public and by local government leaders.

A couple of weeks ago, we told you that some northwest Iowa towns are considering stricter restrictions on fireworks than the new state law, and at least one is choosing to ban them altogether.

We recently spoke with county officials in our area to ask them if they plan any stricter rules on fireworks than the state law. To date, none of the four northwest Iowa counties have enacted any more rules on fireworks, but of course, that’s subject to change.

In O’Brien County, Auditor Barb Rohwer says the Board of Supervisors has talked about the issue and have decided not to pursue tighter restrictions at this time. She says if it becomes an issue, they have said they will re-address it at that time. Rohwer reminds people that the county does have a permit process in place for larger displays such as town or large-group celebrations.

In Sioux County, officials report that the county board has not discussed the issue, but note that it could come up in the future.

Lyon County Auditor Jen Smit says the Lyon County Board has not discussed the issue either, but it could come up for discussion at their next meeting, which is scheduled for Monday, June 12th.

In Osceola County, auditor Barb Echter says the issue was on their agenda at their last meeting, but they tabled it until their next meeting, which is on Tuesday, June 13th. She says so far they have done nothing with it.

Law officers are noting more fireworks calls. They remind people that even under the new law, fireworks are not allowed during most of the year and are only legal to use during two windows: for about five weeks between June 1st through July 8th, and for about three weeks between December 10th through January 3rd.

May 25, 2017 - 5:00 pm - Posted in News

seasons-logo[1]Spencer, Iowa — Soon, when a mental health or substance abuse crisis happens in northwest Iowa, there will be another option.

Seasons Center in Spencer reports that they have received funding from Northwest Iowa Care Connections to provide mobile crisis services in six counties in northwest Iowa beginning January 1, 2018. The mobile crisis services will cover Clay, Dickinson, O’Brien, Osceola, Lyon and Palo Alto counties.

Christina Eggink-Postma, Vice President of Program Coordination and Compliance at Seasons says they are really excited to be able to start offering this service next year.

She says that the purpose of the proposed project is to provide a call center, on-site screening, consultation, treatment engagement, brief treatment, and referral for residents of Northwest Iowa Care Connections who are in need of crisis services regardless of funding.

She says before, it was a mixed bag of responses, and sometimes they were actually able to send someone out. And she says their home health team deals with crises too when they’re on-site, but this will take it to a new level.

She says that Seasons will begin recruiting and training staff and providing education on the mobile crisis prior to implementing services beginning January 1.

Kim Scorza, President/CEO, for Seasons says Seasons staff are excited and grateful to be chosen as a recipient of these grant funds. She says the funding will allow them to better meet the needs of their clients and patients in a community-based setting. She says they also greatly appreciate Kim Wilson, Chief Executive Officer at Northwest Iowa Care Connections, for her leadership and the board for making the money available to those in crisis.

For more information on services provided by Seasons, Autumn’s Center, and Camp Autumn, you can visit: or call 1-800-242-5101.

May 24, 2017 - 4:03 pm - Posted in News

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A Rock Rapids teen faces a felony sex abuse charge after an alleged incident in December 2016 in Rock Rapids.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office reports that they have arrested 19-year-old Trysten Robinson of Rock Rapids on an active warrant for Sexual Abuse in the 3rd Degree. Robinson’s arrest was made following an investigation into the alleged incident.

Robinson is accused of sexual contact with a girl who was 14 years old at the time of the incident.

Robinson is currently being held on a $15,000 cash-only bond at the Lyon County Jail.

Sexual abuse in the Third Degree is a class C felony. According to Iowa Code, Robinson could face up to ten years in prison and a fine of between a thousand and ten thousand dollars if he’s convicted.

May 24, 2017 - 3:12 pm - Posted in News

Rock Rapids, Iowa — Sheriff Stewart Vander Stoep of Lyon County says it doesn’t happen very often, but they’ve arrested someone who they believe scammed a Lyon County resident through Facebook in March.

Many Facebook users know that sometimes they get friend requests from people who they’re already friends with on Facebook, and that these often turn out to be scams. Vander Stoep says this was a similar situation. He says the victim received a message that they believed was from a relative in the area. The message said that the victim’s name was on a list of people who qualified for a grant, and all the victim had to do was pay a fee. The Sheriff says that the victim decided to try to get the grant, and when it came to paying the fees, the scammer allegedly told the victim to wire the money to him through Walmart.

He says the victim actually sent the money but eventually realized they had been scammed and called the Sheriff’s Office, where they started looking into the circumstances surrounding the crime. He says the receiving Walmart was in Paris, Texas. He says they contacted the Paris, Texas Police Department, and their officers were able to find video footage at Walmart of the alleged scammer picking up the money. He says by matching the timestamp on video to the time of the crime, they were able to issue a warrant for an arrest, and the Paris Police Department was able to apprehend 18-year-old Wayne Willey of Paris in connection with the crime.

Vander Stoep says Lyon County authorities traveled to Texas to pick up Willey this past weekend. He has been charged with theft in the 2nd degree, a class D Felony.

Willey is currently being held at the Lyon County Jail on a $8,000 cash-only bond.

Sheriff Vander Stoep says he knows that people hear this all the time, but he reminds people that if anybody’s contacting you asking for money to be put on an iTunes card, a gift card, a money order, or through Western Union, it’s probably a scam. He also says he wants to thank the Paris, Texas Police Department. He says without their work, they couldn’t have made this arrest.

May 24, 2017 - 12:44 pm - Posted in News

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A request for a new trial has been denied in the case of an Inwood man who was convicted of felony sex charges in April.

The trial of 41-year old Perry Vande Kieft ended in a guilty verdict on Thursday, April 6th.

According to court records, 41-year-old Perry Vande Kieft of Inwood was accused of having sexual contact with an 11-year-old girl in the spring of 2015 and again in February or March of 2016 at Vande Kieft’s home.

Vande Kieft was convicted of sexual abuse in the second degree, a class B felony.

Vande Kieft’s attorney, Ned Bjornstad had claimed that the evidence against Vande Kieft was based almost entirely upon the testimony of the victim. He says there was no medical or scientific evidence to corroborate her testimony. The motion Bjornstad filed with the court said the victim’s testimony was “thoroughly incompetent and insufficient as evidence.” He wrote that in one instance the testimony was “so incredulous as to render it incompetent.”

Bjornstad went on to say that the current status of the law does not require the state to specifically identify the date of the alleged act. He said that the witness claimed it happened “almost every day,” and that statement, “deprives the Defendant of any meaningful ability to defend himself…”

He said that when Vande Kieft was asked to explain why the victim would make these statements if they were not true, it shifted the burden of proof to the Defendant to provide an answer to establish his innocence.

Bjornstad called for a mistrial and asked for a new trial.

According to court records, in an order filed on Tuesday (May 23rd), Judge Patrick Carr overruled and denied the request for a new trial. Vande Kieft’s sentencing is set for this coming Tuesday, May 30th in Lyon County District Court. According to Iowa Code, a class B felony is punishable by up to 25 years in prison.

May 23, 2017 - 4:31 pm - Posted in News

gavel_sxc[1]Northwest Iowa — All state court offices in Iowa will be closed this coming Friday, May 26th, due to budget constraints.

According to an order from Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Cady, all court offices, including district court offices and the office of the clerk of the appellate courts, will be closed, and all court personnel except judges and magistrates will be placed on unpaid leave status for May 26th.  Cady writes that judges and any magistrate scheduled to work on that day will work in their chambers or take vacation on that court closure day.

Cady’s order went on to say that any filing of a motion in a pending action, or if an appeal falls on the day when the clerk’s office is closed, the time will be extended to include the next day the clerk’s office is open.

The Iowa Judiciary’s budget was cut by more than $5-million for fiscal year 2017, with another $3-million being cut after lawmakers resumed their work in January of this year, according to Cady.  He says that, after the initial budget cuts, the Supreme Court approved a hiring freeze for all vacancies on the judicial branch, holding open judicial vacancies for an average of 6-months, reducing travel by 10%, reducing furniture and non-IT equipment by 50%, shifting some funding for IT operations to the Court Technology Fund, and instituting a moratorium on the expansion of specialty courts.

Cady says the additional $3-million budget cut led to the one-day closing, this Friday, of all court offices in the state.

Northwest Iowa — Monday’s crop report from the United States Department of Agriculture National Agriculture Statistics Service says 92% of the state’s corn acreage has been planted.  Here in northwest Iowa, we’re slightly above that level at 95%.  The report says this year’s corn planting is 3-days behind last year, but 2-days ahead of the 5-year average.

Soybean planting has reached 62% complete, 2-days behind last year, but 1-day ahead of average.

Iowa State University Agronomist Paul Kassel, who is based in Spencer, monitors 10 counties here in northwest Iowa.

Farmers had only two days suitable for field work during the past week, according to the USDA report. Kassel says standing water in some fields is causing problems for farmers.

Corn planted after mid-May often yields less and Kassel said cool temperatures are impeding corn plants already in the ground. The USDA report shows planting progress is slowest in south-central Iowa, where 78-percent of the corn and 42-percent of soybeans were in the ground as of Sunday.  Northwest and central Iowa are at the top end of the spectrum, with 95% of corn, and 68% of soybeans planted through this past weekend.

Rock Rapids, Iowa — An Ashton woman who was accused of passing stolen, forged checks in multiple jurisdictions in western Iowa faces a preliminary hearing in Lyon County this Tuesday, May 23rd.

In all, 24-year-old Nikarra Macmain of Ashton is facing or has faced over 30 counts of forgery, several counts of identity theft, theft, and lottery forgery, and various other charges, several of which were dismissed in plea agreements when Macmain agreed to plead guilty.

In Lyon County, she is charged with two felony counts of forgery.

Macmain also still faces one count of forgery in Sioux County.

She has faced forgery and related charges in Clay, O’Brien, Palo Alto, Harrison, and Dickinson counties as well.

Doon, Iowa — A Rock Valley woman was taken to a Sioux Falls hospital after an accident on Friday, May 19th.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office reports that about 5:45 p.m., 47-year-old Kary Holliday-Stiens of Rock Valley was eastbound on 270th street near Dogwood Avenue, about seven miles west-southwest of Doon in a 2013 Chevrolet Suburban. The Sheriff’s Office reports that her vehicle veered toward the north ditch.

Her Suburban then struck a utility pole belonging to Northwest REC, then entered a crop field, traveled about 100 yards through the field and struck a creek embankment before coming to rest.

The Doon Rescue Squad took Holliday-Stiens to Hegg Memorial Hosptial in Rock Valley. The deputy who filed the report says she was later taken to a Sioux Falls hospital.

The crop field, owned by Lance VanderPol, sustained about $500 in damage. The cost to repair the utility pole was estimated at $1000. Damage to Stiens’ Suburban was estimated at $10,000.

The Sheriff’s Office says the accident remains under investigation.