Rock Rapids, Iowa — The Rock Rapids City Council met in regular session at the Forster Community Center on Monday evening, May 8th.

The council voted to remove a 20-acre strip of land from an existing commercial urban renewal area and place it in its own residential urban renewal area. They also set up a tax increment financing district for this area, which is to be a new affordable housing project called Sunset Court. The area is south of the Borman Forster Soccer Fields and west of the current end of South Sixth Avenue.

The council approved applying for three mini-grants from the Lyon County Riverboat Foundation. According to Mayor Jason Chase, with these type of grants, the City of Rock Rapids is limited to applying for three grants. The council chose to apply for a grant for a defibrillator and 25 chaise lounge chairs, both for the Rock Rapids Swimming Pool; and new lounge furniture at the Rock Rapids Municipal Airport.

The next city council meeting is scheduled for Monday, May 22nd at 5:45 p.m. at the Forster Community Center.

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A Doon man facing a laundry list of charges after an April pursuit through southern Lyon County now faces an arraignment on those charges.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office says 23-year-old Julian Barrientos of Doon failed to pull over for a deputy 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 is charged with eluding, a class D felony; Operating While Intoxicated, Second Offense, an Aggravated Misdemeanor; and simple misdemeanor counts of:

  • Driving while license suspended
  • Passing too near an intersection
  • Driving on the wrong side of a two-way highway
  • Speeding (90 mph in a 55 mph zone)
  • Reckless driving
  • Careless driving
  • Failure to obey a traffic control device
  • Interference with official acts
  • Barrientos’ arraignment has been set for Monday, May 15th.

May 5, 2017 - 5:52 pm - Posted in News


Orange City, Iowa — Court dates have been set in the case of a man arrested on a felony drug charge near Sioux Center.

The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office reports that on April 17, one of their deputies arrested 43-year-old Omar Bautista Rodriguez of Sioux City. Authorities say Bautista‐Rodriguez was the subject of a joint drug investigation between the Sioux and Lyon County Sheriff’s Offices, and that he was charged with delivery of a controlled substance, a class C felony.

Court records say Bautista Rodriguez filed a written arraignment and a plea of not guilty. Judge Jeffrey Neary has scheduled a pre-trial conference for Monday, June 12th, and a jury trial for Tuesday, July 18th in Sioux County District Court.

May 4, 2017 - 2:02 pm - Posted in News

Lyon County, Iowa — Yesterday we reminded you about the IRS scams that rear their ugly head this time of year.  Now it’s happened again, this time in Lyon County.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office is urging residents to be on high alert for scams.  The Sheriff’s Office tells us they are currently investigating a case in which the scammer identified themselves as an IRS agent.  This scammer then reportedly called the victim using a spoof caller ID app, so that it appeared as if the Lyon County Sheriff’s Office was calling them.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office wants you to be aware that local law enforcement does NOT contact people for the IRS.  If you are in question about whether a call is legitimate, the Sheriff’s Office advises that you please contact your local law enforcement.

May 3, 2017 - 3:42 pm - Posted in News

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A special prosecutor has been named in the case of a Rock Rapids woman facing felony drug charges.

According to court records, Lyon County Attorney Shayne Mayer applied for the special prosecutor last week. District Court Judge Nancy Whittenburg approved the appointment of attorney Micah Schreurs. Schreurs serves as the O’Brien County Attorney.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office advises that the case arose when their office received a call in February alleging the theft of medication.

They report that 30-year-old Cassandra Joy VanBerkum of Rock Rapids was charged with prohibited acts – schedule 1, 2, or 3 controlled substance, a class C felony. She was also charged with tampering with records, an aggravated misdemeanor.

A preliminary hearing, which was to have happened on Tuesday, May 2nd, was waived by the defense.

May 2, 2017 - 10:16 pm - Posted in News

Boyden, Iowa — A Doon woman was taken to a hospital after an accident in Boyden on Tuesday, May 2nd.

The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office reports that about at 8:30 a.m., 43-year-old Amanda Nordgaard of Sheldon was driving a 2017 Jeep Wrangler westbound on Highway 18 in Boyden. They report that 27-year-old Katy Gilbert of Doon was driving a 2001 Chrysler Town & Country minivan westbound following Nordgaard. Nordegaard slowed to turn right onto Main Street and the Gilbert minivan struck the Nordegaard Jeep.

The Boyden Ambulance took Gilbert to Sanford Sheldon hospital. Nordegaard reported minor injuries and sought medical attention on her own.

The Nordgaard Jeep sustained about $4,000 in damage. The Gilbert Chrysler sustained about $6,000 in damage.

Gilbert was cited on a charge of following too closely.

The Sheriff’s Office reports that the Boyden Fire Department, Boyden Ambulance Squad and the Iowa State Patrol assisted them.

May 2, 2017 - 2:48 pm - Posted in News

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A man who faced a laundry list of charges after a pursuit in Rock Rapids last November faces a five-year prison term.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office says that on Tuesday, November 22, 2016, one of their deputies saw a vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed and passing in a prohibited area. The deputy attempted to stop the vehicle but it continued traveling at a high rate of speed and passed vehicles in prohibited areas.

Read The Full Story…

Rock Rapids, Iowa — A Worthington man who allegedly stole a car from the Nobles County Jail parking lot, eluded officers, and then crashed the car south of George has been sentenced to prison for his Iowa charges.

The Lyon County Attorney’s Office reports that 20-year-old Marlon Cardona has been sentenced in Lyon County District Court for the offense of Eluding, a Class D Felony.

According to Captain Kevin Flynn of the Worthington, Minnesota Police Department, the incident started on December 9, 2016, when someone came to the Prairie Justice Center in Worthington and while the person was in the building, his car, which was unlocked and had the engine running, was stolen from the parking lot. The Prairie Justice Center is the location of the Nobles County Sheriff’s Office, the jail, and other government offices. Flynn says officers located the vehicle in Worthington and after they attempted to stop it, the driver fled, starting a chase which went west on I-90 and then south into Lyon County.

The Lyon County Sheriff’s Office says the pursuit continued southbound on Jefferson Avenue and then curved westbound on 220th Street, a mile south of George.

The sheriff’s office says the pursued vehicle left the road and rolled on 220th Street about a half mile east of Ironwood Avenue. They report that the driver of the vehicle was ejected. The county attorney’s office says he tried to flee on foot. The female passenger in the vehicle was extricated by the George Rescue and Fire Department, as she was still sitting in the front seat with her arm pinned under the front door when they arrived. Both individuals were taken to the Sanford Rock Rapids Hospital. The accident report from the Iowa State Patrol indicates the victims were further transported to Sanford USD Medical Center in Sioux Falls. The stolen car, a 2007 Honda, according to the Iowa State Patrol, sustained about $6500 in damages, which was enough to total the car.

After sentencing on Monday, May 1st, Cardona was placed in the custody of the Iowa Department of Corrections for an indeterminate term not to exceed five years. He was ordered to pay restitution to the passenger who was injured. Prior to being sentenced, Cardona had spent 143 days in the Lyon County Jail.

Sioux Center, Iowa — Thanks to a recent grant, lifesaving breast cancer screenings are available to northwest Iowa women who do not have the insurance or the money to pay for them.

Due to a grant of over $17,000 from the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Siouxland Affiliate, Promise Community Health Center in Sioux Center can provide free screenings and line up free mammograms for area women. Read The Full Story…

Resilience FlyerRock Rapids, Iowa — A movie explaining what researchers think is a link between adverse childhood experiences and destructive behavior and disease in adulthood is going to be shown in Rock Rapids next week. And local health and child development experts say everyone should see it.

Shannon Klarenbeek, a registered nurse and Public Health Nurse at Health Services of Lyon County says that the impetus for the movie was when two researchers in California were dealing with a couple of topics and found that their cause may be related. She says one researcher was researching why a group of overweight people lost a lot of weight and then gained it all back. Another was researching how childhood trauma can affect people’s adult lives.

We also talked to Lori Hayungs, a Family Life Educator with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. She says their target audience for the movie, called Resilience, The Biology of Stress and The Science Of Hope is quite broad.


Hayungs says adverse childhood experiences are actually more common than you might think.


The movie will be shown and discussed on Friday, May 5th from 11:30 until 1 at the Frontier Bank basement in Rock Rapids. A lunch will be provided. You can register at tinyurl.com/resiliencerockrapids.com. You can also call your local extension office for more information.