January 31, 2018 - 3:58 pm - Posted in News

Sioux City, Iowa — A former Sioux Center Christian School Teacher will not be released on bond, and will stay in federal custody until his federal trial. That’s the ruling of a federal judge on Monday.

Court records indicate 36-year-old Curtis Van Dam was already facing state charges of over 140 counts of various sex crimes with students when he was arrested last week on new, federal charges. Authorities say the new charges are from a grand jury, and are for the same allegations as the charges that were filed in state court, and involve the alleged crimes of Sexual Exploitation of a Child and Possession of Child Pornography.

This week, U.S. Magistrate Judge Kelly Mahoney ordered Van Dam to remain in federal custody until trial. Her order said that she took the action because there is probable cause to believe that Van Dam committed an offense involving a minor under 18, and the court concluded that “no condition or combination of conditions of release will reasonably assure the safety of any other person and the community.”

Court records say that Van Dam’s attorney did present evidence against the detention order, but after considering the presumption and other factors, Judge Mahoney felt the detention was warranted. She says the weight of evidence against Van Dam is strong.

Van Dam’s federal trial at this point is set to begin on April 2nd. A status conference is scheduled for March 2nd.

Meanwhile, Van Dam’s state case is also still active. A pretrial conference is scheduled for this coming Monday, February 5th. That trial is scheduled at this point for March 6th.

Orange City, Iowa — A business building was damaged in a fire on Tuesday, January 30, 2018 in Orange City.

According to Orange City Fire Chief Denny Vander Wel, about 5:00 p.m., the Orange City Fire Department was called to the report of a structure fire at Elite Auto Body and Digital Plus- US Cellular on Highway 10 West.

The chief says the fire department saw heavy smoke from the outside as they approached the scene. He says people who noticed the fire tried to put it out with dry chemical extinguishers. Vander Wel says firefighters also used dry chemical extinguishers at first since it’s a metal building and there was an obvious electrical short going on. He says once the utility department shut off the power, they switched to a water extinguisher. He says they also used a Sawzall to cut out part of the building that had been burning so it wouldn’t re-ignite. He says the fire and smoke were limited to the outside of the building and inside the wall. He says there was no fire or smoke damage to the inside. He says the black smoke was caused by burning vinyl siding.

Vander Wel says no injuries were reported.

The fire department was assisted by the Alton Fire Department. Vander Wel says they did ask for Sioux Center’s RIT team to come to the fire, but firefighters had the fire out before they got there, so they were told to turn around. Vander Wel says the RIT team is basically a team to rescue firefighters in an emergency situation, and he says he called them as a precaution.

He says the cause of the fire appeared to be an electrical short in the meter base.

Chief Vander Wel reports that there was moderate damage. He figures the exterior damage at around $20,000 but he says electrical equipment plugged in may be damaged, so that figure could go up quickly.

He says they used minimal water to fight the fire, and crews were on scene for about an hour.

Hospers, Iowa– A truck was damaged in a fire on Saturday, January 27, 2018 in Hospers.

According to Hospers Fire Chief Jason Overmole, about 8:40 a.m., the Hospers Fire Department was called to the report of a truck fire at Den Hartog Industries.

The chief says the fire department saw some fire in the engine compartment of the truck as they approached the scene. He says they used water to fight the fire. But he credits the employees with backing the truck out of the building and keeping the fire at bay with fire extinguishers until the fire department arrived to finish the job.

Overmole says no injuries were reported.

He says the cause of the fire appeared to be electrical in nature.

Chief Overmole reports that there was minimal damage to the truck, and it was contained to the engine compartment.

He says they used under a hundred gallons of water to fight the fire, and the nine firefighters who responded were on scene for about a half hour.

Overmole says, “Even if it seems like a situation that a person can handle themselves it’s best to call 911. Fires can escalate quickly and it is better for emergency personnel to be on the way sooner rather than later.”

January 29, 2018 - 5:13 pm - Posted in News

Ireton, Iowa– A house was damaged in a fire on Saturday, January 27, 2018 near Ireton.

According to Ireton Fire Chief Richard Steckelberg, about 7:50 p.m., the Ireton Fire Department was called to the report of a house on fire at 27506 C12, a mile and a half east of Craig or five miles south of Ireton and a mile and a half east.

The chief says the fire department saw the rear of the house and the attic on fire as they approached the scene. He says they started with an external attack and then mounted an interior attack.

Steckelberg says no injuries were reported.

The fire department was assisted by the Le Mars Fire Department.

He says the cause of the fire appeared to have been a cord that got too hot. The cord had been connected to a heat lamp.

Chief Steckelberg reports that there was extensive damage but that he thought it looked repairable.

He says they used about 600 gallons of water to fight the fire, and the approximately 35 firefighters who responded were on scene for about an hour and forty-five minutes.

January 29, 2018 - 2:58 pm - Posted in Sports

Four Northwestern College men’s track and field athletes took first and qualified for nationals in their respective event at the Dennis Young Invite held today in Storm Lake, Iowa.

Competing in his first multi-event of the season, Calvin Korver of Orange City, qualified for nationals in the heptathlon with 4,658 points, fourth best in the NAIA and second best in the GPAC. Korver won the event by over 600 points and posted the top score in four of the seven events (60m, 1000m, High Jump and Shot Put). He finished second in the other three events (60m hurdles, pole vault and long jump).

Aaron Lemon met the provisional mark and won the 600m with a time of 1:22.06, just .06 off the auto mark.

Tim Rose won the mile and met the auto mark once again with a time of 4:18, best in the GPAC and fourth fastest in the NAIA. The senior has also qualified in the 1000m where he is ranked sixth in the NAIA and first in the conference.

Cody Bauman, of Inwood, met the provisional mark once again and won the shot put with a toss of 15.25m, nearly one full meter better than the second place athlete. Bauman, who also met the mark last week at SDSU, is currently ranked seventh in the GPAC.

Northwestern finished third out of 13 teams with 93 points and turned in 12 top five finishes.

January 29, 2018 - 9:14 am - Posted in Sports

Darbi Gustafson netted a game-high 24 points in leading 10th-ranked Northwestern to its ninth straight win, defeating College of Saint Mary 88-45 this afternoon at the Bultman Center. The Red Raiders improve to 12-2 in the GPAC, 17-5 overall.

Gustafson matched her career-high in points from earlier this season and also pulled down 10 rebounds in registering her sixth double-double of the season. Kassidy De Jong scored 13 points, grabbed seven boards and dished out three assists and both Paige Danner (11) and Anna Kiel (10) were also in double figures.

With the game tied at two, a De Jong three-pointer began an 11-0 Northwestern run to put the hosts up for good 13-2. Five different players scored for NW during the run as they held CSM scoreless for nearly three minutes. Later in the quarter, Gustafson scored on a putback to cap a 7-0 run to give the Red Raiders a 22-6 advantage and led 25-8 at quarter’s end.

Northwestern continued to roll, outscoring the Flames 14-1 at the start of the second quarter to take a 39-9 lead after a free throw by Kiel. A three-point play by De Jong during the final seconds gave Northwestern its largest lead, 51-18, at the half. The Red Raiders shot 57% in the first half and limited CSM to a mere 28% from the field and 0-10 from the three-point arc.

The Red Raiders pushed their lead to as much as 45 (70-25) after a three-pointer by Erika Sage near the end of the third quarter. Every Red Raider played at least five minutes as the hosts led by at least 36 points for the entirety of the final quarter.

Northwestern shot 49% from the field and held a commanding 57-30 edge on the glass, pulling down 18 offensive rebounds. Renee Maneman dished out 11 assists, her 10th game with 10+ assists this season. This is the longest win streak since the 2013-14 season for the Red Raiders.

Tyler Sumpter led College of Saint Mary (1-14, 3-21) with 12 points, the only Flames’ player in double figures. CSM shot 26% for the game, 12% (2/17) from the three-point line.

January 29, 2018 - 9:12 am - Posted in Sports

Midland survived a Dordt College threat to take a four point decision from the Defenders in Sioux Center on Saturday, January 27.

The Defenders started behind and managed to take am 11-10 lead on a Chandler Brunsting field goal with 16:26 left in the half. Midland responded with a 10-0 run and eventually got up 32-22 with 6:03 left in the half.

Dordt rallied with a 9-0 run capped by a Jesse Jansma field goal at the 3:51 mark and the Midland lead ended up at 44-42 when halftime came.

Dordt used early momentum in the second half to lead 55-48 and the Defenders were still up by six with 13:18 left after Andrew O’Donnell knocked down a three-point shot. A seven point run for Midland followed and the difference grew to five before Chandler Brunsting hit two free throws and Jesse Jansma had back to back three-point shots for a brief 76-73 lead with 6:41 left in the contest.

The score was tied at 79-79 and Midland took the lead for good on a pair of free throws and held on after building an eight point lead at one point in the final minutes of play.

January 29, 2018 - 9:09 am - Posted in Sports

Dordt trailed once in its 18 point win over the Midland Warriors Saturday afternoon at the De Witt Gym in Sioux Center. The Defenders outscored the visitors in each quarter to forge their sixth win of the conference season and earned a season series split with the Warriors with the win.

Dordt got out to an 18-13 lead after one quarter. Joelle Overkamp gave Midland their only lead of the game with a free throw at the 5:46 mark of the quarter. Rachel Evavold followed moments later with a basket to give Dordt a 10-9 lead they never relinquished. Siennah Stamness had a basket with less than ten seconds left in the quarter to give Dordt an 18-13 lead.

The Defenders never led by less than three in the second quarter and a Payton Harmsen three-point shot put Dordt up 37-28 going into the halftime.

Midland made another charge to within four in the third quarter but Dordt again had an answer with Evavold exending the lead back to 11 at the end of the quarter with a three-point play. The Warriors didn’t have much left in the fourth quarter and Dordt extended the lead to 19 before settling for the 75-57 win.

January 28, 2018 - 5:12 pm - Posted in Obituaries

Gerald Croatt, age 94 of Sheldon, IA, formerly of Hospers, IA, passed away at Sanford Senior Care Center in Sheldon on Saturday, January 27, 2018.

Memorial services will be held on Wednesday, January 31st at 10:30 a.m. at St. Anthony’s Catholic Church in Hospers, IA. Visitation will also be held at the church on Wednesday, January 31st, one hour prior to the service, beginning at 9:30 a.m. The family will be present at that time.

Burial will take place at St. Anthony’s Catholic Cemetery near Hospers, IA.

The Sanborn Funeral Home is in charge of the arrangements for 94-year-old Gerald Croatt of Sheldon, IA, formerly of Hospers, IA.

January 26, 2018 - 11:14 pm - Posted in Sports

The MOC-Floyd Valley Dutch and Sheldon Orabs split a conference doubleheader Friday night in Orange City. The Dutch took the girls game 58-27, while the boys game went to the Orabs 61-47.

The girls game started with MOC-FV jumping out to an early lead, and after one led 21-9. The Dutch then didn’t score for the first four minutes of the second quarter, but after two, had a 32-13 lead. MOC-FV extended their lead in the third to 41-20, and went on to win 58-27.

The Dutch had three players in double figures. Zoey Heemstra had a game high fifteen points, Lily DeHaan added eleven, and Jazlin DeHaan had ten points. Sheldon got a team high nine points from Mackenzie Wagner.

With the win, MOC-Floyd Valley improves to 8-10 on the year, and 8-7 in the Siouxland. Sheldon falls to 3-15 on the season, and 2-13 in the conference.

The boys contest was another long range clinic, with both teams hitting thirteen three pointers in the first half. Sheldon started the contest with an 11-0 run and led after the first 18-10. Heading into intermission, the Orabs extended their lead to 34-22. After three, Sheldon led 46-32 and went on to the 61-47 win.

Sheldon had three players in double figures. Tyler Merley had a team high seventeen points. Kyle Boerhave had sixteen, and Jaden Kleinhesselink added eleven. The Dutch got a game high eighteen from Trenton De Haan, and eleven from Alex Van Kalsbeek.

With the win, Sheldon improves to 15-2 on the year, and 12-2 in the conference. The Dutch fall to 8-8 on the season, and 8-6 in the Siouxland.

Up next for the Orabs is a home contest against Sibley-Ocheyedan on Tuesday, January 30th. MOC-Floyd Valley is on the road to Okoboji on Tuesday.