The Ottumwa Courier

Breaking News

AP Iowa

February 3, 2014

Iowa county won't release stun gun incident info

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Muscatine County officials are refusing to release the medical records of a woman who was shocked with a stun gun four times last fall as officers tried to get her to change clothing.

The woman, Marie Franks, has asked officials to release the records to the Des Moines Register ( ), but so far officials have refused.

Video of the incident shows Franks cursing at jail staff and swinging her arms apparently to keep jail staff away. She was shocked four times in eight minutes during the Oct. 7 incident. Muscatine County officials have said no laws were broken and jail policies were followed.

Franks, 58, suffers from bipolar disorder and was off her medication at the time. The records should show what medication she was given in jail. County officials have said Franks refused to take medication jail officials offered her.

Franks was initially jailed for repeatedly calling 911 but refusing to talk to dispatchers, but she was charged with assaulting an officer on Oct. 4 while she was in jail.

Franks has submitted two different notarized requests for the records since November.

Muscatine County Attorney Alan Ostergren has offered technical reasons for rejecting the records requests. He said the first request was flawed because it included the signature of Franks' father, Ken Beeding, and suggested he was acting as his daughter's legal representative. The second request was rejected because of an incorrect date.

"It's not for me to say what Ms. Franks' best interests are, but it is for me to say as a lawyer and as an officer of the court to make sure we're not just trampling on someone's rights here," Ostergren said.

Beeding said he's frustrated with the repeated denials of access to his daughter's records. He has cared for Franks for the past 25 years.

Text Only
AP Iowa
  • Northwest Iowa man dies in hay bale accident WESTFIELD, Iowa (AP) — A northwest Iowa man has died after being hit with a hay bale. The Le Mars Daily Sentinel reports ( ) 76-year-old Barry E. Knapp, of Westfield, died Tuesday while stacking hay bales. The Plymouth County She

    July 24, 2014

  • Hearing set for Iowan held as deaths case witness AKRON, Iowa (AP) — A detention hearing has been scheduled Aug. 4 for a 44-year-old man held as a material witness in the deaths of an elderly couple. The man has been held since he was taken into custody in La Crosse, Wisconsin, on July 10, the day a

    July 24, 2014

  • Five charged after eastern Iowa police chase SOLON, Iowa (AP) — A two-county police chase in eastern Iowa has ended in the backyard of a house in Solon. Deputies say two teenagers and three men from Cedar Rapids were taken into custody Wednesday night. They face a variety of charges. The five w

    July 24, 2014

  • 2012 fatal boat pilot offers insurance money DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A man facing lawsuits involving a jon boat crash that killed four people and injured six others on the Mississippi River in 2012 has agreed to hand over $300,000 from an insurance policy, but he wants a judge to absolve him of

    July 24, 2014

  • Spontaneous combustion causes Cedar Rapids fire CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — Cedar Rapids fire officials say a fire at a local bar was caused by spontaneous combustion of rags and towels containing animal fat. An early morning fire Wednesday at the Chrome Horse Saloon and Slop House damaged the first

    July 24, 2014

  • Fired Iowa editor claims religious discrimination NEWTON (AP) — The former editor of the Newton Daily News has filed a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claiming he was fired for expressing his religious beliefs.In the complaint filed Wednesday, Bob Eschliman claimed re

    July 24, 2014

  • Propane suppliers: buy ahead to avoid price spikes DUBUQUE, Iowa (AP) — State officials and propane suppliers are advising consumers to fill their tanks before cold weather arrives because prices could climb again this winter. The Dubuque Telegraph Herald reports ( ) prices will

    July 23, 2014

  • Woman convicted of murder in Des Moines stabbing DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A woman has been convicted of stabbing to death a 28-year-old man in Des Moines last year. The Des Moines Register says ( ) 22-year-old Miranda Rose Petithory Metcalf was found guilty of second-degree mu

    July 23, 2014

  • Sioux City escape returned to jail SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — A man missing from a Sioux City work release facility since July 12 is back in jail after he was located in a Sioux City apartment. The Sioux City Journal reports ( ) Dexter James-Lloyd No Ear was taken in

    July 23, 2014

  • Burlington City Council fails to censure member BURLINGTON, Iowa (AP) — An evenly divided Burlington City Council failed to pass a resolution censuring one of its own members for cursing and storming out of a meeting earlier this month. The Burlington Hawk Eye reports ( ) the

    July 23, 2014

AP National