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Iowa News

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Cory Booker is not being subtle. With the Iowa caucuses still well over a year away, the New Jersey senator is working overtime to make an impression in Iowa and in other states crucial to the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination. Booker has secured the keynote speaker role at the marquee fall Democratic Party fundraising banquet in Des Moines on Oct. 6 and will headline a Democratic fundraiser later in October in South Carolina.

MANLY, Iowa (AP) – Authorities say an 80-year-old man has died in a grain bin accident in northern Iowa. KIMT-TV reports the Worth County Sheriff’s Office was called Monday morning to a possibly grain bin entrapment west of Manly. Deputies were joined by rescue crews from Manly, Kensett and Northwood as well as a helicopter ambulance from Fort Dodge. The bin was emptied and the man’s body was found. Authorities aren’t releasing his name until relatives can be notified.

WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) – The third trial in the 1990 killing of a 9-year-old girl has ended in a mistrial after jurors failed to reach a verdict after three days of deliberations. The Quad-City Times reports a judge Monday declared the mistrial in the trial of Stanley Liggins. He’d twice been convicted of murder in the killing of 9-year-old Jennifer Lewis, of Rock Island, Illinois. Liggins was twice convicted and sentenced to life in prison, but both convictions were overturned.

ALBIA, Iowa (AP) – A man is scheduled to start trial again Monday, a week after a mistrial was declared at his first murder trial. Patrick Thompson is accused of starting the May 15, 2017, fire that killed his 12-year-old stepsister and her 16-year-old cousin in Guthrie Center. The judge declared the mistrial after someone loudly discussed the case with prospective jurors. The trial had been moved to Decatur County because of pretrial publicity. The trial beginning Monday is being held in Monroe County.

Wisconsin News

SIREN, Wis. (AP) – The Wisconsin Department of Justice is investigating a retired county prosecutor over date requests he allegedly made to women who had cases in his county. KMSP-TV reports former Burnett County District Attorney William Norine reached out through Facebook to at least six women who were defendants in criminal cases. Norine retired in August after 10 years as DA. In a statement Monday, he said he has violated no ethical rule. The DOJ tells The Associated Press it is investigating.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – Republican U.S. Senate candidate Leah Vukmir says opponents to Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh are engaging in “last-minute character assassination.” Vukmir on Monday called for Democrats to “stop the political posturing and hold a vote this week on Judge Kavanaugh’s nomination.” Her comments came after Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin called for the FBI to reopen its background check of Kavanaugh in light of new allegations of sexual misconduct.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – A judge could decide during a secret hearing whether an alderwoman is in contempt of court for complaining about his decision to seal her open records lawsuit. Racine Alderwoman Sandy Weidner says City Attorney Scott Letteney last year asked the city’s Ethics Board to review emails Weidner sent to constituents, saying they contained confidential information.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) – The state Department of Natural Resources’ board is considering ending Wisconsin’s ruffed grouse season early to protect the population. DNR officials wrote in a memo that ruffed grouse drumming activity was down 34 percent statewide from 2017 to 2018.

Illinois News

CHICAGO (AP) – Defense attorneys will call more witnesses on Tuesday as the murder trial of Chicago police officer Jason Van Dyke resumes. A forensic pathologist who testified Monday for the defense criticized the official autopsy results. Shaku Teas’ testimony seemed to contradict what the video of the 2014 shooting of Laquan McDonald shows. The white officer shot the black teenager 16 times. Teas said she believes at least 12 of the 16 shots fired by Van Dyke hit McDonald before the teen was on the ground.

CHICAGO (AP) – A judge has vacated the convictions of 18 more men investigated by a corrupt Chicago police sergeant. Cook County State’s Attorney Kimberly Foxx apologized to the men and shook their hands after the judge approved the exonerations Monday. A total of 42 convictions linked to then-Sgt. Ronald Watts have been tossed since 2016. Watts and his crew of tactical officers allegedly shook down drug suspects and framed some people if they didn’t pay the officers.

CHICAGO (AP) – The Archdiocese of Chicago is closing one school and one church and merging parishes to help address financial issues and an expected priest shortage. The Chicago Tribune reports Divine Infant Jesus School in Westchester will close effective June 30. Our Lady of Loretto Parish in Hometown will merge with St. Germaine Parish and School in Oak Lawn.

SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (AP) – A temporary bridge used during reconstruction of Chicago’s Interstate 55 and Lake Shore Drive interchange has earned Illinois the year’s top national transportation award. The grand prize in the 2018 America’s Transportation Awards was announced Monday at the annual meeting of the American Association of State Highway Transportation Officials in Atlanta. The Illinois Department of Transportation devised a temporary bridge for I-55 traffic onto Lake Shore Drive to diminish delays.