Sibley Man Remains Behind Bars After Leading Minnesota Authorities On High Speed Chase In Stolen Car

Blue Earth, MN — A Sibley man remains behind bars after a high-speed chase in Minnesota’s Blue Earth County.

According to an article in the Faribault County Register, authorities apprehended 20-year-old Roberto Ayala of Sibley following a high-speed chase topping 100 mph within the city limits of Blue Earth on Thanksgiving Day.

The article says he was arrested after a short foot chase, after he crashed into a building.

Officers report the streets were very busy at the time and the chase got quite dangerous for a time.

Ayala made his first court appearance in Faribault County District Court last Monday.

The Faribault County Register reports Ayala was driving a stolen car. They say he faces three felonies of fleeing a peace officer in a motor vehicle, obstruction of legal process and receiving stolen property. All charges carry a maximum sentence of five years in prison and a $10,000 fine. Ayala also was charged with fleeing a peace officer by a means other than a motor vehicle and reckless or careless driving, both counts have a maximum penalty of 90 days in jail and a $1,000 fine.

His bail was set at $20,000, surety bond only. Ayala also is being held for Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials.


Sheldon Police Take Report Of Stolen Shotgun, Cover Two Accidents

Sheldon, Iowa — In the latest from Sheldon Police:

The Police Department says about 8 AM on Wednesday (11/28), they received the report of the theft of a gun from a basement of a home on 11th Street. The victim reported the gun to be a .410 Wards Western Field bolt-action shotgun, valued at about $50.


An Alton man’s SUV and a Sheldon man’s pickup were damaged in an accident on Wednesday (11/28) in Sheldon.

The Sheldon Police Department reports that about 4:45 PM, 56-year-old Richard Mulder of Alton was eastbound on Highway 18, in a 2006 Nissan SUV, just west of B Street in Sheldon. Twenty-one-year-old Spencer Tischer of Sheldon was also eastbound on 18 behind Mulder in a 1997 Dodge Dakota pickup.

The report says Mulder had to stop for stopped traffic in front of him, and Tischer rear-ended the Mulder SUV.

Mulder’s Nissan received $1500 damage. Tischer’s pickup received $3000 damage.

No injuries were reported.

Tischer was charged with failure to have control.


A parked car was damaged in an accident on Thursday (11/29) in Sheldon.

The Sheldon Police Department reports that about 10:45 AM, 36-year-old Neal Susie of Edgerton, Minnesota was westbound on Eighth Street in a 2012 International semi, and made a left turn into an alley. As he made the turn, the back right corner of the trailer and an arm below the trailer made contact with the driver’s side of a 2010 Toyota Camry, owned by Jill Dykstra. It scraped and gouged the back fender and two doors.

Damage to the Toyota was estimated at $4000. The truck was not damaged.

There were no injuries reported, and no charges were filed.


Iowa Deer Specialist Expects Deer Numbers To Be Similar To Last Year In NW Iowa; Down As A Whole Statewide

Rural Northwest Iowa — The first shotgun dear season of the year is December first through fifth in Iowa. Tom Litchfield, the Iowa Department of Natural Resources Deer Research Biologist says hunters in northwest Iowa should expect to find about the same number of deer as last year.

Statewide, however, shotgun deer season hunters should expect to see fewer deer. While that downturn is by design, they should still fill plenty of tags, during the December 1-5 first shotgun season or the December 8-16 second season.

While some counties in northwest Iowa don’t have enough deer, statewide, Litchfield says they have been working to decrease deer numbers since 2003. On a statewide basis, the herd is very close to objective; which would be the levels seen in the mid to late 1990s.

Somewhat of a ‘wild card’ this fall and winter will be the impact of Epizootic Hemorrhaging Disease (EHD) across much of the state. Nearly 3,000 reports of suspected EHD have been received; with concentrations in central and southwest counties and several more western counties through the Loess Hills. In all, 63 counties have at least one suspected case, says Litchfield.

Another disease that affects deer should not be confused with EHD. Litchfield says EHD may come on strong, kill a lot of deer, but will probably only last a season and then it’s usually over for a while. He says the last outbreak was in the 1990’s. Chronic Wasting Disease or CWD, on the other hand would kill dear 365 days a year for decades. He says in Colorado and Wyoming they have infection rates of up to 50 percent. But Iowa’s cases are contained, for now.

CWD changes proteins in the deer’s body and eventually causes death from microscopic holes in the deer’s brain.

Litchfield says he expects the deer harvest in northwest Iowa to be similar to last year in most counties, but on a statewide basis, he anticipates the harvest to be down at least 10 percent.

On a safety note, Litchfield says hunters should be sure to know what they’re shooting at, and what’s BEHIND what they’re shooting at, as often the slug goes right through the deer and could possibly strike something they’re not intending on shooting.


With a relatively short season (five or nine days), shotgun hunters often must adapt to the weather. Looking ahead to the next week, seasonal temperatures and a continued brown—not white—landscape lie ahead for hunters holding about 172,000 paid first season, paid second season and landowner tags.

One strategy that remains constant is hunting with the wind. Deer rely primarily on their noses, to warn of danger. Hunters should keep that in mind, especially as they set up drives.

Litchfield says that it is always good to set up drives so that as you move the deer, they don’t have a good opportunity to smell the blockers as they approach. Have them downwind from the deer. He says a lot of hunters drive the same block of ground in the same way every year. Paying attention to the wind may produce better results.

Hunters are Iowa’s primary deer management tool. It is a role they have carried out well in the last decade, with that emphasis to reduce deer numbers. That has been accomplished, primarily, through increased sale of county-specific antlerless tags.

The ‘all seasons’ harvest—including deer taken in the bow, muzzleloader, January, youth and handicapped seasons–reflects that downturn, with 121,407 deer reported by hunters in 2011-12. That compares to 211,451 in 2005-06; though harvest reporting techniques did change during that span.

Still, hunters may find more dead deer, as they fan out across the landscape.

“We know this EHD outbreak had at least significant localized impact; and that impact won’t be assessed until we go through the hunting season,” says Litchfield.

With the emphasis on downsizing the herd, Litchfield sees about 60 of Iowa’s 99 counties ‘at objective.’ Another 20 should reach it after this season. The remainder likely would fall into place after 2013-14. He is concerned, however, that the EHD outbreak could change that dynamic—lowering hunter harvest and post-season counts—for some counties.


AAA Asks EPA To Ban Sale Of E15 Fuel

Des Moines, Iowa — Triple-A is issuing a warning about one of the products many Iowa farmers are backing — a gasoline and ethanol blend with 15 percent ethanol and 85 percent gasoline, called E-15. Triple-A officials are saying sales of the fuel should be halted until it’s more thoroughly tested. The motor club is urging the federal E-P-A to stop allowing the 15-percent ethanol blend to be pumped, claiming it’s damaging millions of engines. Rose White, spokeswoman for Triple-A-Iowa, says consumers don’t realize how harmful the fuel may be.

(As above) “Five manufacturers are on record saying their warranties will not cover fuel-related claims caused by the use of E15,” White says. “Seven additional automakers have stated that the use of E15 may void warranty coverage.”

Only certain vehicles are made to use the fuel. Of some 240-millon vehicles on the road, roughly 12-million are considered “flex fuel” capable. Ethanol supporters say E-15 is safe for virtually all post-2001 vehicles, based on extensive government-sponsored testing. White says consumers need to be absolutely certain what type of fuel their vehicle can take.

(As above) “To help prevent any problems, we’re urging consumers to carefully read the fuel pump labels and know your auto manufacturer’s fuel recommendations before using any type of new fuel blend,” White says. “Fuel recommendations are listed in in your vehicle’s owner’s manual.”

Iowa is the nation’s number-one ethanol producer with more than 40 plants operating. About 95-percent of the gasoline sold in the U-S is up to ten-percent ethanol. The E-15 fuel contains five-percent more ethanol. After winning EPA approval several months ago, White says E-15 is still only sold in three Midwestern states.

(As above) “The new E-15 fuel was just released on the market and there are stations located in Kansas, Iowa and Nebraska,” White says.

There are 10 stations currently selling E-15 as a registered fuel but that number is expected to grow. Eight of those stations are in Kansas, with one each in Iowa and Nebraska. The lone Iowa station is in Marion. However, stations may also sell E15 as an alternative fuel, usable only in flexible fuel vehicles, and there are stations that are doing that as well.

The Iowa Renewable Fuels Association (IRFA) today responded to Triple-A’s statement. IRFA Executive Director Monte Shaw stated:

“As a soon-to-be ex-AAA member I am disappointed they agreed to be a tool for Big Oil. And that is the main point. If you dig below the surface of any of these attacks on the RFS or E-15 your shovel will come out covered in oil. The irony is that AAA is best known for reporting gas prices – prices that are, according to Iowa State University, a dollar lower due to E-10.”

E-10 of course is 10 percent ethanol, which is in wide use.

IRFA noted that both Ford and GM have recommend the use of E-15 in their new vehicles.


Sheldon High Dance Team Comes Back From State With First-Ever First Place For One Of Their Routines

Sheldon, Iowa — It’s a first for the Sheldon High School Dance Team. They received big honors at the state competition. Dance Team Coach Daphne Feekes tells us more.

She says one of their routines was very well received.

She says they also came back with a fifth place in their jazz routine.

Feekes says the girls have worked really hard for this.

Feekes says you can see the dance team in action next Friday night, December 7th, at the Sheldon home basketball game.


Counties That Want To Evaluate Confinement Facility Locations Must Act Soon

Des Moines, Iowa — Counties interested in evaluating proposed confinement facility locations must adopt and file a construction evaluation resolution, then submit the resolution to the DNR between Jan. 1 and 31.

About 87 counties pass a resolution each year, allowing the county to review the master matrix for totally roofed animal feeding operations that need a construction permit before building.

Gene Tinker, the DNR’s animal feeding operations coordinator says that this is an opportunity for counties to provide input to producers on site selection, and the type of structures and facility management being proposed. He says that county supervisors can review and comment on the master matrix that producers submit.

Producers in counties that file the resolutions must meet higher standards than other permitted sites. They must earn points on the master matrix by choosing a site and using practices that reduce effects on the environment and the community.

Counties that participate in the master matrix process may accompany the DNR on site visits to proposed locations. The county board of supervisors may also appeal the DNR’s preliminary approval of a permit to the Environmental Protection Commission.