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Good, Bad & The Ugly

March 8, 2012
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The good

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has named Des Moines Public Schools as a 2012 ENERGY STAR Partner of the Year for strategically managing and improving the energy efficiency of its entire building portfolio. Through its partnership with the ENERGY STAR program, Des Moines Public Schools has improved its energy performance, saved money and helped to protect the environment for future generations. “The school district’s commitment to manage our energy use in partnership with ENERGY STAR has paid big dividends for our schools and the entire community,” said Bill Good, chief operations officer for Des Moines Public Schools. “Making our buildings more energy efficient has saved us millions of dollars in resources at a critical time for education.” Forty-three public schools in Des Moines are currently ENERGY STAR-rated, with four additional schools being added to the list this spring.

The Polk County Board of Supervisors held a public open house last week for the newly renovated space at River Place West, 2309 Euclid Ave. The newly expanded 28,000 square-foot former strip mall was redesigned by Keffer/Overton Architects and reconstructed by Larson & Larson. This $4.2 million dollar renovated space is home to General Assistance, Community Services, Adult Services and Polk County Health Services. Polk County River Place is the former retail property that Polk County purchased in January 2006 with the intent to relocate various county functions from leased space and consolidate them into one county-owned facility to improve the delivery of services to the public. River Place is home to a total of 350 workers, 290 of which are county employees providing varied county functions.

The bad

Way to go, super mom. Ohio resident Shantel Parker, 35, was arrested last week after she injected her daughters with heroin before sending them off to school. According to police, an investigation began after witnesses at the school reported the girls appeared to be under the influence of drugs. Parker reportedly gave her 14- and 16-year-old daughters heroin and other illegal drugs more than 50 times in the past three or four months. Parker was arrested and charged with two counts of felonious assault, two counts of corrupting another with drugs and two counts of endangering children.

In the case of identity theft, sometimes being flat broke and having nothing to your name is a good thing — joke’s on them, right? But for most Iowans, identity theft is a devastating violation, and according to the Federal Trade Commission, it’s on the rise. The FTC has recently released its annual report on identity theft complaints. The report details local and state identity theft statistics and rankings and lists the top reported types of identity theft in the state of Iowa. According to the FTC, Iowa moved up two spots from last year in identity theft complaints — a 9 percent increase.

The ugly

Somebody needs to cut this guy’s hands off. Florida resident Miguel Angel Rivera Flores, 29, was arrested last week after he was caught masturbating on the beach. Reports say a witness called police after she had went to check on what she thought were animal or childlike noises she heard coming from the bushes. But instead of finding a wounded animal or a lost child, Flores popped out of the bushes and began masturbating in front of her. She gave a detailed description to officers, and they were able to arrest Flores as he tried to flee the area on a bike. Flores is also the suspect officers were looking for after witnesses reported seeing him masturbate near the women’s shower areas and behind an abandoned house near the beach days prior. He was charged with prowling, loitering, fraud-impersonation and using fictitious personal identification information.

Ooh, ooh that smell… Florida resident Adrian Baltierra, 51, was arrested last week after he approached a prostitute, who ended up being an undercover officer, and made an unusual request. According to police, officers were conducting a prostitution sting when Baltierra approached a female officer and started chatting with her. Baltierra told the undercover officer that he wanted to smell her, well, you know, and offered her $15 for a big sniff. Officers quickly took Baltierra into custody and charged him with solicitation of prostitution. CV



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