Local Coverage

A pair of Jasper men were taken into custody over the weekend following separate battery incidents.

At 3:25 yesterday afternoon, Jasper Police were called to the Dubois apartments on the first reported battery incident. When they arrived, police found 21-year-old Jacob Courter and a pregnant teenage girl outside of Apartment 10.

According to Jasper Police, Courter pushed the girl to the ground during the course of the altercation. Officers also found drug paraphernalia on his person.

Courter was lodged in the Dubois County Security Center. He is facing criminal mischief, possession of paraphernalia, and domestic battery charges.

Then at 11 o’clock last night, JPD got a complaint about an altercation that had just happened in the 3300 block of Newton Street. Police also learned that the suspect (21-year-old John Kempf) had left on foot.

Once they arrived on scene, police located and detained Kempf. After further investigation, police say the altercation stemmed from a relationship ending over the weekend. Kempf and the daughter of the complaintant broke up earlier in the weekend and police say Kempf was asked not to return. When Kempf did return seeking to rekindle the relationship, another man was at the residence and the two fought.

Kempf was taken into custody and booked into the Dubois County Security Center. He is charged with battery causing bodily injury and disorderly conduct.

The complaintant complained of back and neck pain as a result of the struggle.

Congratulations goes out to Mike Jones with the Memorial Hospital Foundation.

During today’s annual Jasper Chamber of Commerce luncheon, Jones was honored with the 2014 President’s Community Excellence Award.

Jones, who serves as the executive director of the Foundation, says he was very surprised to win the award. He says helping other people and serving his community are things that he has always enjoyed doing:

Jones began his professional career as a teacher of speech and theatre in West Hartford, Connecticut. After 18 years of teaching, he returned to Jasper and worked as a financial planner for American Express’ IDS Financial Services prior to serving with the hospital foundation.

This year’s Chamber dinner featured Kimball International president and CEO Bob Schneider and Don Charron, the president and CEO for the newly independent Kimball Electronics as speakers. Recently retired Kimball International president and CEO James Thyen also spoke today.

Thyen, who had worked for Kimball since 1966, says there is one thing that he’ll remember most about his time:

Now this year was a successful year in all for the Jasper Chamber. Executive director Nancy Eckerle says there were 35 new members added and 15 ribbon cuttings for new businesses.

Today also marked a change in leadership for the Jasper Chamber. Sherill Lueken, who represents Kimball International, will now be president of the board of directors. She replaces outgoing president Jane Balsmeyer.

Efforts on Huntingburg’s Stellar Communities projects have changed direction just a bit.

Last night, the Huntingburg City Council heard more on the change from the city’s Stellar committee. The larger Stellar committee has now been divided into smaller subcommittees to focus on the specific projects. This plan comes following the large committee’s recent meeting with state officials on Stellar funding.

Huntingburg mayor Denny Spinner says the split was needed to make projects move as smoothly as possible:

Spinner says the subcommitees will be meeting later this month. He is hopeful that the conversations will lead to them coming back to the council next month. At that point, a more definitive timeline of how the Stellar projects would move forward.

Also last night, the council approved a slight change to the city’s tax abatement policy. Under that change, several standards are put in place to allow for underutilized or vacant properties to be eligible for 100 percent tax abatement. These would include the property being at least 40 years old with at least 20 thousand square feet of space.

Spinner says though full abatement would not be guaranteed, it sets a standard for the city:

Other restrictions would include at least 5 million dollars of investment in the property itself and the property having been vacant for at least 5 years.

Final approval for each case would be the decision of the council.

The Dubois County Emerging Leaders have announced their 2014 grant recipient.

The group held its live voting party last night at Hedinger Beverage in Jasper. Mentors 4 Youth was this year’s grant winner. The grant is for 5 thousand dollars.

Courtney Knies is the executive director for Mentors 4 Youth. She says the money will help to further the organization’s efforts.

Other finalists this year were A Kid’s Place, the Dubois County Humane Society, Tri-County YMCA, and Survivors of Suicide of Dubois County.

19 organizations in all entered their names for this year’s grant. There were 2 rounds of voting this year. The first round selected the finalists and the second round produced the winner.

Now its been a busy third year for the Emerging Leaders. Last night’s grant party capped off a year that saw several new members join the group. Brianne Hasenour was one of those new members. She says the opportunity to be part of the group was just too good to pass up. She says Emerging Leaders would be a great opportunity for anyone:

Several veteran members of the group are expressing their optimism for the group’s future. Judah DeLorenzo is one of those members. He says continued community engagement will be key to the future success of Emerging Leaders:

For more information about Emerging Leaders, you can go online to elgiving.org.

The Greater Downtown Jasper Business Association has now announced details of Santa Claus’ planned arrival in Jasper.

Santa will be in town the night before Thanksgiving on Wednesday November 26th. Kids will be able to visit with him at the special house that will be set up for him on the downtown Jasper square.

Folks will be able to gather along the downtown square to welcome Santa. Santa will be parading from the fire station to his house in a bright red fire truck.

Santa will be at the fire station from 5:45 to 6:15 pm on the 26th. At 6:15, Santa will board the fire truck for the parade. He’ll be joined by elves and members of the Messmer Family Band and Friends until the parade reaches the west side of the square. He will then be in the Christmas house until 8 pm. Each child will get 1 goodie bag from Santa.

Now children are being encouraged to dress like Christmas packages and walk along with the parade. The tree will be lit downtown by an elementary school contest winner and Jasper mayor Terry Seitz will give a special greeting.

Children and families are also being asked to bring canned foods on the 26th. All items will be donated to the Community Food Bank.

For more information, you can call the Jasper Chamber of Commerce at 482-6866.

An attempted theft from a vehicle led to a Huntingburg man’s arrest overnight.

At about 2 o’clock this morning, Huntingburg Police were called to the 600 block of North Washington Lance CamplinStreet after it was reported that someone had taken something out of a parked vehicle. The caller told police he confronted a man who was in his vehicle. Police say the man (31-year-old Lance Camplin) then got out of the vehicle and took off on foot.

After getting a detailed description of Camplin from the caller, police were able to catch up with him. Once they found him, police had the caller identify Camplin. Once Camplin was confirmed as the one being inside of the caller’s vehicle, police discovered that Camplin had taken several items out of the vehicle.

Camplin was taken into custody and lodged in the Dubois County Security Center. He is facing a Class B misdemeanor for unauthorized entry into a motor vehicle along with a Class A misdemeanor for attempted theft.

Dubois County Sheriff’s deputies also assisted.

2 people suffered injuries after their vehicle collided with a tree and a utility pole overnight.

At 10:55 last night, Dubois County Sheriff’s deputies were called to State Road 64 about 3/4 of a mile west of County Road 600 East on a reported one vehicle accident. Deputies say 50-year-old Kenneth Sturgeon of Eckerty was eastbound along State Road 64 near County Road 600 East when the front tires of his vehicle got off of the shoulder.

Sturgeon’s vehicle then went off of the roadway, down a rock embankment, and hit a tree and utility pole. The vehicle became wedged between the tree and pole after the hit.

Both Sturgeon and a passenger (Lance Sturgeon) were able to get out of the vehicle before deputies arrived. Both sustained minor injuries and refused EMS on scene. They were taken by personal vehicle to Memorial Hospital after the accident. Sturgeon’s vehicle was a total loss.

Indiana State Police and a St. Anthony First Responder also assisted.