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Des Moines, Iowa
Investigative Reporter — Des Moines Register

Investigative reporter at The Des Moines Register

An Iowa historian by default

desmoinesregister.com — Iowa resident David B. Jackson became a school historian by default. Jackson, a former Kansas resident, now lives at the site of the former Hickory Ridge School at Hinkletown, located about six miles east of North English in Iowa County.

Fewer schools, more miles: Iowa kids at greater risk?

desmoinesregister.com — On a frigid Tuesday morning last month en route to her high school, 17-year-old Aaliyah Scott's Ford Excursion skidded on ice, spun backward into a ditch and flipped lengthwise, landing on its hood. What she remembers most were the sounds of breaking glass and the screams of her sister and passenger, Vanessa, 16.

Iowa clerk embezzled $32,000, audit shows

desmoinesregister.com — A former Vining city clerk who admitted that she embezzled taxpayer money, improperly took or spent $32,243, a special audit released Wednesday shows. Nanci Parizek, the city's clerk since May of 2008, last year admitted to Tama County Sheriff officials that she illegally issued checks to herself using city money.

Illegally in the red: Iowa schools plead for leniency

desmoinesregister.com — Dozens of superintendents, board members and executives from Iowa's financially troubled schools went before a state committee last week in a gut-wrenching - and perhaps last-ditch - effort to save their districts. They outlined plans to fire teachers, close buildings, cut programs and launch early retirement incentives designed to rid the schools of their most experienced, albeit more highly compensated, staffers.

Records recovery: School documents return to public eye

desmoinesregister.com — A project at the University of Northern Iowa is helping to bring tens of thousands of the state's long forgotten or lost rural school history records back into the public domain. Want to review the attendance records of family ancestors? Frame grandma's 3rd-grade report card? See a teacher contract from the early 1900s?

State told to let ‘non-Muslim’ prisoners observe Ramadan

desmoinesregister.com — Two Iowa prisoners have won the right to participate in Muslim customs even though the state says they are not Muslims. Inmates Michael Williams-El and James Blair-Bey - both serving life sentences for first-degree murder - are members of the Moorish Science Temple of America and identify their faith as "Moorish Islam."

Suspected Taser whistleblower doesn’t get job back

desmoinesregister.com — A former Muscatine County jailer who said he was fired after his bosses suspected he was a whistleblower who alerted The Des Moines Register about his coworkers' tasing a mentally disabled woman has been denied his request to return to work. Officer Barry Major was fired in January of 2014 for what state records show was his Nov.

No speeding ticket? State again investigates its own

desmoinesregister.com — A fellow trooper pulled over an off-duty Iowa State Patrol captain for speeding while driving a van belonging to Special Olympics Iowa in November, but neither ticketed him nor generated an incident report involving the stop, a patrol spokesman acknowledged Monday.

Court: School merger doesn't invalidate contract

desmoinesregister.com — An Iowa Supreme Court ruling this month will have long-term consequences on how - or even if - some schools share services in the future, potentially increasing pressures for hundreds of already struggling districts, administrators involved in the legal battle said.

Mason unaware of coach, administrator's relationship, she says

desmoinesregister.com — As part of its investigation into field hockey coach Tracey Griesbaum, Iowa looked at whether her relationship with Jane Meyer, the university's senior women's athletics administrator, posed a professional conflict. The probe concluded the relationship was not prohibited. University President Sally Mason nonetheless told the Register she found it concerning and learned of it only recently.
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Feb 27, 2015

"The Iowa Farmer" has an interesting #LostSchools article. Ag economy influences communities iowafarmertoday.com/news/crop/arti…

Feb 12, 2015

RT @JenniFoodM: So. @RaccoonRiver is closing; am writing a story abt its story. Are you a rabid fan, a devoted regular? email me at jenmille@dmreg or DM me.

Feb 03, 2015

Are Iowa parks too dangerous? Sledding bans and now an ATV park closed for safety/liability concerns. #ialegis dmreg.co/1DyKu05

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