DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Senate has passed a bill that would change how judges are chosen to give politicians greater control and minimize the influence of attorneys.
The Iowa Supreme Court on Friday upheld a lower court's ruling that the state cannot deny two transgender women Medicaid coverage for sex reassignment surgery.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court restored a Des Moines vicious dog ordinance on Friday that an appeals court had found to be unconstitutionally vague.
Reynolds names appeals court judge McDonald to Supreme Court
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa Court of Appeals judge has been named by Gov. Kim Reynolds as the newest justice on the Iowa Supreme Court.
Judge Christopher McDonald said Wednesday he will...
Iowa attorney in overbilling case has law license suspended
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — One of four attorneys convicted of overbilling the state of Iowa while serving as lawyers for the indigent has had his law license suspended for at least a year.
Bill would give politicians more control over picking judges
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A bill that would dramatically change the way Iowa selects judges for the Iowa Supreme Court and the district court level has been introduced in the Iowa House.
The bill would end appointments by attorneys to judicial nominating commissions and gives the power solely to the governor and legislative leaders.
City loses appeal of electrical damage caused by squirrel
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court says an insurance company doesn't have to pay for damages after a squirrel climbed onto an electrical transformer and triggered a high-voltage spark that damaged a city's power substation.
The court ruled Friday that the city of West Liberty held an insurance policy from EMC Insurance that excluded damage caused by electrical arcs that aren't related to lightning.
Iowa Republicans seek to weaken courts on abortion questions
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — More than half of the Republican-dominated Iowa Senate has quickly signed on to a constitutional amendment aimed at weakening the state court system's power to review abortion restrictions, just days after an Iowa judge overturned what would have been the nation's broadest such limit.
License of Iowa lawyer who stole underwear suspended
MARSHALLTOWN, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa law license of a former Marshalltown prosecutor who stole a co-worker's underwear has been suspended.
The Iowa Supreme Court ordered the license of Benjamin Stansberry suspended indefinitely, for at least one year.
Iowa Supreme Court contender was sued over unjustified case
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — An eastern Iowa county agreed to pay $50,000 to settle a civil rights lawsuit against its top prosecutor last month, days before he applied for a seat on the Iowa Supreme Court.
The payment settled a lawsuit that alleged Muscatine County Attorney Alan Ostergren abused his power during his unsuccessful two-year prosecution of former West Liberty city manager Chris Ward. Ostergen pursued misconduct and fraud charges against Ward that courts later ruled were unjustified.
Judge declares Iowa fetal heartbeat law unconstitutional
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A state judge on Tuesday struck down Iowa's restrictive "fetal heartbeat" abortion law, which would have been the most restrictive anti-abortion law in the nation.
Judge Michael Huppert found the law unconstitutional, concluding that the Iowa Supreme Court's earlier decisions that affirm a woman's fundamental right to an abortion would include the new law passed last year
Chief justice seeks budget increase for court technology
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The head of the Iowa court system says technology and the need to ensure justice for everyone demands increased spending.
Speaking Wednesday in his annual speech to the Legislature, Iowa Supreme Court Chief Justice Mark Cady told lawmakers "we simply can no longer proceed into the future thinking it will be a modest linear extension from where we are today."
Iowa judge selection panel to choose Supreme Court nominee
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa court officials say current members of a state commission that recommends appointees for the Iowa Supreme Court to the governor can remain until July.
That means three members of the commission will not have to leave on Jan. 1 as a Republican attorney had claimed and can participate in choosing nominees for a current court vacancy.
Judge considers motion to toss Iowa fetal heartbeat law
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A judge said Friday it will take up to 60 days to consider whether to declare Iowa's fetal heartbeat law unconstitutional or allow a legal challenge filed by abortion providers to proceed to trial.
A decision to strike down the law before trial would likely be appealed to the Iowa Supreme Court.
GOP lawyer seeks to remove 3 from Iowa court selection panel
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — A well-connected Republican attorney has launched an effort to remove three members from the judicial nominating commission that will recommend finalists for key vacancies on the Iowa Supreme Court and Court of Appeals.
Iowa Supreme Court justice battling cancer to resign
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Supreme Court Justice Daryl Hecht, who has been receiving treatment for skin cancer, will resign from the high court.
The court made the announcement in a news release Friday. Hecht's resignation is effective Dec. 13.
Wind tower developers lose another round in court
FAIRBANK, Iowa (AP) — Developers of three northeast Iowa wind turbine towers have lost another round in their battle to keep them up or rebuild them.
Court: IDOT officers limited to commercial vehicle offenses
Iowa Department of Transportation officers overstepped their authority in arresting or issuing speeding tickets to drivers outside of the regulation of commercial vehicles, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled Friday.
The ruling could have implications in a pending class-action lawsuit that seeks to recoup the fines and legal fees of thousands of motorists ticketed by Iowa carrier enforcement officers in recent years.
Iowa justice declines action on disputed judge appointment
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The chief justice of the Iowa Supreme Court says a disputed appointment of a district court judge by Gov. Kim Reynolds in June will stand unless the courts determine otherwise.
Justice Mark Cady says in a statement released Wednesday he has no constitutional authority to confirm or ratify the governor's appointment of Judge Jason Besler.
The Iowa Constitution requires the governor to appoint a judge within 30 days of being presented a list of finalists.
Groups ask Iowa judge to rule against heartbeat abortion law
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Lawyers for two abortion providers have asked an Iowa judge to forgo a trial and rule that the state's fetal heartbeat law is unconstitutional.
Iowa high court hears arguments in police stop case
The Iowa Supreme Court will determine whether the police practice of using minor infractions as a pretext for stopping drivers they suspect of more serious crimes violates the Iowa Constitution in a case civil liberty groups say has major implications for police racial profiling.
Iowa attorney accused of theft from estate disbarred
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court has disbarred a northeast Iowa attorney accused of looting a woman's estate.
Landowners oppose oil pipeline before Iowa Supreme Court
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A group of Iowa landowners and an environmental group asked the Iowa Supreme Court Wednesday to declare a crude oil pipeline permit illegal under the Iowa Constitution, a decision that could force the pipeline in operation for more than a year to be turned off.
Ailing Iowa Supreme Court justice to resume hearing cases
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Supreme Court Justice Daryl Hecht says he will resume hearing cases and participating in decisions as he continues treatment for skin cancer.
The high court announced Hecht's decision Wednesday in a news release. Hecht revealed in April that had been diagnosed with melanoma, considered the most serious type of skin cancer. Hecht has been treated in Sioux City and Rochester, Minnesota.
Iowa Supreme Court halts absentee issues in voter ID law
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa election officials were told Friday by the state Supreme Court they cannot implement several absentee voting requirements in a new voter ID law until a challenge to the law can be heard at a trial.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Des Moines officials say nearly 8,000 tickets have been issued to speeders in the first month of renewed operation of an Interstate 235 traffic camera.
The Des Moines Register reports that the camera monitors eastbound lanes near Waveland Golf Course and was turned back on June 25.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Latest on a judge approving an injunction on parts of Iowa's voter ID law (all times local):
Iowa Secretary of State Paul Pate says he will challenge a temporary injunction placed on parts of the state's new voter ID law.
Pate says in a statement released Wednesday night that he's "disappointed" in the decision by Polk County Judge Karen Romano. Pate says he'll appeal it to the Iowa Supreme Court.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court has rejected a request from the developers of three wind turbines in northeast Iowa to review a district judge's order that the turbines be removed by Dec. 9.
KEOSAUQUA, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa prosecutor who faced sexual harassment allegations that the state Supreme Court described as "egregious conduct" announced Tuesday he intends to resume his duties weeks after the all-male court ordered him reinstated.
Abraham Watkins apologized for his past conduct during a news conference at the law office in his home in Keosauqua, a town in southeast Iowa with a population of about 900. He said he intends to resume public service in the coming days.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa woman is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to consider striking down surrogacy contracts as a violation of the constitutional rights of mothers and their babies.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court on Friday struck down a law requiring a 72-hour waiting period for women seeking an abortion, ruling that the restriction was unconstitutional and that "autonomy and dominion over one's body go to the very heart of what it means to be free."
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Despite acknowledging a county prosecutor's behavior was "morally reprehensible" and "egregious," the Iowa Supreme Court ruled Friday that he should be reinstated, saying his actions didn't reach the threshold to remove an elected official.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Latest on the Iowa Supreme Court ruling an abortion waiting period violates the state constitution (all times local):
The president of a national abortion-rights organization says the Iowa Supreme Court acted "absolutely appropriately" in striking down a 72-hour waiting period for women seeking an abortion.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A commission will meet July 9 to evaluate 22 applications to fill a vacancy on the Iowa Supreme Court.
The nominating commission will select three finalists to replace Justice Bruce Zager, who will retire Sept. 3.
Gov. Kim Reynolds will have 30 days to make an appointment from among those finalists.
MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) — A Charles City man twice convicted of sexually abusing a 17-year-old boy has been sentenced.
Court records say 62-year-old Doug Lindaman was given two years Friday. He'd been convicted in April of misdemeanor assault with intent to commit sexual abuse. He's said he intends to appeal.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Three southeast Iowa families who say the stench from two hog farms made it difficult for them to emerge from their homes won't get immediate help from the Iowa Supreme Court, which Friday reversed a lower court decision that found a law protecting producers was unconstitutional.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Des Moines plans to resume ticketing Monday of speeding violators caught by an automated speed radar camera on a heavily traveled portion of Interstate 235.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A recent Iowa Supreme Court decision involving a 2013 car accident on a northwest Iowa county road could make it more difficult for citizens to hold city, county and state officials responsible when people are hurt as the result of unsafe road conditions.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Two former Iowa Workforce Development judges may sue the agency for wrongful discharge after the Iowa Supreme Court made significant rulings in their cases Friday that could have broad implications for other state workers.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court ruled Friday that an all-male church board's characterization of female congregants who were pressured into sex with the pastor as sinning "adulteresses" who gave into "temptation" was constitutionally protected religious speech.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A former Deere & Co. factory manager cannot sue the company under the Iowa Civil Rights Act because he worked and lived in China when he was disciplined for having sexual relationships with two Chinese woman also employed by the company, the Iowa Supreme Court said Friday.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Iowa Supreme Court upheld the felony conviction Friday of a man who tricked a woman into having sex with him by convincing her through social media that he was an old high school friend.
Michael Kelso-Christy, 23, had argued that Iowa law doesn't outlaw sex by fraud or deception, but he was eventually convicted of burglary, a charge that also can include entering a home with intent to commit sexual abuse.
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa Supreme Court Justice Bruce Zager has announced his plans to retire later this year.
Zager has served on the state's high court since 2011, when he was appointed by then-Gov. Terry Branstad. Zager was one of three appointments made to fill vacancies created when three other justices were voted off the bench for their role in a unanimous 2009 decision that legalized same-sex marriage in Iowa.
FAIRBANK, Iowa (AP) — The state Supreme Court has declined to hear an appeal from an energy company ordered to remove three wind turbines in northeast Iowa, handing another victory to a group of local residents fighting the project.
Iowa Supreme Court justice being treated for skin cancer
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa Supreme Court justice is being treated for a form of skin cancer.
A court spokesman said Monday that Justice Daryl Hecht has been diagnosed with melanoma, considered the most serious type of skin cancer. Hecht has been treated in Sioux City and Rochester, Minnesota.
The spokesman says Hecht will participate in the court's decisions as his treatment allows.
The Iowa Department of Transportation does not currently have the authority to order cities to remove automated traffic-enforcement cameras from highways and interstates, the Iowa Supreme Court ruled Friday.
The state high court's 6-0 decision reversed a state judge's ruling last April that found the department did have that authority. Justice Daryl Hecht did not participate in the opinion.
HARLAN, Iowa (AP) — Former Iowa Supreme Court Justice Jerry Larson has died at age 81.
The Pauley Jones Funeral Home says Larson died Wednesday morning at a Harlan hospital.
A state news release says Larson served 1978 to 2008, longer than any other justice in the history of Iowa's highest court.
Man accused of molesting teen convicted a third time
MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) — A Charles City man accused of molesting a 17-year-old boy has been convicted again.
On Wednesday a jury in Mason City convicted 62-year-old Doug Lindaman of misdemeanor assault with intent to commit sexual abuse. He had been charged with felony sexual abuse. His sentencing is set for May 11. The trial had been moved to Cerro Gordo County from Floyd County because of pretrial publicity.