Kokomo was ranked third in the U.S. for job growth in 2013 according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Kokomo added 2,300 jobs between August 2013, and August 2014, for a total job growth rate of 5.3 percent.

For the same period, Kokomo’s unemployment rate shrank by more than two percentage points, while its labor force increased by 1,817.

This report follows a U.S. Conference of Mayors announcement that Kokomo’s Gross Metropolitan Product (GMP) growth rate of 2.4 percent in 2013 placed it 61st of 363 metro areas in the nation.

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Detectives working from the Indiana State Police Peru Post are asking the public for information on a Miami County criminal investigation in which a 70 year-old Miami County man was found injured last week near a Miami County farm field.

Last Monday at approximately 10:00 a.m., 70 year old James Hoffman,was found with his hands and feet bound, severely injured, near a farm field adjacent to his residence at 6390 South Miami County Road 250 East. Hoffman appeared to have suffered numerous injuries to his body. He is currently at a Ft. Wayne hospital in critical but stable condition.

Detectives believe Hoffman was battered between 7:00 a.m. and 10:00 a.m., last Monday morning. Investigators have received information that the suspect in this crime is possibly a white, clean shaven man, who is approximately 5’8” and overweight. At the time of the attack, the suspect is believed to have worn a white shirt, blue jeans, black work boots, and a blond curly wig.

Officers are looking for a small brown mid 1980’s to mid 1990’s pickup truck. with a light colored aluminum topper and a loud exhaust.

Anyone with information about this case is asked to contact the Indiana State Police by calling 1-800-382-0689 (inside Indiana) or 1-765-473-6666.

Information can also be provided anonymously to Crime Stoppers by calling 1-888-852-3144. Information that leads to the arrest or indictment of a felony suspect could make the tipster eligible for a cash reward.
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Another serious accident last night at the Burlington Avenue Hoosier Heartland interchange left several people injured. Cass County Sheriff Randy Pryor says at least one person was flown to an Indianapolis hospital and several others were injured. Pryor says an eastbound pickup truck allegedly disregarded the stop sign, striking a northbound passenger car. Authorities have not yet released the names of those involved in the crash.

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The CCCF Community Stage Team has announced that the community stage will available for rent by other Cass County organizations in 2015.
The stage, purchased by a Cass County Community Foundation grant, is a 36ft. trailer which opens for a 14ft x 32ft stage floor, and is equipped with sound, lighting and other features. Cost to rent the mobile equipment includes transportation and set-up. The rental fee varies by the type of organization and number of days the stage is in use.

A completed rental agreement and deposit are due at the time of scheduling and must be submitted at least 60 days prior to the event. Some restrictions for use do apply and renters will be required to have appropriate insurance as well as hire a stage supervisor and technicians from an approved list. The stage is approved for use only in Cass County and scheduled on a “first come, first served” basis.
Qualified individuals who would like to be considered for training as supervisors or technicians must apply at the Logansport Parks Department and be able to pass a background check. For more information or to obtain rental agreements, contact Janet Fawley at the Logansport Parks Department.

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The Logansport Street Department plans to begin picking up leaves, weather-permitting, on Monday, Nov. 3. If you choose to rake leaves into piles for the leaf vac to pick up, the City of Logansport asks that you place loose leaves as close to the street as possible, but not IN the street. Do NOT rake leaves onto the catch basins. No loose leaves will be picked up in alleys. Do not mix limbs with leaves and do not place leaves in plastic bags.

Those who wish to bag their leaves may do so as long as they are placed in the brown paper biodegradable yard waste bags and placed at the normal trash pickup site. The biodegradable yard waste bags will still be picked up on your normal trash pickup day by the Street Department.
As a rule, brush piles WILL NOT be picked up during leaf pick up season.
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The Logansport Parks & Recreation Department, the Cass County Soil & Water Conservation District, and Boy Scout Troop 200 have partnered to plant trees at Riverside Park at 10 a.m. this Saturday, October 25th. Those interested in participating should meet near the basketball court.
Theevent is one of hundreds of re-greening efforts throughout the country being promoted during October, which has been declared National NeighborWoods® Month by the national nonprofit Alliance for Community Trees (ACTrees).
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A 9 month old boy from Kokomo was in critical condition last night following what appears to have been an accidental shooting. Howard County Sheriff Deputies responded to multiple 911 calls advising two people had been shot just before 5 p.m. yesterday. Upon arrival at an address on Fawn Drive, they discovered the homeowner, 31 year old, John W. Hambaugh III and his 9 month old son being treated for what appeared to be single gunshot wounds. After the shooting the child’s mother, Leah Martin moved the child to the front yard where she and neighbors rendered aid until medics and deputies arrived.

Witnesses state Mr. Hambaugh was seated in the kitchen area where he was preparing to clean his handgun. When he attempted to disassemble the gun, a round had inadvertently been left in the handgun. As he attempted to remove the slide, the bullet discharged, striking the inside of Hambaugh’s left thigh. It traveled through the thigh and after exiting, struck the child in the head. Evidence at the scene suggests the child was standing to the side of Mr. Hambaugh at the time of the shooting which police say is consistent with witness statements.

Both Hambaugh and his son were transported by ambulance to Community Howard Regional Hospital, Kokomo. Shortly after their arrival the child was airlifted to Riley Children’s Hospital, Indianapolis where he is listed in critical condition. Hambaugh was treated and is expected to be released soon.
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The BMV has released an informational video explaining the new Motor Driven Cycle (MDC) laws that begin on Jan. 1, 2015. It designed to inform Hoosiers how to register their scooters, mopeds and motorized bicycles and how to get a proper license to operate them on Indiana’s roads. The video is available on the Indiana BMV channel on Youtube.

“This video will inform Hoosiers how to register their MDCs and how to get a proper license to operate an MDC on Indiana’s roads,” Commissioner Snemis said. “The video will help all drivers stay safe and legal, and I encourage everyone to watch it.”

MDCs, commonly referred to as scooters, mopeds or motorized bicycles, are now divided into MDC-A or MDC-B classes. The video includes the following information:
MDC-A and MDC-B definitions
Where to identify MDC-A or MDC-B engine size
What is needed to lawfully operate an MDC-A and MDC-B
Documents to bring to a BMV branch in order to properly register an MDC
Endorsements needed to operate an MDC

Additionally, the video discusses what MDC-A and MDC-B plates will look like, along with some general laws and rules of the road while operating an MDC.

“It is our goal to educate Hoosiers with motor driven cycles and help them be prepared for a quick and easy trip to their local BMV branch once this new law goes into effect on January 1, 2015,” said Snemis.
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Logansport Police said in a news release issued yesterday that K9 Officer Mark VanHorn attempted to conduct a traffic stop on a vehicle without a license plate near the intersection of 21st and George Streets just before 7:00 AM on Tuesday. The vehicle, a red, 1986 Chevy Blazer took off at a high rate of speed and failed to yield. Police say the driver completely disregarded the stop sign at the intersection of 21st and Smead Street and began to flee for several minutes near the East end of town. The suspect vehicle was traveling at a high rate of speed through alleys and intersections near Tower Park.

The pursuit finally led officers to the area of Logansport High School. After the suspect vehicle made several attempts to lose officers through neighborhoods near the High School, he allegedly drove onto the High School property where officers were able to block intersections and set up a perimeter to contain the pursuit. At this time school corporation buses and students were beginning to arrive in the area. In order to terminate the pursuit in safe manner, a device was deployed to deflate the suspect’s tires, helping to control his speed and reduce the vehicles ability to flee from law enforcement.

The device was successfully deployed, disabling two tires on the suspect vehicle. Police say the driver then attempted to evade law enforcement by driving into the wooded area near the High School, and the vehicle became inoperable in a muddy area. A felony traffic stop was conducted and the suspect was taken into custody with no injuries to himself or officers. No patrol vehicles were damaged while conducting the pursuit. The Logansport Police Department says officers involved in the pursuit never exceeded 45MPH.

The suspect was identified as 19 year old Jacob Noel of Logansport, who was subsequently arrested on multiple charges including resisting law enforcement, reckless driving, criminal recklessness and possession of marijuana. Noel was also issued several uniform traffic tickets for multiple driving infractions.
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The Cass County Highway Department announces daytime closures on County Road 150 North between 600 East and 800 East, for pavement repair at the two s-curves in that road segment. The work will begin at the westernmost s-curve. Residents will have access to their properties from one direction or the other, but through traffic will not be permitted while work is being done between approximately 8 AM and 3 PM. Drivers using the road outside of those hours should be alert for loose stone and rough pavement at the work locations.

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