Women sent by Iowa to juvenile home settle lawsuit

DES MOINES — The state of Iowa has agreed to settle a lawsuit filed by two women once held at a state-run juvenile home for nearly $700,000.

The Iowa State Appeal Board has agreed to the settlement which pays Laera Reed and Paige Ray-Cluney more than $170,000 each and their lawyers more than $340,000.

The women were held at the Iowa Juvenile Home at Toledo until former Gov. Terry Branstad ordered it closed in 2014 after allegation surfaced that some girls were held in seclusion cells.

Iowa then sent Reed and Ray-Cluney to the Copper Lake School for Girls in Wisconsin where they claim in court documents they were held in isolation cells and subjected to other treatment that led to suicide attempts.

Iowa taxpayers will pay the settlement from the state’s general fund.

Wisconsin officials in June agreed to pay $1.95 million apiece to Reed and Ray-Cluney to settle a lawsuit filed against the state for their treatment at the Copper Lake facility.

Man charged in slayings wants trial moved from Cedar Rapids

CEDAR RAPIDS — A man accused of fatally shooting two 18-year-olds in a vehicle in a business parking lot wants his trial moved out of Cedar Rapids.

Linn County District Court records say an Oct. 25 hearing is scheduled to hear the request from 26-year-old Andre Richardson. He’s pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder in the May 18 slayings of Matrell Johnson and Royal Abram. Police say two others also were hit by bullets in the parked vehicle at the Iowa Smoke Shop in Cedar Rapids.

Richardson’s lawyer says extensive media reports of the slayings and subsequent investigation have made it impossible for Richardson to get a fair trial before an impartial jury in Linn County.

Richardson’s trial is scheduled to begin May 4.

Iowa board approves payment for student suicide jury verdict

DES MOINES — A state panel that signs off on legal settlements for the state of Iowa has approved payment of $315,000 to the parents of an Iowa State University student who died by suicide in November 2015.

A jury in August found the state partially liable for the death of Dane Schussler.

The lawsuit alleged the state failed to provide adequate mental health services.

Schussler had received counseling at the university for anxiety and depression before he was found dead on railroad tracks in Ames.

The Iowa attorney general’s office recommended no appeal and payment of the jury verdict. It was approved by the Iowa State Appeal Board on Monday.

The Associated Press

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