Argus-Leader from Sioux Falls, South Dakota on February 12, 1994 · Page 13
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Argus-Leader from Sioux Falls, South Dakota · Page 13

Sioux Falls, South Dakota
Issue Date:
Saturday, February 12, 1994
Page 13
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Argus Leader, Sioux Falls, South Dakota, Saturday, Feb. 12, 1994 HOW TO REACH US Local news inquiries and tips: Maricarrol Kueter, city editor, 331-2327 or Rosemary McCoy and Cindy Uken, assistant city editors, 331-2301 or 1-800-530 NEWS STATE NEWS OBITUARIES BIRTHS JUST CURIOUS ANSWERS TO YOUR QUESTIONS Opening prayer goes way back QUESTION: With emphasis on the separation of church and state, why does the Sioux Falls City Commission open its meeting with a prayer? ANSWER: "It's always been that way," Mayor Jack White said. "It's a tradition that goes way back beyond me. The invocation is multidenomina-tional, so there's no bias toward one religion or another. We're kind of like Congress and the state Legislature. They open with a prayer and we are just one of that group." Have a general news question? Call the Argus Leader any time at 331-2291 and leave a message. Or send your questions to Just Curious, Box 5034, Sioux Falls, SD 57117-5034. BRIEFLY Republicans hosting legislative forum The Republican Forum is hosting a special meeting today with state lawmakers from Minnehaha County. The event begins at noon in the Holiday Inn City Centre, 100 W. Eighth St. Sioux Falls area legislators also will be at a forum at 10 a.m. at Lincoln High School on South Cliff Avenue. Furnace fine threats are false, city says The city of Sioux Falls is warning consumers about furnace repairmen who are threatening city fines unless repairs are made. Several citizens have complained that repairmen uncovered problems in heating systems and warned that if they weren't repaired, the homeowner could face a $1,000 fine. Ron Bell of the city zoning office said Sioux Falls doesn't have a policy of fining homeowners for faulty furnaces that were installed improperly. Con artist pleads guilty to charges A man who police say duped Sioux Falls women by posing as a rock 'n' roll agent has pleaded guilty to sexual contact with a child and grand theft. . Rick Lee Rodgers, 29, also known as Rick Raddison and J.R. McNealy, entered his plea Thursday in Minnehaha County Circuit Court as part of a plea bargain that dropped half a dozen other charges. Man found guilty in insurance scam A former Sioux Falls insurance agent was convicted Friday of bilking senior citizens out of their nursing home insurance premiums. After a one-day court trial, Donald Eugene Ellison, 55, was found guilty by Circuit Judge Glen Severson on four counts of grand theft. Ellison was indicted on charges of diverting about $25,000 in insurance premiums. Severson ordered a presentence investigation. Democrats to serve chili supper tonight Minnehaha County Democrats will offer a chili and dessert supper from 5 to 8 p.m. today at the Labor Temple, 101 S. Fairfax Ave. Gubernatorial candidate Jim Beddow and state legislators from Minnehaha County districts will attend. Cost is $10 a person or $20 a family. Veterans presenting talent show today The fourth annual VA Talent Show will be at 2 p.m. today in the auditorium of the Royal C. Johnson Veterans Memorial Hospital in Sioux Falls. The show will include veterans from World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War, as well as employees and children. LOTTERIES MINNESOTA DAILY THREE: 7-9-2 GOPHER FIVE: No one claimed the jackpot Friday night. The winning numbers were 06-23-27-30-37. IOWA $100,000 CASH GAME: 1-17-20-23-32 r t t Says site would create parking problems By CORRINE OLSON Argus Leader Staff Commissioner Gary Hanson raised questions Friday about convention center parking that could mean a partial redesign of the site near the Arena. Hanson said that if a hotel is built on the northwest corner of the site, it will hurt the Arena's ability to host events because people will have too far to walk to the building. "If a hotel goes into that location, we have destroyed the ability of the Arena to operate," he said. "I don't think people will park at home and walk to the Arena." Architects from the Convention Center Design Group of Minneapolis, who designed the project, will be invited to meet with commissioners next week to see if changes can be made. Commissioner Bob Jamison, who oversees plans for the convention center and the Washington Pavilion of Arts of Science, said Hanson should have raised his concerns before the final design was approved. Commissioners voted 4-0 Wednesday to approve the plans. Hanson was gone that day to a meeting in Bloomington, Minn., concerning the Lewis & Clark Rural Water System. Hotels have been asked to submit proposals to build next to the convention center, but one has not been selected yet. That gives the commission a chance to avoid a potential problem, Hanson said. "There's no hotel on this rendering yet," Hanson said, pointing to a drawing of the convention center plan. Hanson said a better site for a hotel would be on the west side of the convention center, which will be southwest of the Arena. Mark Aspaas, whose Sioux Falls architectural firm is a part of the design group, said several different hotel sites were studied and the northwest one was deemed the best. "The city really wants to attract a first-rate hotel. They will frown on that site because of visibility," Aspaas said, referring to Hanson's suggestion. Building a hotel west of the convention center would mean taking valuable parking next to the center, he said. Aspaas said he understands Hanson's worries, but supports the proposal made for the site. Howard Wood Memorial Field West Russell St N IIX UrVest Bailey Stfe West Brookings St, YJ n i I Tl II I I , 511 1 Western Ave. rerouted Source: Sioux Falls Convent tonCivic Canter Concept Design Report and Archlecture Inc. -'g- Sioux Falls Baseball Stadium "I think it's a realistic concern, but when you think of it in terms of other convention centers around the nation, the fact remains we've got a much better situation than 90 percent of the convention centers," he said. The plans include 3,700 parking spaces, a number large enough to accommodate visitors even at mi Building a new life Sudanese refugees find hospitality in Sioux Falls By RANDY HASCALL Argus Leader Staff julu Ochala will be reunited with khis 19-year-old brother next month when Lutheran Social Services re settles 118 Sudanese in Sioux Falls. Ochala, 21 , spent most of his childhood in Sudan, lived nine years in Ethiopia and worked a year in Kenya as an interpreter. He came to Sioux Falls from Africa six months ago. . "This is a really, really good place. I've decided I'll stay in America," Ochala says from the tiny kitchen of a two-story house in central Sioux Falls that he rents with three other Sudanese refugees. "People are hospitable here. I've got more friends than I had back home." Two of those friends call in a 10-minute span Friday. He speaks his tribal Anyvak language with them and then sits back down to answer questions about himself. He switches to fluent English, a language he has studied since he was a child. "Ojulu means second born," he says. "I was second born in my family." He has worked two part-time jobs since settling in Sioux Falls and announces with pride that he'll start full time at Gateway 2000 next week. He hopes to save enough money to buy a car but says he needs to learn more about them first. In his native Sudan, a Christian-Muslim war rages. In America, his biggest concerns are rent and food. Ochala shares a bedroom with two of his roommates. Three mattresses are spaced evenly on the floor his is the middle one. They cook most of their own meals to cut expenses, but Ochala says he hopes to eat someday at one of the fast-food restaurants he's heard about. He talks favorably of South Dakota and its people. He's even convincing when he says he doesn't mind the winter cold, a dramatic change from African temperatures of 95 to 110 degrees. "Snow is something new to me," he says. "Before, I was suffering. Now I'm accustomed to it. Now, it's good." Ochala says life will be even better when his younger brother joins him. Charney Gonnerman of Lutheran Social Services says that will be in early or mid-March when the Refugee and Immigration Program resettles 118 relatives and friends of Sudanese now living in Sioux Falls. Refugees See 3B -- . " V-'.. .. . ' ; " .. ' - " - j .'-".1 - - I I t, I X ."! ' t V t K :": - ' Bill Haines Argus Leader Ojulu Ochala sits in a bedroom he shares with two other men in Sioux Falls. Originally from Sudan, Ochala has been in Sioux Falls for six months. Linda Smith Argus Leader times when the convention center, the Arena, Howard Wood Field and the baseball stadium are all hosting events, he said. Visitors might have to walk from a lot near Howard Wood to get to the Arena, but they sometimes have to walk several blocks to get to convention centers they visit in other cities, Aspaas said. Daschle expands his role Senator major player in health-care debate By DAVID KRANZ Argus Leader Staff South Dakota didn't vote for Bill Clinton for president and that can be justification for omitting a state from political favors. But Sen. Tom Daschle's commitment to sell the administration's health-care program has offset any perception by Clinton that there was bad judgment by the state's voters in 1992. Because of Daschle's role, first lady Hillary Rodham Clinton picked South Dakota to host the five-state Great Plains Health Summit on Friday. The forum in Lennox to gather input on legislation will include lawmakers and constituents from South Dakota, North Dakota, Iowa, Minnesota and Nebraska. Since Daschle was re-elected in 1992, there has been increasing evidence of a shift in his focus that makes him more of a national senator than a South Dakota senator. He has already practiced walking that tightrope and is convinced he can be both. When floodwaters ravaged South Dakota last summer, he put a coveted visit by the first lady to his office on hold and flew back here to assess the damage with Mike Espy, secretary of agriculture. Daschle bristles at reporters' questions that he might be losing touch with constituents, documenting appearances in the state that show his interest is as strong as it has ever been. While his changing role provides opportunity, Daschle accepts the fact that it also comes with political risk. The Lennox event is a plum to some people, a dog-and-pony show by other standards. ' Bonnie Williams, a Mitchell homemaker who is active in volunteering for health organizations, supports Daschle's shift "Any time you want to be creative, be successful, you take Daschle See 4B Investigation of Lake Andes deaths yields few clues By CARSON WALKER Argus Leader Staff LAKE ANDES Eleven months after the bodies of a young Lake Andes couple were found in a ditch east of town, the mystery of their deaths remains unsolved, despite a $5,000 reward for clues. Ruby Ann Bruguier, 19, and Arnold Archambeau, 20, disappeared Dec. 12, 1992, after Archam-beau's car rolled into a ditch. They were last seen walking away from the accident by a woman who was in the car with them. Law enforcement officials, family members and volunteers searched the area for days. They never found the bodies, so the couple was reported missing. Then on March 10, 1993, a passer-by found Bruguier's body within 75 feet of the accident site. Archambeau's body was found a t Ian i i i am -i i hmJ mmmeaatmtmmmmmmmm Ruby Ann Bruguier Arnold Archambeau day later, after authorities drained water from the ditch. Officers say they're working on the case nearly every day, but what happened still baffles them, family members and residents of this community of 846, about 120 miles southwest of Sioux Falls. By now the case has turned into the kind of mystery that a television producer could find intriguing. Sharon Wichner, a Sioux Falls woman who is Bruguier's cousin, said she has submitted the story to NBC's "Unsolved Mysteries" and should know by the end of the month if the show plans to cover it Despite the bizarre circumstances, officials are not treating the case as a murder investigation. "I'm not pursuing it as any kind of foul play. All I'm going to do is find out what happened to Arnold and Ruby so the families can have satisfaction," said Deputy Bill Youngstrom of Charles Mix County. "I can't say I'm going to go out and make an arrest tomorrow. All I'm saying is I can't rule it out yet." The following is what he does know and can release: The couple died of exposure, but they did not die in the ditch. Autopsies did not conclude the time of death for either person. Polygraph tests show that several people saw Bruguier and Archambeau alive after they were reported missing. A second autopsy done in Albuquerque, N.M., using photographs, reports and other facts related to the investigation but not the bodies revealed additional evidence to investigate. Dr. Brad Randall, Minnehaha County's coroner, conducted the initial autopsies on the bodies when they were found. Youngstrom said he could not elaborate on what new evidence was found in the the New Mexico autopsy. The investigation has been confined to South Dakota, but Youngstrom went to Nebraska to talk to former Lake Andes residents. To aid search A $5,000 reward is being offered for information that leads to solving the case of Arnold Archambeau and Ruby Ann Bruguier. Callers do not have to give their names. If you have information, call Deputy Bill Youngstrom at 487-7625 or Officer Dennis Simmons at 384-5691. Archambeau's aunt, Karen Turtle of Lake Andes, said she's tired of waiting but hopes the case will be resolved. "All I know is something terrible happened to him and we can't find out who did it," she said. "Hopefully it will be in the near future."

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