Page 1 article text (OCR)
Slick Bandits Get ^e,; Ve ; ;1 - of Ktatoey 4 - 1 -Vo 3 ' Io »a 50316 Million Dollar Haul NEW YORK (AP) - Police say a slick gang of bandits, who used a sleek black limousine to lull security guards and gain entrance to the elegant Hotel Pierre, may have made off with more than $1 million in cash and jewelry from 47 safe deposit boxes. Detectives said one man, whom they did not identify, had satisfied them that he had lost jewelry and money worth $800,000. Chief of Detectives Albert A. Seedman indicated that the early Sunday robbery might turn out to be the biggest hotel heist ever pulled here. The Pierre, one of the nation's most luxurious hotels, is located on Fifth Avenue at 61st Street, overlooking Central Park. About half of its units are cooperative apartments that sell for $200,000to$300,000. To keep out undesirables, the hotel locks its doors between 1 a.m. and 6:30 a.m. But a security guard is posted inside to admit guests. It was just after 4 a.m. Sunday when the sleek limousine pulled up to the 61st Street entrance. Two well-dressed men got out and carried their bags to the door. They told the guard they had a reservation. When he unlocked the door, they walked in and the startled guard saw they were carrying guns and one was wearing a rubber nose. Two other gang members apparently followed. The gang quickly rounded up 16 employes— including three guards, bell hops and others— and herded them into the executive offices. Using 14 sets of handcuffs and a supply of adhesive tape, they bound the captives and made them lie on the floor. While the rubber-nosed man stood guard, the other members of the gang went to the battery of safe deposit boxes behind the cashier's office and began forcing them open. Seedman said the men used a guest list to select the boxes but the hotel manager, J.V. Bennett, later denied this, saying the boxes were opened randomly. At one point a guest, Haelio Fragga, a lawyer from Rio de Janiero, telephoned the desk to find out why he could not get an elevator. A gunman donned an operator's jacket and went to the floor. But when he couldn't make the car go down, he dropped his disguise and took Fragga, his wife and his mother-in-law to the executive offices with the other captives. At 5:40 a.m., the gang packed its haul in the suitcases and left. A few minutes later, one of the captives got loose and called police. COLD AILY NEWS 104th YEAR; NO. 63 Estherville, Iowa, 51334, Monday, January 3, 1972 WEEK, 60c; COPY, 15c Our Winter Wonderland "If you'd look for beauty, don't look afar ... The most lasting beauty is right where you are." So wrote a poet.who may well have been, looking at this very scene. Enjoying the winter beauty "right where you are" at Ft. Defiance State Park is 15-year-old Ann Hood, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Jerry Hood, Estherville. (Daily News Photo by Chuck Ostheimer) Traffic Toll Includes Kin of City Resident Corn Boom Prompts Call BOONE, Iowa (AP) - The president of the National Corn Growers Association isn't happy with the corn growing boom and has called on the U.S. Secretary of Agriculture to apply strict acreage controls. Walter Goeppinger of Boone, the association president, said he has asked Earl Butz to activate the section of the 1970 Farm Act which allows him to apply strick acreage controls on corn and other feed grain production. Goeppinger said he expects American corn growers to repeat 1971's record yield performance in 1972. Some 5.5 billion bushels of corn was grown last year. In a letter to Butz, Goeppinger said, "In order to isolate the 900 million bushels of oversupply created by the past season's 5.5 billion bushel corn crop, you and President Nixon should be pushing for passage of the strategic grain reserve law, instead of holding fast to a negative position on it." Goeppinger argued that unless Butz "uses his present authority to limit the acreage planted to corn on each farm in 1972 to such percentage of the corn base as he determines necessary to bring production and consumption into balance, a repetion of the 1971 fiasco will result. "This drastic change must be made before program signup time later this month." Goeppinger asked Butz "to change his stance on acreage control, strategic grain reserve and the corn loan. "Foremost is the need for you to abandon the program of allowing farmers to plant all the corn they wish after idling their set-aside acres...to allow open-end corn production again in 1972 is to invite disaster." The association president also expressed a lack of enthusiasm over the federal government's purchase of corn for a strategic grain reserve. He said the corn purchased by the Commodity Credit Corp., is "a millstone around the neck of the corn market." The Boone farmer also challenged a statement he claims Butz made that raising the current corn loan level would destroy the United States' export program. He termed the remark "a ridiculous statement" and said that during the past year, U.S. farmers exported . more feed grains in total value and tonnage than in any year since 1966. He said it was during this booming year that corn prices raised 35 cents per bushel higher than they are now. In his letter, Goeppinger told Butz the corn loan rate should be increased by a substantial amount. "If price-sick corn agriculture is going to recover from its present condition, then we must have an increase in the corn loan level that will cause corn to sell somewhere around $1.30 (a bushel) nationally. "This would mean at least $1.25 for the average Illinois and Iowa farmer and more for others. It would be well below the average price received for corn one year ago. Medicare Deduction Takes $8 Increase Effective last Saturday, the deductible under the Medicare hospital insurance program Is $68, Clifford W. Swedlund, Fort Dodge social security district manager said today. Swedlund said this means the Medicare patient admitted to the hospital after Dec. 31 will be responsible for the first $68 of the hospital bill. The $8 increase in the deductible is the .result of a review of hospital costs. Under the Medicare law the deductible must be adjusted to keep the amount in line with the average cost of one day's stay in the hospital. Any Medicare patient admitted to a hospital on or before Dec. 31 will be responsible for the first $60 of his bill, the amount of the deductible through 1971. "Because of increase in hospital costs, "Swedlund said, "oth er increases in the amount patients pay under the Medicare hospital insurance program are required effective Jan. 1, 1972." For hospital stays of more than 60 days, the Medicare patient will pay $17 a day, instead of $15, for the 61st through the 90th day. For "lifetime reserve" days the patient will pay $34 instead of $30 for each day used. Anyone having questions or wishing information about Medicare and social security benefits is invited to telephone, write or call at the Fort Dodge Social Security office. The office is located in Room 212, Federal Building. The telephone number is (515) 576-5185. Persons on the Emmetsburg, Spencer, Estherville and Spirit Lake telephone exchanges may call toll free by asking the operator for Zenith 1410. The latest of five fatal traffic accidents in Iowa involved a Fort Dodge Transportation Lines bus that was headed out of Fort Dodge to Estherville last night. The victim was Edward Nolan, 50, Fort Dodge, who died when , his car collided nearly head-on i»Hdlth a bus operated by Edward ' wymer, 45, formerly of Estherville, now of Fort Dodge. The accident occurred on Iowa 7 in the Fort Dodge city limits. Reports said the auto had crossed the center line into the path of the bus. There were 16 persons aboard the bus and three were slightly injured. They were treated at a hospital and released. IN ANOTHER FATAL, Quenton Bonsall, 36, Grimes, a nephew of Mrs. Ulabelle Clabaugh of Estherville, was killed in a crash near Des Moines. Bonsall died when his truck crashed on an approach to an Interstate 35-80 bridge in Polk County. Police said the truck struck a guard, rail and veered across the approach to strike another rail. Mrs. Clabaugh said Bonsall was on his way home from work at the time. He is survived by his wife, Sondra, and Steven and Shelley. Ronald Dean, 26, died Sunday at a Waterloo hospital. Police said he jumped from a car driven on a Waterloo street Saturday night by his 25-year-old wife, Catherine. Police said the couple had been arguing. Investigators reported that Dean struck a parked car when he jumped. A determination of whether Dean's death would be counted in the holiday weekend toll was expected sometime Monday. An accident Sunday on Iowa 57 west of Dike killed Becky Sue Zangerle, 16, of Waterloo. Authorities said she was a passenger in a car driven by Allen Clausman, 17, of Waterloo, when it struck a bridge abutment. Clausman and another passenger, Richard Loomer, 19,. Waterloo, were seriously Injured and were admitted to Waterloo hospitals. Alberta Miller, 54, rural Carlisle, was killed Saturday afternoon when the car she drove collided with another vehicle on Iowa 5 near Carlisle. The driver and a passenger in the other car were injured. Authorities said Karl Hathaway, 61, New Hope, Minn., and his wife, Alice, 57, were admitted to a Des Moines hospital. THE LONG holiday weekend saw a number of accidents in Estherville, one of them involving personal injury. Greatest damage was in a single car accident investigated by sheriff's personnel at 6:10 p.m. Friday. Stanley Walter Johansen, Estherville, lost control of his auto on the park road hill about a half mile outside the city limits, clipped a couple of poles and inflicted about $800 damage to his 1966 Chevrolet. The accident report states that Johansen lost control of his vehicle on the slick road, went into the east ditch, hit a pole, returned to the road, hit another pole and ended up in the ditch again. The latest report from the city police concerned autos driven by Bruce Edward Henningsen and Juan Aguirre, both of Estherville. Augirre was ticketed after his car went around a corner from Sixth Ave. S. and struck the Henningsen's car which was stopped for a sign at 10th Street. Augirre then left the scene. The mishap occurred at 3:25 p.m. Sunday. At 4:20 p.m. Saturday cars driven by Charles Linton Clark and Janet Ann Olsen collided at the Intersection of 4th Ave. N. and 7th Street. Clark was going north on 7th and was hit by the Olsen car moving on 4th Ave. There was no damage to the Olsen 1970 Pontiac but the left rear of the Clark 1965 Chevrolet was damaged. A parked and unattended vehicle owned by Patrick Origer, Estherville, was struck on Seventh Street by a car driven by Robert Vernon Kuen, Estherville, who had turned into the street from Second Ave. S. Kuen was ticketed following the accident at 12:34 a.m. Saturday. At 3 p.m. Friday a 1961 Pontiac driven by Barbar Lague Ross, Estherville, was struck in the left rear as it was turning into the Holy Family Hospital parking lot. The other car, driven by Dennis Reinhold Firchau, Lewisville, Minn., was unable to stop, veered across the street and hit the Ross machine. Earlier the same day, at 9:48 aon., there was a fender bender when a car driven by George James Cochran, Fostoria, struck a car driven by Marcella Ann Beck, Estherville. The Beck car was stopped for a Central Ave. traffic light when it was hit in the rear. Mrs. Beck was hospitalized with neck and back injuries, but was released from the hospital Monday. A 4:30 p.m, Thursday accident involved Dennis Ray Leininger, Dolllver, and Drinda Kay Brandt, Estherville, at Central Ave. and 7th Street. Leininger was going west on Central when the Brandt car was backing from a parking stall. United States Hopes to Reverse its Trade Deficit WASHINGTON (AP) - The nation's balance of trade deficit increased by $227.2 million in November—the seven month this year that the figures showed the United States importing more goods than it exported. The deficit, however, was an improvement from the October figures. The balance of trade then showed the United States in red ink by $821.4 million—the worst monthly deficit in the nation's history. The United States now has imported $1.7 billion more merchandise than it exported in the 11 - month January - November period. Not since 1893 has the nation had a deficit in its trade figures. Last year the country had a surplus of $2.7 billion. The Nixon administration had predicted a sizable deficit in 1971 but hopes to turn it around in 1972 through the new monetary agreement by removal of trade barriers. The Census Bureau, which released the balance of trade figures today, said exports in November amounted to $3.16 billion while imports totalled $3.39 billion. Economy Depends on Agriculture By CAROL HIGGINS Daily News Staff Indications of a gradually expanding economy reported nationally are also seen locally by Estherville businessmen. Most of them sum it up as Richard Currell, vice-president of Emmet County Bank, did, saying "we expect another good year in 1972." As several point out, Emmet County has some industry but is essentially an agricultural community, and "if the farmers have a good year, it is reflected in the cash registers." Local contractors are not as optimistic about the building industry. Bruce Mitchell of Mitchell Construction Co. observes that while there has been some home building by rural and urban owners and also some government - financed units going up, "house construction has been down here the last few years. They are needing housing but not getting it," he says. CONSTRUCTION of larger buildings for public use is at low ebb across the state. Observers say less than 25 per cent of bond proposals for such buildings passed in the last year. Building permits issued at Estherville City Hall show plans for 22 new homes at a total cost of $373,500 for 1971. Over the past five years the permits for homes totaled: 1967 — 34 at $522,750; 1968 - 12 at $220,000; 1969-7 at $136,000; and 1970- 12 at $183,000. Totals for the year 1967 through 1970 for all building permits which were categorized as new homes, garages, remodeling or business are: 1967—$739,245; 1968 — $333,665; 1969 — $242,034; and 1970- $520,635. In 1971, permits were issued for buildings in those categories plus the Christian Church and Iowa Lakes Community College for a total of $1,754,573.01. Deducting the amounts for church and college buildings, the remainder is $770,911.01 which covered permits for new homes, garages, remodeling and business. This shows only a small increase over the amount plan ned for those purposes in 1967. BUSINESSMEN concerned with agriculture find the 1972 outlook for farmers good. Francis Shadle, president of the Iowa Trust and Savings Bank, says, "The dry summer scared us to death but generally speaking, our corn crop is good and the same goes for soybeans. Earmers are complaining of corn being cheap but it looks as though it will be a real good year to feed hogs at a profit." He adds that "though prices of feeder cattle are high, it still looks as though a good manager in the cattle feeding business would make money in 1972." His predictions for hog farmers is emphasized by Harald Petersen, agricultural representative of Iowa Trust and Savings Bank, who says, "The bright spot in the livestockpicture would be hogs, in which we anticipate quite an increase in profit." Frank Lown, Agricultural representative of Emmet County Bank, expects the price outlook next year for cattle and hogs to be at "as high or higher levels than in 1971. It appears that hog numbers will be down compared to last year and prices considerably above 1971. "I would expect fat cattle prices to be equal to or above 1971," he said, "yet profits likely will be lower due to higher prices that they have paid and are paying for feeder cattle." Concerning corn, Lown said, "Personally, I don't expect corn prices to greatly improve over present prices. We may see some small rise as we get into spring." JAMES BUELL, a cattle buyer for John Morrell and Co., predicts a good year for the cattle market. "With a new record corn crop and replacement cattle up approximately 25 per cent in Emmet County, we will have to be extremely careful in the mar ketings of fat cattle in 1972," he said. "Cattle feeders will move their cattle when ready, thereby keeping down the tonnage of beef. If this is done, I predict a very good year, par ticularly the first half." Robert Hammond, president of Golden Sun Feeds, Inc., also finds the outlook good for 1972. He anticipates that "we will see an increase in livestock numbers. We are pretty optimistic for 1972 as long as existing grain prices return a margin of profit for feeding livestock," he said. J. D. Webb of Webb Implement has observed a trend toward bigger machines for use on the farms, "Business has increased dollarwise over the last few years," he says, and he anticipates a further upward swing in farm implement buying, due to the investment credit relief given through taxes. The investment credit relief law, which had been in force several years ago, was recently put back into effect. It provides that 7 per cent of the purchase price of equipment and grain storage buildings which have been on order since April 1, 1971, or purchased after Aug. 15 is deductible from the tax payable. RETAIL business shows a normal increase for 1971, and businessmen expect 1972 to be better. "Rural trade has dropped in the last few years — not as many farmers," says Len Fick of Coast-to-Coast. "We have just enough industry that we don't ever get hurt too bad and we don't get a big surge in business. We go along at a slow, consistent pace." The outlook for women's wear is especially good, according to Bill Bennett of L. M. Christensen Co. Women's fashions have become more feminine and lengths are fairly well established, he finds and "women will be able to buy with more confidence this year." Concerning the holiday sales, he said, "Christmas buying started earlier and we didn't get that big crunch during the last week. People are buying more practical gifts this year than they have in years gone by. Home furnishings were especially good — towels, sheets, blankets and things of that type." Nationally, the government's list of economic indicators showed a slight gain during November but no sharp expansion as predicted by the Nixon administration. But a Commerce Department economist, Asst. Secretary Harold C. Passer, said the slight gain last month continues the increase in the indicators that has been under way for more than a year. "Thus, the leading indicators continue to point toward further economic expansion in the months ahead," Passer said. Of the eight indicators available in November, five were up and three were down, with the strongest gains recorded in the length of the average work week and new factory orders for durable goods. The increase brought the composite index of leading indicators to 128.5 per cent of the 1967 base year. The sharpest decline came in the indicator for housing permits, which dropped 9.7 per cent after a 14.4 per cent increase in October. Other indicators showing gains were those for initial claims for unemployment insurance, the price-labor cost ratio, and contracts and orders for plants and equipment. Besides building permits, indicators for industrial materials prices and stock prices dropped in November. Prices of common stocks actually dropped 4.6 per cent, according to the report, after a 2.1 per cent decline in October. The index of leading indicators has increased by more than 13 per cent in the last 12 months, Passer said. The index has recorded increases in 11 of the past 13 months. The slow advance in November, however, gave the Nixon administration little to boast about. The administration has predicted the economy will soon begin to move into a faster stage. Earlier, new balance of trade figures indicated the United States is virtually assured of its first trade deficit in almost' a century.