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Morten sentenced to 82 months in prison


Fri, Apr 9th, 2004
Posted in Features

Calling him a danger to public safety, Judge Robert Benson on Monday sentenced Trevor Lee Morten to 82 months in prison for the manslaughter death of Timothy Loeding.

Morten, 30, of rural Spring Valley, pled guilty to shooting Loeding on August 29, 2003 outside Morten’s home. Loeding was killed as he exited his truck after arriving at Morten’s residence. Morten maintained that he was removing firearms from a closet when one of the guns discharged hitting Loeding. As a convicted felon, it was illegal for Morten to possess firearms.

Benson sentenced Morten to the full 82 months called for in the sentencing guidelines, with no time off for good behavior. He also ordered Morten to make restitution of more than $7,000.

Three letters were read in court prior to sentencing. A letter from the Loeding family said that while there was no purpose (for the judge) to exceed the sentencing guidelines, they believed there needed to be a full accounting of Morten’s actions on that day.

Linda Romero, who has a son from a previous relationship with Loeding, said that Tim was her son Zach’s best friend.

“I was appalled and angered to find out who had killed Tim,” Romero wrote, referring to Morten as Loeding’s friend. “Maybe the punishment for him should be to never see his children again in his lifetime.”

A message from Loeding’s seven year old son Zach was also read: “I miss my dad. He took me riding and fishing. He loved me a lot.”

Morten’s attorney Ian Ritts asked the court to depart downward in its sentencing. Ritts recommended 58 months, as Morten’s previous felonies “were so old”, they shouldn’t be considered a part of Morten’s criminal history. He also argued for a reduced sentence so that Morten can pay restitution sooner.

“He was getting guns off the wall when his finger hit the trigger. Those are the facts,” Ritts told the court. “He cooperated with the investigation.”

Prosecutor Pat Oman asked the court to sentence Morten to 78 months, the middle range in the sentencing guidelines.

“There are no substantial and compelling reasons for a departure,” Oman told the court.

Court services, which conducted a pre-sentence investigation, recommended the court depart upward from the guidelines because of aggravating circumstances, .....
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Mausts seek settlement of Preston suit

Fri, Apr 9th, 2004
Posted in Features

The Fillmore County Journal has learned that Robert and Elaine Maust have offered to settle their suit against the city of Preston for $300,000 and inclusion of Heartland in the state JOBZ program.

The settlement offer was made ..... 
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Commissioners’ Report: Rural addressing and E911 moves forward

Fri, Apr 9th, 2004
Posted in Features

Jeff Cooper, Fillmore County Information Systems Director, presented costs and contract figures related to software and support staff required in the process of rural addressing and eventual implementation of the E911 system to the Fillmore County Bo ..... 
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Spring Valley man sponsors 4th annual Trout Day May 1

Fri, Apr 9th, 2004
Posted in Features

“I just love to fish!”

This love of fishing has led Jim Wernimont of Spring Valley to put on a non-profit Trout Day event at Forestville/Mystery Cave State Park the past three years. The event is intended to bring people togeth ..... 
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This old (new) house

Fri, Apr 9th, 2004
Posted in Features

“This is my old house with upgrades,” Roxie Tienter said, describing her new 2,800 square foot house in Forestville Township.

The house looks like it was built in the 1930s: a two story gothic house with a high pitched gable roo ..... 
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A View from The Potting Bench

Fri, Apr 9th, 2004
Posted in Features

This week our rhubarb patch started showing its first growth. The bits of curly red new leaves among the remains of last years plants bring a promise of tasty treats in the near future. I was tickled to notice that Rhubarb is currently a “trendy” foo ..... 
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Another View: Water problems at courthouse over stated

Fri, Apr 9th, 2004
Posted in Features

The local media reported on the March 9 Fillmore County Board meeting that dealt extensively with roof leaks on the courthouse project. It is my opinion that Hill Roofing of Austin, the contractor on the project, is being blamed for things it is not ..... 
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Snowshoe Thompson

Fri, Apr 2nd, 2004
Posted in Features

One of the benefits of doing genealogical research is discovering new family connections. Such was the case when my research led me to Snowshoe Thompson, a Norwegian emigrant who became a mail-carrying hero to the gold miners of the Sierra Nevada Mou ..... 
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Moose pleads guilty to attempted murder

Fri, Apr 2nd, 2004
Posted in Features

Richard Jeffers was inspecting a landscaping job in the Conway Subdivision of Chatfield last May 23 when a man walked out of the weeds carrying a gun.

After asking Jeffers what he was doing, the gunman told him, “Let’s get movin ..... 
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