Clay County Sheriff's Office Spencer Iowa

Two people face drug possession charges after warrant check, search in Spencer

Two people face charges after authorities found marijuana, methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia during a search of a Spencer residence Sunday night. The search followed a warrant check by a Clay County Sheriff’s Office deputy at 119 West 2nd Street on Juan Fernando Martinez Jr., 57, just before 7 p.m.

Martinez Jr. had an active Clay County warrant for driving with a denied, suspended, cancelled or revoked license, according to court records. He was taken into custody with help from the Spencer Police Department, a news release from the sheriff’s office states. While the investigation was taking place, Veronica Millison, 51, was found to be in possession of drug paraphernalia. She was placed under arrest.

Two Spencer police patrol cars

Arrest made after Dyno’s robbery

Authorities arrested a Florida man Tuesday night after he robbed and fled a south Spencer gas station. Jaime Salina Munoz (photo provided)

Spencer police in a press release stated Jaime Salina Munoz, 22, of Shalimar, Florida, robbed the Dynos Convenience Store at 1001 South Grand Ave. Officers responded at 10:18 p.m. to a call that reported the robbery. The call indicated a male suspect left the store in a white Chevrolet Malibu and then headed west. Clay County Sheriff’s deputies also responded.

Sign outside Southside Grill with two women dancing on poles and text: Vote yes to developing business

Southside Grill: A timeline of events

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Chris Burg’s plan to revive Southside Grill caused a stir in Spencer from the get-go. In September 2018, Burg, the owner of Southside Grill, shared with the Spencer Planning and Zoning Committee his plan to pivot what was then a traditional, American-style restaurant to what he called “a gentlemen’s steakhouse.” The establishment, he said, would have a limited menu and feature partially nude dancers. Some in the community were strongly opposed to Burg’s plans. Sensing the opposition, Burg put up a sign outside the business that read “Vote Yes Developing Business” and featured two female dancers.

Chris Burg, Southside Grill Gentlemen's Steakhouse owner

Investigation leads to Spencer business man’s arrest

Spencer police arrested Chris Burg, the owner of Southside Grill, Thursday afternoon on 25 charges, including 10 felony counts of fraudulent sales practices and 10 felony counts of sales tax evasion. In a press release, police stated Burg, 36, was arrested at 2:24 p.m. after a traffic stop in the 700 block of Grand Avenue. Police served Burg with an arrest warrant charging Burg with:- Seven counts of fraudulent sales practices over $10,000 (class C felonies)- Three counts of fraudulent sales practices under $10,000 (class D felonies)- 10 counts of sales tax evasion (class D felonies)- Four counts of sales tax violation – permit revoked (aggravated misdemeanors)- One count of ongoing criminal conduct (class B felony)

In addition to Southside Grill, Burg owns Liberty Lanes, a bowling alley in Spencer, and A+ Carpet and Tile Cleaners. Southside Grill, which bills itself as a gentlemen’s steakhouse, has been the focus of investigations into serving alcohol to minors. Officials also have said the establishment’s dancers have not properly covered their nipples as required by Iowa code.

Two Spencer police patrol cars

Woman arrested after eluding Spencer, Milford police in vehicle chase

An Iowa City woman faces multiple charges after leading Spencer and Milford police on a chase in a stolen vehicle shortly after midnight Friday. The Spencer Police Department stated Shana Mull, 32, was eventually arrested and charged with eluding, a class D felony; failure to obey a stop sign, speeding, driving left of center, no valid driver’s license, failure to yield to an emergency vehicle and criminal mischief. Sometime just after midnight, Spencer police tried to stop the vehicle Mull was driving in the 400 block of West Fourth Street for a moving violation, according to a news release from Spencer police. The vehicle did not stop and led Spencer police on a short chase that reached speeds over 90 mph. The vehicle left the road at the West Fourth Street and 355th Street intersection and drove through a corn field.

Clay County Sheriff's Office Spencer Iowa

Spencer man arrested for marijuana possession, traffic charges

A Spencer man was arrested for possession of marijuana and multiple traffic-related charges last week after a traffic stop. The Clay County Sheriff’s Office reported that the stop led to charges against Nayland Kilpatrick, 46, for no valid driver’s license, no insurance and marijuana possession. According to a news release, at about 3:44 p.m. August 21, a sheriff’s deputy stopped a vehicle near the West 12th Street and Grand Avenue intersection because its driver was not wearing a seat belt.

The deputy found during the stop that Kilpatrick did not have a valid driver’s license. A substance believed to be marijuana was reportedly discovered after further investigation, according to authorities. Kilpatrick was taken to the Clay County Jail and held on a $1,000 bond following his arrest.

Southside Grill building in Spencer

Hearing scheduled for Southside Grill liquor license status

A judge will hear arguments later this month that could determine whether Southside Grill retains its liquor license. The Spencer City Council denied Southside Grill’s liquor license renewal in June citing evidence from law enforcement that Southside Grill’s employees had served alcohol to minors and intoxicated individuals and that dancers there had exposed their nipples in violation of state code. At this month’s hearing, scheduled for August 28 via phone, an administrative law judge with the Administrative Hearings Division of the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals will issue a proposed decision on whether the license should be denied based on the city council’s reasons. Shortly after the council denied Southside Grill’s liquor license renewal, it was revealed that the establishment is involved in an investigation regarding a single-vehicle, double-fatality accident near Dickens in April. Authorities say surveillance footage shows the driver in the April accident, 19-year-old Alfonso Adrian Maldonado, was served alcohol at Southside Grill earlier that night before the accident.

Two Spencer police patrol cars

Knife displayed, threats made in domestic dispute

Spencer police arrested a man Tuesday evening following a domestic dispute in which he reportedly displayed a knife and threatened a woman. Police responded to the dispute at about 7:30 p.m. in the 300 block of East First Street. Following an investigation, police arrested Tyler Thompsen, 20, of Spencer. In a news release, police stated Thompsen had been involved in a verbal argument with a 20-year-old woman. The release stated that during the argument, Thompsen displayed a large kitchen knife and threatened the woman.

Two Spencer police patrol cars

Spencer PD K9 sniffs out drugs; arrest made

A Spencer police investigation Monday led to the arrest of a Spirit Lake woman for methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia possession. Police arrested 31-year-old Heather Ann Luehring after the Spencer Police Department K9 had alerted to the drugs during an investigation at the north Dyno’s gas station. In a news release, Spencer Police Chief Mark Warburton stated police were dispatched to the gas station in reference to a counterfeit bill investigation. The Spencer K9 was called to assist. The dog alerted to a narcotic odor coming from a vehicle, according to the release.

Clay County Sheriff's Office Spencer Iowa

Driver attempted to flee authorities, arrested for OWI

Clay County deputies arrested a Spencer man August 11 for OWI and other charges after he initially fled and was later found at his residence. The sheriff’s office reported a deputy was in the alley behind Pour Judgement on Grand Avenue in Spencer on a different call when a vehicle sped the wrong way down the alley. The deputy recognized the driver as Lemarr Vontae Kelly, 33. Kelly fled when the deputy tried to approach him, according to the report. Kelly was apprehended at his residence a while later.