arrested for faking disease, collecting donations"
A Switzerland County woman was arrested
after allegedly faking cancer and soliciting donations.
According to the Indiana State Police, on Friday, September 30
ISP Detectives arrested Santana M. Banta of Patriot on charges
related to Banta faking an illness and soliciting donations to
cover her medical bills.
The investigation began at the beginning of September when a
concerned citizen contacted the Indiana State Police. The citizen
made a complaint that Banta had made numerous claims on social
media that she was suffering from terminal cancer. Banta claimed
that she was being treated for her illness at the James Graham
Brown Cancer Center in Louisville. Banta also started a GoFundMe
Account to allegedly pay for her medical bills. The investigation
determined she accepted in excess of $3,000 through that account.
The detectives soon determined that Banta did not have cancer
and was scamming people out of money, then using the money for
At the conclusion of the investigation, the case was turned over
to the Switzerland County Prosecutor’s Office for review.
A warrant was then issued for Banta’s arrest. She was arrested
on Friday without incident on charges for Level 6 Felony Theft
and Class A Misdemeanor Deception. Banta was incarcerated at
the Switzerland County Jail.
of Public Works reviews contracts, street closings"
The Madison Board of Public
Works and Safety met for their first meeting of the month Monday
City Utilities Director Brian Jackson presented a change order
for work on the
city’s Water Pollution Control Facility. The change order, valued at $20,298,
will address issues discovered during construction such as repairing water leaks,
reconnecting electrical wiring, and additional paving work among other changes.
Jackson also presented a new contract with Stantec Consulting Services for
the city. Jackson said the contract, valued at $35,000, covers consulting services
for several projects, design work, and assistance with the city’s
annual storm water reports to the Indiana Department of Environmental Management.
Jackson and Mayor Damon Welch said the city has had a good relationship with
Stantec. Both the contract and change order were approved.
In other meeting news, Building Inspector Mark Johnson reported that Planet Fitness
in the process of converting the former Staples building into a gym, and have
filed paperwork pertaining to this work. Johnson also presented an extension
request for a PACE project regarding the Scott Building, located on the 300 block
of West Main Street. Work on the proposed project was delayed due to rain, so
a one-year extension was requested to complete the work. The board approved the
Two street closings were approved for upcoming Halloween events. Trinity United
Methodist Church will be closing Broadway Street between Main and Third streets
for their annual Halloween Party October 30. The Lanier Mansion will have Vine
Street closed near the Visitors Center October 22 for their Spooky Mansion event.
The Madison Board of Public Works and Safety will next meet October 17.
will get inmates into manufacturing programs"
A new partnership launched by Ivy Tech Madison
will help prepare incarcerated women for advanced manufacturing
According to a release from the community college, Ivy Tech has
received a grant of more than $42,000 to provide incarcerated women
at the Madison Correctional Facility with an opportunity to earn
college credit, valuable technical skills and credentials for high-demand,
well-paying careers in advanced manufacturing upon their release.
The Carl D. Perkins Career and Technical Education grant was awarded
to Ivy Tech Madison by the Indiana Department of Education to expand
the pathways for postsecondary education available to incarcerated
women at the Madison Correctional Facility. The grant was one of
four competitive Perkins grants awarded to Ivy Tech statewide with
a totaled combined value of $302,000.
Ivy Tech has partnered with the facility and River Valley Resources’ Clearinghouse
since November 2015 to deliver a collaborative transitions course
for women within 60 days of their release. More than 200 students
have been served with a completion rate of over 98 percent.
awarded for Hargan-Matthews Park project"
An area non-profit park project is receiving
a grant from a regional charity.
The Friends of Hargan-Matthews Park, the volunteer organization
dedicated to improving the downtown riverfront park, was awarded
a $5,000 grant from Ronald McDonald House Charities of Kentuckiana.
Ronald McDonald House is a non-profit that serves families of Kentucky and Southern
Indiana whose children are receiving medical attention in the area. According
to their website, they have served over 25,000 families by providing private
guest rooms, meals, laundry facilities, books, movies and other recreational
opportunities. They also aid other organizations who support children. The organization
will be sponsoring the wheel chair swing and the swing set at the park with their
In addition to the grant provided by Ronald McDonald House, two local McDonald’s
restaurants have pledged their support of the project and will be hosting the
Friends of Hargan-Matthews Park for fundraising nights at both the Hanover and
Madison McDonald’s locations. The in-restaurant events will be held from
4 to 8 p.m. on Thursday, October 27th, and Thursday, November 17th.
The Friends of Hargan-Matthews Park, which operates under the umbrella of Madison
Youth Unlimited, was formed with the goal of upgrading the park to include riverboat-themed
playground equipment accessible to children of all abilities. For more information
about the Friends of Hargan-Matthews Park, or to make a tax-deductible donation
online, visit the group’s Facebook page at www.facebook.com/friendsofharganmatthewspark.
F. Jenkins, 87
A. "Tom" Palfreeman, 82
L. Wakefield, 92
A. Carter, 80