Nehls Won’t Leave His Doors Unlocked Ever Again
12/13/13 - Former Dodge County Sheriff Todd Nehls says he’ll never leave the doors of his residence unlocked again. Nehls was the victim of a burglary on Wednesday; his newly-deputized son apprehended the suspect after walking in on the crime in progress. The suspect got in through an open door in the garage and, when confronted, told Nehls son that he was in the house to install a stereo surround system. Nehls says there is a lesson to be learned. He says this is a case where a brazen daytime burglar learned no one was home and made entry. Nehls says the suspect no doubt tried knocking first if someone had opened the door, the suspect would have made-up a “cockamamie story” about why he was there.
If it was not for the suspect being caught red-handed, Nehls says the crime may not have even been detected right away. “The suspect in this case did not take all of the cash, he took half of it. He did not take all the prescription drugs, he took half.” The former sheriff says he was trying to take enough without making it look like there had been a burglary, leading Nehls to assume the subject would have come back for the rest of the items in the next couple weeks. He says this MO is more common in home burglaries than people realize and people should take those “eerie feelings” of someone having been in your house very seriously. From his years of experience in law enforcement, Nehls learned that people discover missing items days or even weeks after a burglary.
Nehls was actually burglarized twice on Wednesday. A couple hours before learning about the armed burglary in his own house, Nehls was contacted by a tenant from one of his rental properties in Fox Lake who advised that he had just been burglarized. Nehls says it appears to be coincidence but he is nonetheless waiting to hear the details of the investigation. A 45-year-old Beaver Dam man is expected to be formally charged by the Dodge County District Attorney as early as today.
BD Man Appears On Drunken High Speed Case
12/13/13 - A Beaver Dam man made his Initial Appearance in Dodge County court yesterday on charges that he sparked a drunken high speed chase. Mark Reichwald Jr. is charged with one felony count of Attempting to Flee a Traffic Officer. Beaver Dam police initiated a stop for a traffic violation near Madison and Rowell streets just before midnight Wednesday. The 21-year-old allegedly refused to stop, sparking a chase down Madison Street that reached speeds of 80-miles-per-hour. The pursuit left the city limits, where speeds on County Highway G reportedly reached speeds in excess of 95mph. The chase continued down Highway DE to Forest Road, where the suspect crashed his vehicle into several mailboxes near the entrance of a mobile home park. The 21-year-old then fled on foot into a nearby residence and was taken into custody a short time later. Reichwald allegedly had a blood alcohol level of point-one-nine-seven (0.197). The charge carries a maximum prison sentence of three-and-a-half years.
Eggert Proceeds To Trial On OWI Injury Charges
12/13/13 - A Madison man will proceed to trial on charges that he injured two people in a drunken driving accident in the Town of Beaver Dam. John Eggert III Thursday waived his right to a preliminary hearing on four felony counts of OWI Causing Injury, each of which carries a maximum six-year prison sentence upon conviction. He has two previous OWI convictions dating back to 1991 with the most recent in 1998. The accident occurred in August at the intersection of County Road’s S and G. The driver and passenger in the other vehicle sustained whiplash, neck sprains and back spasms. The 54-year-old allegedly tried to leave the scene but an eyewitness grabbed his keys. He told police he had three or four beers in Monona and thought he was in Cottage Grove. His blood-alcohol level was reportedly over twice the legal limit for driving at point-one-eight-two (.182). Eggert will be arraigned next month.
BD Man Charged In Garage Burglary
12/13/13 - A Beaver Dam man accused of burglarizing a garage has been formally charged. Shannon Loring made his initial appearance in Dodge County court yesterday on one felony count of Burglary and one misdemeanor count of Criminal Trespass. The homeowner happened to remotely close the door and saw a person run from the garage. Loring fled but reportedly left his bike at the scene and was apprehended after returning to retrieve it. The 33-year-old initially told police that the bike was not his before admitting it was. Before he invoked his right to remain silent, Loring told police he went into the open garage to stay warm. Police found that power tools had been stolen. The charges carry a maximum term of over 13 years behind bars, if he is convicted.
Woman Arraigned on Prison Smuggling Charges
12/13/13 - A Black Earth woman, accused of smuggling chewing tobacco into the Fox Lake Correctional Institution, entered a “not guilty” plea at arraignment yesterday in Dodge County court. Marie Kalsow is charged with a felony count of Delivering Illegal Articles to an Inmate, which carries a maximum prison term of three-and-a-half years in prison if she is convicted. Prosecutors say the 30-year-old brought two balloons to an inmate last month. Kalsow has a status conference on the calendar next month.
Fond du Lac’s K9 Grendel Retiring
12/13/13 - Fond du Lac Police K-9 Grendel has a life of leisure ahead of him as he retires from active duty next spring. He and his human partner Ryan Williams were both shot during a fatal standoff incident that resulted in the death of fellow police officer Craig Birkholz in March of 2011. Williams says Grendel still gets excited about going to work. But life has changed Williams is now on the day shift and the department will be getting a new K-9 officer and handler. Both Officer Williams and Grendel were inspirations to the community when they recovered from critical gunshot wounds in the wake of the shooting.
Committee Not Taking Up Police Oversight Bill
12/13/13 - The head of the state Assembly's Criminal Justice Committee says it will not be easy to pass a bill creating a state board to review deaths involving police officers. The panel held a public hearing Thursday on the bill, proposed by Assembly Republican Garey Bies of Sister Bay. It would require police agencies to use outside investigators to look into things like shooting deaths of suspects by officers. Also, a state Justice Department panel would have to review the deaths, and make recommendations to prosecutors on possible charges. Committee chairman Joel Kleefisch of Oconomowoc said the measure would have a hard time getting through the Legislature, because it might suggest that lawmakers don't trust law enforcement. Bies -- a former chief sheriff's deputy in Door County -- said many police agencies already use outside departments as matters of policy. He also said the bill is not as critical of officers as Kleefisch might believe.
Governor Signs ‘Brown Jug’ Law
12/13/13 - A new bill signed into law Thursday would let Wisconsin bars and liquor stores sue underage customers who use fake I-D's to buy booze. Governor Scott Walker agreed to let retailers file small claims suits for up to a-thousand dollars against 18-to-20-year-olds, or the parents or guardians of minors who try to buy alcohol. Assembly Republican Andre Jacque of Green Bay proposed the measure, patterned after Alaska's "Brown Jug Law" which he says has improved compliance dramatically. Jacque says liquor providers are liable for selling to underage customers -- so it's only fair to sue customers who use false pretenses to get their beer-and-booze. Critics feared entrapment on the part of alcohol sellers. In Alaska, those businesses often seek out-of-court settlements that generate to reward employees who catch the illegal drinkers.
Pocan Only Wisconsin House Member Against Budget
12/13/13 - Madison Democrat Mark Pocan is the only Wisconsin U-S House member to vote against a federal budget agreement that overwhelmingly passed Thursday. The 332-to-94 vote was a huge victory for Janesville Republican Paul Ryan. The House budget chair and his Democratic Senate counterpart crafted the two-year package. It raises the federal deficit by smaller amounts than planned, and eases up on some of the 63-billion dollars in automatic federal spending cuts scheduled through 2015. Pocan said the sequestration relief does not go far enough -- the deal was paid for on the backs of military families and the middle class -- and it did not include an extension of federal jobless benefits which are due to expire this month. Senate leaders promised a vote early next year on extending unemployment benefits. Menomonee Falls Republican Jim Sensenbrenner said the agreement is not perfect, but both parties made sacrifices. Milwaukee Democrat Gwen Moore said the deal is a small but positive step toward breaking a pattern of going from crisis-to-crisis. Ryan said Republicans would have to win more elections to get all of what they want -- but for now, he urged them to make the divided government work. The package now goes to the Senate, where more opposition is expected from minority Republicans.
Assembly Committee Supports Common Core
12/13/13 - A special Wisconsin Assembly committee has voted to keep the state's Common Core standards for English-and-math education. Majority Republicans recommended Thursday that the Legislature review the standards on a regular basis -- and that schools be limited in obtaining fingerprints and using retinal scans on students. They also said Common Core should be tailored to Wisconsin. Kaukauna Republican Jim Steineke said the state should not quote, "take what's pushed down from the national level and swallow it whole." Democrats rejected many of the eight proposals endorsed by the G-O-P majority. Cross Plains Democrat Sondy Pope warned that limiting bio-metric data could hurt the ability of school nurses to take the temperature of a sick child, or monitor those with special needs. Republicans said limits need to be set before abuses can occur -- like government snooping through student video cameras on their computers. Forty-five states use the Common Core standards. Wisconsin was among the first to adopt them three years ago, and they're being revisited amid concerns that they'll result in a national takeover of education. A similar review panel in the state Senate has yet to announce its recommendations.
Walker Say Kenosha Casino Decision Will Take Months
12/13/13 - Governor Scott Walker now says his final decision on the proposed Kenosha casino will be months away. The Republican Walker said Thursday that it's worth taking quote, "many months into 2014" to review all the factors. They include the increase in jobs, and possible lost revenues by other casinos due to the presence of the proposed Hard Rock gaming house and hotel. The U-S Bureau of Indian Affairs endorsed the project earlier this year, thus giving the governor the final say. Walker said the B-I-A took nine years to act on the project, which would be owned by the Menominee tribe of northeast Wisconsin. The governor said the state's review would not be nearly that long. Walker acknowledged a growing interest in seeing the new Hard Rock become a reality. A U-W Milwaukee poll earlier this week showed that 53-percent of Wisconsin registered voters want Walker to approve the new casino, and 32-percent said he should block it. In September, the same poll revealed a much smaller margin of support, at 44-to-41 percent.