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Top Stories January 27, 2015

Child Abuser Granted Conditional Release


1/27/15 - A request for conditional release was granted Monday for a former Beaver Dam man implicated in a severe case of child abuse and neglect. In November of 2012, 47-year-old Larry Hillyer was committed to Mendota Mental Health Institute in Winnebago for up to 12 years after being found guilty by reason of mental defect for a pair of felony Child Abuse charges. Hillyer was determined by mental health professionals to be safe to return under community supervision by the Department of Health Services. District Attorney Kurt Klomberg says he will be transitioning to a state-approved apartment in West Bend where his medication will be regularly supervised. In January of 2011, authorities found three kids bruised and burned, starving and freezing, huddled together on a couch wrapped in blankets.  Hillyer, their mothers boyfriend, made them all refer to him has “God.” Police say they found Hillyer and 36-year-old Mandy Molina of West Bend upstairs, unable to comprehend questioning. Molina was sentenced to six years conditional release in 2012.


Beaver Dam Murder Suspect Trial Delayed


1/27/15 - A weeklong jury trial for a Beaver Dam woman accused of murdering her boyfriend over 13 years ago has been delayed. A jury was to decide next week if 39-year-old Leah Waldhart was involved in the killing of Curtis Wyleski whose body was found near Fall River in 2001. Judge Alan White cited a (quote) “egregious violation of due process” in the State Crime Lab as the reason for the postponement adding that the delay was “totally inexcusable.” The 42-year-old Wyleski died of an apparent cocaine overdose but without the presence of cocaine in his nostrils, investigators cannot say for certain how the drug was ingested. A witness came forward when the cold case was re-opened in 2012 and told investigators that Waldhart confessed the murder saying she gave him cocaine to kill him and pushed him into a ditch when he collapsed. If convicted of First Degree Intentional Homicide, Waldhart could spend the rest of her life in prison. The jury trial is now scheduled to begin in mid-April. White will consider a reduction in Waldhart’s bond at a hearing next Monday.


Beaver Dam Woman Sentenced In Cooking Oil Assault


1/27/15 - A Beaver Dam woman was sentenced Monday to three years in prison for throwing hot cooking oil on her boyfriend. After a one-day jury trial in October, 25-year-old Shanijah Telique Conner was found guilty of a felony count of Aggravated Battery Intending Bodily Harm. Authorities responded to a report in March from a woman who claimed her boyfriend was going to kill her. Conner was said to be hysterically crying when officers arrived on scene. The victim told investigators that the 26-year-old man was sleeping when Conner came into the bedroom and dumped a pot of scalding grease on him.  The victim sustained third degree burns to his neck, chest and leg. Telique received the maximum sentence of three years in prison, along with three years of extended supervision. She was also ordered to pay $1600 in restitution. 


Columbus Teen Sentenced In Gas Station Theft


1/27/15 - A Columbus teen entered a “no contest” plea Monday in Dodge County court in connection with last fall’s hold-up of Casey’s General Store in Beaver Dam. 17-year-old Ross Goodinson pled to felony Theft of Movable Property. A pre-sentencing investigation was ordered and a hearing is on the calendar in March. Goodinson’s alleged accomplice, 18-year-old Kent Eisner of Fall River, is scheduled to enter a plea in March. Authorities responded to the gas station on the 900 block of North University Avenue on November 18. One suspect entered the store and passed a note to the clerk demanding cash and cigarettes. No weapons were used or implied. The subject fled on foot to a vehicle which responding officers located one block away from the gas station. Cash and cigarettes were confiscated as evidence.


Dodgeland Schools Exploring Block Scheduling


1/27/15 - Officials in the Dodgeland School District are looking at the possibility of switching to block scheduling the middle and high schools. Block Scheduling is a system that replaces the more traditional schedule of six or seven, 40–50 minute daily classes with longer class periods that meet fewer times each day and week. The school board in Juneau last night approved the formation of a committee to study the move. Superintendent Annette Thompson says the committee will be comprised of administrators, teachers, parents and school board members to explore advantages and disadvantages. There are no immediate plans to implement block scheduling and Thompson says it would be at least two years before anything is implemented.


20 Minutes Added To Dodgeland School Day Next Fall


1/27/15 - The school day will be 20 minutes longer for students in the Dodgeland School District starting next fall. The school board last night approved adding ten minutes at the beginning of the day and ten minutes at the end. Starting next year, middle and high school students will start class at 7:50am and the final bell will ring at 3:10pm. Elementary students will start at 8am with school letting out at 3pm.


Mayville Setting Process For Garbage Complaints


1/27/15 - Mayville’s Public Works Committee of the Whole voted 4-2 Monday night to deal with complaints over garbage collection costs for multi-family homes and duplexes on a case-by-case basis.  The city’s current contract with Advanced Disposal states that each family in a dwelling is to be assessed $12.29 per month for garbage collection on their water bill.  Thus a person living in one unit of a two-family dwelling but who is not renting out the other unit may have to pay $24.58 each month for their collection. To drop the cost to just one set of containers, a person in that situation would have to change the residence from being a two-family address to a one-family address.  Alderman Ken Neumann voted in favor of the proposal as he believes dealing with the individual cases will be quite manageable as he does not expect there to be a large quantity of them.  All of the cases that do arise from this matter will be heard by the Public Works Committee.  Alderman Robert Boelk Jr. voted against the matter as he wanted to see Mayville follow Horicon’s policies as that is the municipality after whom they looked at in the creation of their own program.  As compared to Mayville’s current system, Horicon charges one price for all of the residents living in a duplex.


Mayville Mulls Employee Fitness Incentive


1/27/15 - The Mayville Common Council’s Personnel Committee held preliminary discussions Monday night over employee benefits and compensation for the year 2016.  Committee Chair Joe Hohmann suggested a wellness program in which city employees could opt to enroll that would include a membership to the city’s TAG fitness center.  Those who participate in the program would pay a 9.5% premium while those who do not would see a 12% premium.  Employees’ current deductible is around five percent with individuals paying $1,500 and families spending $3,000.  The council is going to research the rates of other local municipalities before continuing discussions.


Mayville May Revisit Facade Incentive In Next Budget


1/27/15 - The Mayville Common Council’s Finance Committee discussed a facade improvement program for its downtown area on Monday.  The program would be designed to improve the city’s downtown business climate by improving the aesthetic appeal of the front of its current stores.  Businesses would bring proposals to the city’s Common Council who would pay some of the cost for the revitalization projects while the stores would also contribute funds.  The committee agreed not to take action on the matter this year as the budget is already in place but rather plans to discuss it this August during the 2016 budget creation process.


Propane Costs Up From Two Years Ago


1/27/15 - Wisconsinites who heat their homes with propane are paying a little more than two years ago -- but nowhere near the huge spikes from last year at this time. The U-S Energy Information Administration says the average Wisconsin price for residential propane was 1.79-a-gallon as of last week -- down six-cents from December 15th.  But wholesale prices rose by six-cents over the previous week, and last week's consumer price was almost 30-cents above the high of 1.50-a-gallon two winters ago.  Still, today's propane prices are a bargain compared to the five-dollars plus that folks were paying last year at this time.  That was back when the weather much colder and supplies were so short, that a number of rural Wisconsin homeowners did not have their fuel contracts honored.  Beside the weather, state spokeswoman Stephanie Marquis said some other factors have kept prices down this winter.  They include new changes which allow heavier propane trucks to drive on roads they couldn't use before.  Also, Marquis says a new high-efficiency propane terminal at Hixton allows for a faster distribution of more fuel.


GAB Chair Denies Unauthorized Investigation Into Recall


1/27/15 - The new chairman of the state Government Accountability Board said it's "just not true" that board staffers went behind the panel's back to look into alleged illegal activity involving G-O-P recall campaigns.  Retired Dane County Circuit Judge Gerald Nichol responded to comments made by Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos in a T-V report last week.  Vos said G-A-B staffers acted without knowledge of their board members, in the agency's long-ended probe.  The investigation looked into allegations that Governor Scott Walker and other G-O-P recall candidates illegally coordinated campaign finance and other activities in the special elections in 2011-and-'12.  In a letter to Vos released today, Nichol said the Accountability Board's staffers took no action with the board's "full knowledge and prior approval." 


Five Million Dollar Violin Theft Anniversary


1/27/15 - It was a year ago today when Milwaukee Symphony concert-master Frank Almond was robbed of a 300-year-old Stradivarius violin with which he had just performed.  Recently, Almond joined Milwaukee Police and F-B-I agents in a presentation about the case to the F-B-I Citizens' Academy.  He treated the cadets and investigators to a short performance with the five-million-dollar violin. Almond was shot with a Taser stun gun in the parking lot at Wisconsin Lutheran College, right after he performed with the rare Stradivarius the night of last January 27th.  Investigators traced confetti left by the Taser a barber who bought the weapon a few months earlier.  Universal Allah then led police and F-B-I agents to Salah Salahaydn.  He reportedly people it was his "dream crime" to steal the violin because of its value, and the ease of grabbing it from a musician.  It was missing for nine days before Salahaydn led police to the violin, hidden at the home of one of its former owners.  Both Allah and Salahaydn were sentenced to prison for their roles in the robbery.


Yesterday's Headlines
    - Beaver Dam Mulling Two-Year Borrowing Plan
    - DA: 'Technology Driving Increase In Felony Filings'
    - New Sheriff Plotting Equipment Replacement Plan

For those stories and more click here.

For older stories visit our news archive here.