News – October 8, 2020

(Rubicon) A Juneau man was sentenced yesterday (Wednesday) to ten years in prison and five years of extended supervision for not having a valid driver’s license at the time of a fatal crash three years ago. Robert Underwood told investigators that he was coughing and choking before he abruptly crossed the centerline on State Highway 60. Underwood’s license was suspended at the time because of a speeding ticket and the 49-year-old claimed he did not reinstate it because the line was too long. At sentencing, District Attorney Kurt Klomberg said the defendant always has a convenient excuse for the harm he causes.

(Markesan) Markesan School District Superintendent and Athletic Director Duane Bark passed away Wednesday evening. The Trailways Conference Twitter account shared the sad news saying Bark died after a three-month battle with COVID-19, noting his impact and saying he will be deeply missed. Bark served the Markesan School District since 2011 and also did part-time work as a sports play-by-play announcer for WBEV/95X/DailyDodge.com during his time in the area. Good Karma Brands Beaver Dam Division Manager Ryan Gabel says Bark was a (quote) “great broadcaster, enthusiastic sports fan and all around great guy” adding that “everyone at Good Karma Brands extends their deepest sympathies to Bark’s family and friends.” Duane Bark was 61-years-old.

(Dodge County) Wisconsin health officials are reporting 2,319 positive coronavirus cases in Wednesday’s daily update. There are 25,500 active cases in the state, an increase of 648 from Tuesday. State health officials recorded 16 deaths Wednesday, for a total of 1,415. Dodge County has 19 deaths on record and 2,268 cases, an increase of 42 from Tuesday. County health officials are actively monitoring 547 people.

(Dodge County) Dodge County saw a five-percent jump in the rate of positive tests over last week, according to the latest update from the Dodge County Health Department. From September 28th through October 4th, county health officials say 22.6-percent of all tests administered were positive; the previous week it was 17.6-percent. Dodge County remains in phase one of its three phase Safe Restart Plan. Contact tracing was downgraded from the yellow to the red and joins cases as the only two metrics in the “of concern” category. Hospitals remain in the yellow while PPE and testing are in the green.

(Kenosha) The man shot and paralyzed by police in Kenosha is out of the hospital. The attorney for Jacob Blake says his client is out of the hospital and in a rehabilitation center. He had been there since August 23rd when Kenosha police officer Rusten Sheskey shot him in the back seven times. That set off rioting in Kenosha and across the country.  Officer Sheskey has not been charged for shooting Blake.  Police were responding to a domestic incident report when Blake was shot. Sheskey’s attorney said the officer thought Blake might have been trying to drive away with a woman’s child.

(Alto) A pole shed was completely damaged by fire in the Township of Alto last (Wednesday) night. Fond du Lac Sheriff’s deputies and the Alto Fire Department were dispatched to N9210 Marshview Road around 7:30pm. Crews arrived to a 60-foot by 80-foot pole shed with visible flames coming from the structure. The shed’s contents which included various farming equipment and hay bales were also a complete loss. No injuries were reported. The blaze remains under investigation but is not considered suspicious.

(Beaver Dam) A new business coming to Beaver Dam will be getting a downtown revitalization grant. The city’s Community Development Committee yesterday approved a $5000 New and Expanding Business Grant for Mill House Quilts, which is moving into the former Book World store front at 116 Front Street. Mill House Quilts, which also has a store in Waunakee, is slated to have a soft opening in Beaver Dam as early as November 1. The funding for the grants is generated through TIF District #6, which is a blighted district meaning revenue generated can only be used in the downtown area for efforts including revitalization.

(Madison) Police in Madison are not losing tear gas and pepper spray — at least not yet. Madison’s city council is agreeing to study the question instead. Activists, and some city leaders, pressed to ban tear gas and other non-lethal crowd control tools during a summer of rioting. Police said at the time losing those tools would only increase the chance that someone would get hurt. The study is scheduled to be done by early next year.

(Wisconsin) The head of Wisconsin’s biggest teachers union says he wants state lawmakers to “do something” about the coronavirus. Ron Martin is president of the Wisconsin Education Association Council. He says lawmakers are ignoring the pandemic.  Martin has not said exactly what he wants lawmakers to do. WEAC and other teachers’ unions in Wisconsin have pushed for online learning at home until the state’s big COVID-19 numbers come down.