August 7, 2016

Officer Returns Fire, Kills Suspect In Friday Night’s Beaver Dam Standoff


8/7/16 – Dodge County Sheriff Dale Schmidt is calling Friday night’s death at Beaver Dam’s Spring Lake Apartments a ‘suicide-by-cop’ incident.  He says that is a scenario where a suspect creates a deadly force situation where law enforcement is forced to act to stop a potentially deadly threat to themselves and the community at large.  At a press conference yesterday, Beaver Dam Police Chief John Kreuziger explained what happened after his department received a check welfare call at 6:46 pm on Friday about a resident at 215 Woodland Drive.  He says the person who called police told dispatch that the male subject was threatening suicide to friends and had access to a firearm.  Beave Dam Police responded, set up a perimeter, and started negotiating with the subject.  The man told officers he wished to end his life through suicide-by-cop and began waiving a firearm on his balcony.  After roughly one hour of negotiations, Beaver Dam Police requested assistance from the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office.  Sheriff Schmidt says the negotiations continued upon he and his crew’s arrival.  Schmidt says his officers attempted to end the negotiations peacefully, but the suspect turned the gun and fired a shot at one of his deputies.  The deputy returned fire to end the threat, and the man was shot and killed at 8:46 pm.  Schmidt says the deputy, who is a nine year veteran of the sheriff’s office, was uninjured in the exchange and has been placed on non-disciplinary administrative leave while the state Department of Criminal Investigation conducts its investigation.  The sheriff believes his deputy used appropriate force.  The suspect was on his second floor balcony during the exchange and most of the negotiations came from the ground level.  Chief Kreuziger says one of his officers on the scene is trained in hostage situations.  Law enforcement does not believe there was anyone else in the unit during the incident.  Many residents were not allowed back into their apartments until the early hours of Saturday.  Schmidt says there is no further threat to the community.  Names are being withheld pending family notification and will not be released until noon on Monday at the earliest.


Wisconsin Schools Ranked Among Best In Nation


8/7/16 – High marks for the Wisconsin public school system come from the personal finance website  Wisconsin schools are ranked fifth among the states on the site’s “Best School Systems in America” list.  Each state was measured on 17 categories, from student-teacher ratio to average S-A-T and A-C-T scores, to dropout rates.  The report ranks the Badger State schools tops in the nation for lowest percentage of students reporting they have been threatened or injured by a weapon while they were on school property.  Massachusetts was ranked number-one in the nation.


UW Hospital Tops Wisconsin Healthcare Centers List


8/7/16 – The state’s top hospital remains U-W Hospital and Clinics for the fifth straight year.   New rankings from U-S News and World Report also have the hospital ranked among the nation’s 50 best in nine categories. However, there are no hospitals from the state on the 2016-17 Best Hospitals Honor Roll. The publication compared almost 5,000 hospitals in developing the rankings.


Federal Bankruptcy Filings Down In Badger State


8/7/16 – Federal bankruptcy filings in Wisconsin are down and have fallen to their lowest level in almost a decade.  For the first six months of the year, federal bankruptcy filings reportedly fell by nearly 11% to just over 9,000.  Wisconsin hadn’t had fewer than 10,000 bankruptcy filings through June since 2007. Bankruptcy attorney Robert Waud says filings are down because many people have returned to work and the economy has improved. Nationwide, bankruptcy filings declined about 6% in the first half of the year compared to the same time last year.


State Wants Family Planning Clinics To Return Funds


8/7/16 – Wisconsin’s Department of Health Services is asking seven family planning clinics to return about half the Medicaid dollars they received from the state. A new audit found the clinics over-charged the state for medical services. D-H-S looked at only $130,000 in bills and found $63,000 in over-payments. The state’s Office of the Inspector General says it wants the money returned.


Alliant Energy Profits Up In Second Quarter


8/7/16 – Second quarter profits are up for Madison-based utility Alliant Energy Corporation.  Net income rose $0.37 a share to $83,900,000, with revenue coming in at $754,600,000.  Revenues climbed for both natural gas and electricity sales.


Local Schools To Benefit From Columbia County Grant


8/7/16 – A number of local schools will benefit from a $23,000 grant that was recently awarded to Columbia County’s Health and Human Services Department.  The Wisconsin Seal-A-Smile grant will allow qualifying schools to provide dental screenings and sealants for their students.  Schools include: Cambria-Friesland Elementary and Middle Schools, Columbus Elementary, Fall River Elementary and High Schools, Randolph Elementary, and Rio Elementary and Middle/High Schools.  A total of seventeen schools will share grant funds in Columbia County.  The program rewards schools that offer serve free and reduced lunches to 35% or more of their student population.


Grothman Disagrees With Judge Who Struck Down Early Voting Laws


8/7/16 – Congressman Glenn Grothman says he doesn’t see why a federal judge struck down Wisconsin election laws limiting early voting. He also feels there was no need to adjust the photo ID law. The congressman says a person who shows up without an ID you can fill out an affidavit. He says that makes it a weak photo ID law. Grothman himself authored law on limiting early voting to weekdays and regular hours when he was a state senator. He says a judge appointed by President Barack Obama said the law is wrong because it discriminates against African Americans. Grothman doesn’t feel that is the case and says the judge’s decision is based on disparate impact.  The congressman feels anything could be interpreted as having an adverse impact on a race of people. Grothman, a Republican from Glenbeulah, represents the state’s sixth district.


Watertown Riverfest Returns This Week


8/7/16 – Watertown’s Riverfest returns for its 30th year later this week.  The four-day festival runs Thursday through Sunday at Riverside Park.  There will be live entertainment throughout the celebration, including a performance from Jay and the Americans.  Thursday’s festivities begin at 4 pm with a Taste of Watertown.  Things get underway at 11 am on Friday and are capped off by a fireworks show at 10 pm.  There will also be a performance form the Beaverland Must-Skis water ski team.  Saturday and Sunday both begin at 8 am with a craft fair both days.  A number of tournaments will be held Saturday including tennis, fishing, bean bags, and horseshoes.  A classic car show starts 9 am Sunday.  Admission each day is free.


BDCH Holding CPR Class


8/7/16 – Local residents have a chance to learn CPR.  The Beaver Dam Community Hospital is hosting a class tomorrow night inspired by the American Heart Association Family and Friends group.  In addition to properly giving CPR, participants will learn to use an automatic electronic defibrillator, assess a situation, and help someone who is choking.  The class is free and runs from 6 pm to 8 pm.  Anyone over the age of ten is encouraged to attend.


Watertown Museum Holding Open House


8/7/16 – People are invited to tour Watertown’s Octagon House Museum this afternoon.  It’s the site of the Watertown Historical Society’s annual ice cream and cake social.  There will be a performance by the First Brigade Band who combines war-time songs on antique instruments with historical anecdotes.  The event runs from 1:30 pm to 4 pm and is free to the public.  The Octagon House is located at 919 Charles Street.


Fundraiser Wraps Up At The Oaks Later This Month


8/7/16 – The Savanna Oaks’ First Annual “Rooted as One” fundraiser wraps up August 28th. It concludes with a dinner at the Oaks in celebration of the naming of the 2016 Rooted as One recipient, Abby McBride. She was chosen from applications received earlier this year. McBride was diagnosed with cancer in February. She is a single mother of a three-year-old daughter. Residents or businesses from the Columbus, Fall River and Rio area are invited to support this event by donating gifts, raffle items, or cash. The celebration includes a chicken dinner, music, games, and a bag toss tournament.


Hospital Holding Rummage Sale


8/7/16 – The Waupun Memorial Hospital is holding a rummage sale later this month ahead of kids going back to school.  It will feature gently-used clothing for all ages.  The sale is free to Waupun residents.  All participants are encouraged to bring one non-perishable food item to donate to the Waupun Food Pantry.  The sale runs from 8 am to 3 pm on Thursday, August 18 at the Union Congregational Church at 125 Beaver Dam Street.