News – December 14, 2022

(Beaver Dam) The Beaver Dam fire chief is highlighting fire safety as in-home wood burning increases in the winter months. Michael Wesle recommends getting an annual chimney inspection done by a certified professional. He adds that fireplace owners should only burn dry, seasoned wood and avoid throwing in cardboard, paper, or garbage. Wesle also encourages everyone to check that their smoke and carbon monoxide alarms are working properly.

(Fond du Lac) The Fond du Lac County sheriff is commending one of his deputies for helping contain a house fire before it could spread. Deputy Jeffrey Vaile was the first to respond to a home on Schoenberg Road in the town of Calumet during the early morning hours of December 2nd. Vaile grabbed a fire extinguisher and quickly put out the fire. Sheriff Ryan Waldschmidt says without Vaile’s actions the house could have been destroyed. The cause of the blaze is not considered suspicious and may have been caused by a frayed extension cord powering external lights.

(Berlin) A father and son from Green Lake County have been charged with in connection with a murder-for-hire plot against an heir to a family estate. Sixty-two-year-old Joseph Anthony Hoppa and 38-year-old Jason Hoppa, both of Berlin, made their initial appearances yesterday (Tuesday) on charges of Solicitation of First Degree Intentional Homicide. A tip to authorities in October said the Hoppas had offered $20,000 up front and $20,000 when the job was done. The “hit man” had informed the girlfriend of the intended victim of the Hoppas intentions. The targeted victim is the primary beneficiary of a family estate and Joseph Hoppa was allegedly mad he did not get what he expected from the estate. Cash bond was set at $50,000 each. Preliminary hearings are scheduled next month.

(Beaver Dam) The Beaver Dam School Board unanimously approved the adoption of the district safety drills report. Board member Marge Jorgensen is impressed with how well the teachers and staff know what to do in an active shooter or lockdown scenario. Another board member, Isaac Dornfeld, indicated that he is happy with the improved response times. In addition to active shooter scenarios, the school also prepares for fires and natural disasters.

(Juneau) The Dodge County Sheriff explains the difference between a sheriff’s office and a sheriff’s department. In his monthly column, Dale Schmidt says the difference between the two is that an office has inherent common law powers and sovereignty granted under a state’s constitution or state law. A department uses its limited authority based on the state’s constitution or state statute.

(Franklin) An injured bald eagle found in Franklin last week has died. The bird died Monday night after going into cardiac arrest during a complex and specialized surgery. Department of Natural Resources wardens believe the eagle was shot. The bird suffered a fracture of the humerus bone in its wing as well as a substantial wound at the fracture site. The injury left the eagle debilitated on the ground when it was found. The DNR is asking the public for information that could identify the person or people responsible. -WRN

(Horicon) There is an opportunity to donate blood in Horicon today (Wednesday). The Horicon Police Department is hosting the blood drive in partnership with the American Red Cross. It will get underway at 12pm and run until 5pm at 220 Ellison Street. For appointments call 1-800-Red Cross (1-800-733-2767) or visit and enter the sponsor code which is Horicon.