News – December 22, 2016

Leroy Meats Coming To Fox Lake


12/22/16 – A longtime Dodge County business is expanding into the City of Fox Lake.  Mayor Tom Bednarek announced at last night’s council meeting that Leroy Meats plans to build a facility for both production and retail operations with the possibility of also expanding their sales outside state lines.  Leroy’s Owner Scott Hurst says they will construct an 11,000 square foot facility west of Kwik Trip on Highway 33 and notes space is available to double that at a later date, if needed.  The city is working to create access roads that will run around the property.  Hurst says the plan is to run one shift with expanded evening and weekend hours from their Horicon location.  He says at least 15 full-time jobs should be added.  Hurst says his company decided to open a facility in Fox Lake since recent expansions caused them to run out of space for production in Horicon.  City officials say they offered multiple incentives to attract Leroy Meats including: selling them the land for one dollar and assisting with their monthly loan payments for three years.  City Administrator Gary Rogers expects the final dollar figure to be around $1,400,000-$1,500,000.  Mayor Bednarek believes the money spent will pay off as this is the “biggest retailer to come to Fox Lake.”  Since Leroy will be in the city’s third tax incremental financing district, Bednarek notes the city will be able to collect 100% of taxes for 18-19 years, stating the decision will “pay for itself in no time.”  The mayor feels this will be good for continued growth on the city’s west side as the Hookstras, from whom the land was purchased for Leroy, have reportedly said they plan to offer an additional property for sale/rent once work begins on the Leroy project. Bednarek says the goal is to complete necessary infrastructure work in the spring, start construction in early summer, and have the facility ready for occupancy in the fall.  Both Bednarek and Hurst believe other businesses will soon come to that part of Fox Lake.  Hurst says he has been in talks with people interested in starting new businesses in the area, and Bednarek says another 11 acres are available for retail development near the Leroy site.  Leroy Meats has operated out of Horicon for roughly 25 years and has been in Dodge County for nearly a century.


Fox Lake Council Approves New City Administrator


12/22/16 – The City of Fox Lake has a new city administrator.  The common council last night approved Mayor Tom Bednarek’s appointment of Dean Perlick, who is set to start on March 1 and will work 20 hours per week.  Perlick replaces current part-time administrator Gary Rogers who is retiring at year’s end.  Chuck Schranz is serving as interim administrator.


Man Flown To Hospital Following High-Speed Chase


12/22/16 – A Madison man was flown to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries after crashing his vehicle during a high-speed chase.  According to the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office, a deputy made a traffic stop at 2:23am Wednesday on Highway 16 near Highway 26 in the Town of Emmet.  26-year-old Sean Maurice Johnson was heading westbound on Highway 16 when the deputy pulled him over on suspicion of impaired driving.  Johnson reportedly fled, leading the deputy on a one-mile pursuit before his vehicle left the road, rolled, and came to rest.  He allegedly fled on foot but was taken into custody a short time later.  Both drugs and alcohol are believed to have been factors in the incident, which remains under investigation.


Jury Trial Set For Man Accused Of Killing Wife


12/22/16 – A week-long jury trial was put on the calendar yesterday for a Friesland man accused of killing his wife.  Kevin Krueger reportedly claimed he does not remember shooting his estranged wife to death at a hotel in February. The 52-year-old faces four felony counts, including homicide. Krueger allegedly stole a shotgun from a friend and used it to kill 41-year-old Tracy Krueger the Ridge Motor Inn in Portage. The Columbia County trial is set to begin June 19, 2017.


Decision On Brantner Retrial Delayed Until January


12/22/16 – A decision on whether a 63-year-old Kenosha man should be retried for the murder of Berit Beck will have to wait until after the holidays. The case has a new judge, Fond du Lac County Judge Robert Wirtz, who is being asked to decide if evidence is sufficient to warrant another trial for Dennis Brantner. Defense attorney Craig Powell wanted Wirtz to review the video interviews Kenosha police and Fond du Lac County sheriff’s investigators did with Brantner first, interviews the judge has not seen yet. Powell and District Attorney Eric Toney argued whether fingerprint and other evidence presented in a June jury trial was sufficient.  During yesterday’s (Wed) motion hearing, Judge Wirtz said that he (quote) “wonders if this is a bridge that has already been crossed,” referring to rulings Judge Gary Sharpe made during the jury trial. Wirtz is considering a similar motion on the sufficiency of the evidence.  A ruling is expected during a Monday, January 23rd hearing. If Wirtz rules that evidence is sufficient there will be a retrial. Beck was murdered in 1990 and the Sturtevant woman’s body was found near Waupun.


Man Pleads Not Guilty To Fox Lake High-Speed Chase


12/22/16 – A Milwaukee man pled not guilty at arraignment yesterday on charges he led an officer on a high speed chase in Fox Lake.  Alasan Dawan is facing one felony count of Attempting to Flee a Traffic Officer.  In July, the 19-year-old allegedly drove his vehicle in and out of a ditch on Highway 33 while he was passing an officer who was at the scene of a fatal accident.  The officer got in his car and started following Dawan, who was reportedly going up to 30 miles per hour over the speed limit, ignored the squad car sirens, and blew multiple stop signs.  Dawan stopped the vehicle after a near three-mile long pursuit.  If he is convicted, Dawan faces over three years in prison.  He is due back in court in February.


Beaver Dam Woman Charged In Brazen Vehicle Theft


12/22/16 – A Beaver Dam woman is facing felony charges for allegedly stealing her brother’s car. Deja Montgomery reportedly took the car without permission late last month and drove it to Madison, where it was recovered the following day. The victim contacted authorities because he feared Montgomery might sell the car for drugs as she had been (quote) “going down the wrong path lately.” A neighbor who witnessed the 21-year-old take the vehicle told investigators that the theft occurred while several Beaver Dam Police Department squad cars were nearby responding to an unrelated check welfare call. The witness said that Montgomery had to walk between multiple officers to get to the vehicle, then drove away slowly maneuvering through several squad cars and bumping into the curb before speeding off. If convicted, the felony count of Operating A Motor Vehicle Without Owner’s Consent carries a maximum six year prison sentence. Montgomery has an initial appearance scheduled in Dodge County court next month.


Walker Open To Split DNR Proposal


12/22/16 – Once again, a state lawmaker proposes splitting the Department of Natural Resources into separate agencies for hunting and fishing and for environmental enforcement. Governor Scott Walker said Wednesday that it is an “interesting idea” that might have merit. In a year-end interview with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Walker says his office has examined the latest proposal from fellow Assembly Republican Adam Jarchow of Balsam Lake. Walker calls it interesting, and he says Jarchow has “probably spent as much time and interest in looking into this issue as about any lawmaker” he’s seen in the past. Lawmakers of both parties have called for splitting the D-N-R from time to time and none have gone anywhere. Walker’s administration recently proposed a major reorganization of the D-N-R for next year’s state budget, and the governor says he’d like to “give that some time to play out.”


Governor Not Wild About High School Drug Tests


12/22/16 – Governor Scott Walker says he’s not wild about making high school students pass drug tests if they want to be in extracurricular activities or park their cars at school. Assembly Republican Joel Kleefisch of Oconomowoc says he’ll push for the requirements next year as part of a recommendation by various leaders to fight heroin abuse. But during his annual year end interviews with individual reporters, Walker said he had not heard the drug testing idea discussed anywhere else — and he wants to focus on things that “seem to have the most universal attention” in the upcoming legislative session. G-O-P Assembly Speaker Robin Vos says he has not “seen a groundswell of support” for Kleefisch’s proposed bill.


State Justice Department: State Should Not Redraw District Maps


12/22/16 – The state Justice Department says Wisconsin should not be forced to redraw its Assembly and Senate districts until the U-S Supreme Court rules on the matter. A panel of three federal judges ruled in November that the maps drawn by G-O-P lawmakers in 2011 were unconstitutional, saying they wrongly prevented Democrats from winning enough seats based on the numbers of votes they received. The judicial panel gave both sides until Wednesday to suggest future courses of action — and the Justice Department says lawmakers should be allowed to redraft the maps, and then put the order on hold while the Supreme Court handles the state’s appeal of the November ruling. G-O-P Governor Scott Walker, who approved his party’s maps, says the state should keep trying to reverse the federal order.