News – December 30, 2020

(Dodge County) The National Weather Service is reporting varying snowfall totals throughout the region. The Sullivan office measured 8.1-inches at 5:45am. Edgerton received 7.8-inches while Fond du Lac picked up 2.2-inches by the time the snow stopped falling. Cedarburg and Mequon tallied 6.5-inches. Stoughton posted 5.3-inches. Watertown reported five inches as of 1:30am.

(Dodge County) Five of Wisconsin’s 72 coronavirus deaths announced yesterday (Tuesday) were Dodge County residents. Dodge County’s death toll is at 120. Two deaths were recorded in Columbia County yesterday while Fond du Lac and Washington counties reported one each. Active cases in the state continue to trend downward with 28,761 in the latest update from state health officials.

(Marquette County) One child drowned when a group of five fell through the ice on Sunday in Marquette County. A caller reported several Amish children had fallen through the ice covering Twin Lake at about 12:30pm while they were ice skating. Four of the children made it out of the cold water safely.  Marquette County Sheriff Joe Konrath says the drowning is not considered to be suspicious, but the investigation is continuing. -WRN

(Waupun) Two Waupun residents were sentenced in Fond du Lac County court this week for their roles in the heroin overdose death of a Fond du Lac man. Forty-year-old Cara Zech was sentenced to nine years in prison and ten years of extended supervision and 42-year-old Anthony Buechel to seven years in prison and five years of extended supervision on First Degree Reckless Homicide charges.  The two were among four people who drove to Milwaukee in July of 2018 to purchase heroin some of which was for Steven Compton. The 23-year-old died of an overdose in his Fond du Lac home the next day.

(Juneau) The Dodge County Sheriff says methamphetamine has been a growing issue in the region. Dale Schmidt says when authorities busted the owner of Mark’s Trucking in Beaver Dam three years ago for distributing meth, it stalled the market for the drug locally. But in recent months, Schmidt says there has been an increase in offenses with more than a dozen cases in the local courts. Schmidt says the drug can quickly destroy a person’s life as they turn to crime in order to pay for their habit. He says getting them help and support is key in beating the addiction.

(Grafton) Fifty vials of Moderna coronavirus vaccine had to be discarded at Aurora Medical Center in Grafton over the weekend.  An internal investigation determined the vials were inadvertently removed from a pharmacy refrigerator overnight Saturday.  It’s being called an “unintended human error” that happened when the vials weren’t replaced in the refrigerator after being removed so other items could be accessed.  Some of the vaccine was administered to team members the same day, but most had to be discarded because it wasn’t kept at a proper temperature to maintain its effectiveness. -WRN

(Kenosha) Kenosha’s leaders are getting bracing for the charging decision in the Jacob Blake case. Blake was shot in the back seven times last August by a Kenosha police officer. Mayor John Antaramian and Police Chief Daniel Miskinis wrote an op-ed piece that appeared in the Kenosha News Sunday. They acknowledged that people will have different opinions and strong emotions when the decision is announced. The mayor and chief say the violence seen on the city’s streets last summer won’t be tolerated. -WRN

(Madison) The Trump campaign is asking the U.S. Supreme Court to review a state Supreme Court ruling that rejected his attempt to challenge Wisconsin’s election results. President Trump wants the high court to set aside certification of Wisconsin’s presidential electors and have the Republican-controlled state Legislature appoint them. Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani argues election procedures violated the U.S. Constitution. The campaign’s petition targets some 50,000 absentee ballots, including those collected at Madison’s Democracy in the Park events, votes cast by individuals claiming to be indefinitely confined, and those in which clerks filled in missing information on ballot envelopes. Democrat Joe Biden won Wisconsin by some 20,600 votes. The Trump campaign wants an expedited ruling before Congress certifies the electoral votes on January 6th. -WRN

(Madison) The state Assembly appears poised to do its work in person during the upcoming legislative session. Minority Leader Gordon Hintz sent a letter Tuesday asking Republican Speaker Robin Vos to allow lawmakers and support staff to attend committee hearings and floor periods virtually when the two year session begins next month. Vos has said the Assembly can convene safely by following CDC guidelines on social distancing, mask wearing and frequent hand washing. It’s unclear whether state Senate will offer a virtual option. The Republican-controlled legislature has not met since April. -WRN

(Madison) The nation’s longest serving legislator will call it a career next week. After 64 years in the Legislature, Madison Democrat Fred Risser will leave the state Senate next Monday. In addition to being the nation’s longest-serving state or national legislator, Risser is also the last World War II veteran to serve. Risser, who has never lost an election, was elected to the Assembly in 1956. He moved to the state Senate in 1962, where he served a total of 8 years as Minority Leader and 25 years as Senate President. -WRN