News – May 17, 2019

(Reeseville) A Reeseville man is in stable condition at the UW Hospital in Madison after he was shot in the 400 block of North Main Street in the Village or Reeseville last night. Dodge County Sheriff’s officials say they responded to the shooting shortly after 9:30. Two men had confronted the 26-year-old victim, which led to the shooting. They fled the scene. Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Sheriff’s Department.

(Town of Columbus) The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office has identified the individual killed in a multi-vehicle crash near Columbus on Tuesday. The incident occurred just after 5pm in the northbound lanes of Highway 151, near the Highway 73 overpass. Sheriff Roger Brandner says 38-year-old David Bickel of Mukwonago died from his injuries. The preliminary investigation shows that a Freightliner straight truck failed to reduce speed as it encountered slower moving traffic in a construction zone. In total, ten people were involved, with two escaping injury. The crash remains under investigation by the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office and the Wisconsin State Patrol.

(Madison) Wisconsin is joining several other states in a lawsuit against the company that created OxyContin. Attorney general Josh Kaul says Perdue Pharma and its leader Richard Sackler deliberately misled both the public and doctors about the dangers of opioids like OxyContin in order to push doctors to over prescribe the drug. He says the opioid epidemic has crushed the lives of thousands of Wisconsinites and taxed the social services net of the entire country.

(Beaver Dam) A Beaver Dam woman accused of assaulting a minor is heading to trial after waiving her right to a preliminary hearing yesterday. Jennifer Schmidt allegedly had inappropriate contact with a 15-year-old on multiple occasions in the past couple months. Schmidt at first denied the accusations but later reportedly admitted to her actions. The criminal complaint suggests that Schmidt may be pregnant with the victim’s child. Judge Joseph Sciascia also ordered a competency examination after concerns were raised by Schmidt’s attorney. If convicted, the 49-year-old is facing up to 120 years behind bars.

(Beaver Dam) Officials say a private firm is purchasing Shopko Optical with the possibility of relocating the business to freestanding locations. Monarch Alternative Capital LP announced the purchase Thursday. Russ Steinhorst, Shopko CEO, says they are moving forward with plans to operate 80 freestanding optical locations this year – including Beaver Dam – with further growth expected in 2020 and beyond. A Monarch affiliate is purchasing the optical business for $8.5 million in cash. Shopko is closing all its remaining retail stores by June 16th.

(Beaver Dam) The Nation of Patriots Tenth Annual Patriot Tour will launch from Downtown Beaver Dam tomorrow (Saturday). The motorcycle ride sees one American flag taken to each state in the lower 48. Waukesha-native Bill Sherer started the effort to provide financial support to wounded servicemen and women. Sherer says 100-percent of the $900-thousand dollars raised in the previous nine years has gone to veterans and their families. The opening ceremony gets underway tomorrow at 10am on Front Street. The flag and a procession of hundreds of motorcycles will depart for Fennimore at 11am. On September 7, the flag will return to Beaver Dam’s Swan Park for closing ceremonies.

(Juneau) This week is Lottery Credit Awareness Week and Dodge County Treasurer Patti Hilker is using the occasion to remind citizens of the savings they have had on their real estate tax bills. Last year, the lottery credit in Dodge County was on average $165. The amount of the reduction is based on the school district in which the property is located. To qualify for the Lottery and Gaming Credit, a property owner must be a Wisconsin resident and use the dwelling as their primary residence as of January 1.

(Beaver Dam) Local favorites the Loco Vocals open a three-show run tonight at the Beaver Dam Area Community Theatre’s new downtown Fine Arts Center. The quartet of vocalists, backed by a five-piece bank, will be performing fan favorites from shows over the past ten years. Loco Vocalist Jay Wilkins says the audience will be given ballots that will be tabulated during the first half of the show. The group has dozens of songs in their repertoire from the 1950’s through the 1980’s. The audience can select from artists like Elvis Presley, Van Morrison, Willie Nelson, Dolly Parton, The Eagles, Journey and others.