News

Fri
10
Mar

Appeals court overturns local robbery conviction

A state appeals court Thursday reversed a Shawano man’s bank robbery conviction because the judge did not ask at the plea hearing if he knew he was entitled to a unanimous jury verdict.

Darrin H. Church, 52, was sentenced in July 2014 to five years in prison and another 10 years extended supervision.

Church had pleaded no contest to charges of using the threat of force to rob the CoVantage Credit Union at 911 E. Green Bay St. and attempting to rob Cash Tyme at 705 E. Green Bay St., in April 2013.

The District IV Court of Appeals reversed Church’s convictions on those charges, as well as bail jumping and other misdemeanors.

Circuit Judge William Kussel Jr. conducted an otherwise exemplary plea colloquy, or dialogue, according to the District IV Court of Appeals, but not asking Church about his right to unanimous verdict constitutes a defect, the court ruled.

Fri
10
Mar

Questions getting more focused as park referendum nears


Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Additional seating and other improvements are planned for Smalley Park along the Wolf River. It is one of the parks that could be affected by an advisory referendum on the ballot in Shawano on April 4.

Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Located on the site of a former school in Shawano, Franklin Park is starting to take shape. The continued development of the park could depend on how residents vote in an advisory referendum April 4.

As the April 4 referendum on borrowing for city park improvements in Shawano gets closer, interest appears to be growing and questions about the proposal are getting more specific, according to Shawano Park and Recreation Director Matt Hendricks.

The city saw its largest turnout yet for a series of informational meetings on the referendum Tuesday when 15 people showed up. Only three attended the last one.

Hendricks has also been meeting with community groups and civic organizations to make presentations and reach more people.

There has also been a lot of chatter online where the city has posted informational videos about what’s included in the proposal.

Hendricks’ efforts have also been assisted by groups that have put out fliers encouraging a yes vote.

There will be one more public hearing on the proposal at 6 p.m. Wednesday at City Hall, 127 S. Sawyer St.

Fri
10
Mar

Harter’s takes over Clintonville garbage services June 1

Beginning June 1, Harter’s Fox Valley Disposal will be the only company providing garbage and recycling services in the city of Clintonville.

The Common Council last month approved moving to a single waste hauler to limit damage to the city streets caused by multiple garbage trucks and to save residents money through a competitive bid process.

The other haulers currently operating in the city (Waste Management, Advanced Disposal and Graichen) will no longer be licensed by the city.

Under the city’s contract with Harter’s, residents will be charged $9.50 per month ($114 per year) for refuse and recycling collection/disposal.

For 2017, each residential customer will be invoiced $66.50 for seven months of service. For 2018, the annual cost will be placed directly on the property tax bill.

Fri
10
Mar

Wittenberg man arrested in computer sex sting

Shawano County authorities arrested a 49-year-old Wittenberg man Thursday for allegedly using a computer to facilitate a child sex crime.

The man was taken into custody shortly before 1 p.m. in the town of Belle Plaine, where he had allegedly arranged a sexual rendezvous with what he believed was going to be a 15-year-old girl.

Charges were not expected to be filed before Monday. The Leader does not publish the names of individuals who have not been charged.

His arrest brings to 51 the number of men arrested by Shawano County authorities in online sex sting operations over the last three years, according to sheriff’s department records.

All of the cases stemmed from Shawano County sheriff’s detectives posing online as underage girls, and sometimes boys, as part of the Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force.

Fri
10
Mar

Public Record

Shawano Police Department

March 8

Police logged 26 incidents, including the following:

Theft — An iPad was reported stolen at Walmart, 1244 E. Green Bay St.

Weather — Police logged nine incidents of debris in the road and utility problems caused by high winds.

Shawano County Sheriff’s Department

March 8

Deputies logged 40 incidents, including the following:

Probation Violation — A 29-year-old man was arrested for a probation violation on Airport Drive in the town of Wescott.

Auto Theft — A vehicle was reported stolen on Kolpack Road in the town of Aniwa.

OAR — A 24-year-old woman was cited for operating after revocation on state Highway 29 in the town of Hartland.

OWL — A 23-year-old man was cited for operating without a license on East Green Bay Street in Shawano.

Thu
09
Mar

Strong winds topple trees, knock out power


Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski A tree lies near the road on Lake Drive in the town of Wescott near Mielke Park. Other trees in the area fell on power lines and caused outages throughout the county.

Leader Photo by Lee Pulaski Many signs such as this one at Badger’s Best Furniture on North Main Street in Shawano were knocked over Wednesday due to the high winds.

Two days of high winds kept authorities and area work crews busy cleaning up debris and addressing utility problems throughout Shawano County this week.

The National Weather Service clocked the winds at 25-35 mph with gusts sometimes blowing past the 50 mph mark.

At least two county fires were blamed on power lines downed by the winds.

“The winds are causing issues with all kinds of things,” Sheriff’s Department Capt. Tom Tuma said.

The department logged 15 reports of debris in the road or utility problems Tuesday, followed by another 17 reports between midnight and 3 p.m. Wednesday.

Issues ranged from fallen limbs and branches to entire trees blocking roadways. Fallen power lines on Tuesday started a ditch fire and set fire to two trees, according to the daily sheriff’s report.

Even heavier winds blew in on Wednesday.

“It’s worse today than yesterday,” said Eddie Sheppard, Shawano Public Works coordinator.

Thu
09
Mar

Bonduel getting word out on school referendum

A half-dozen Bonduel School District residents attended an information meeting about the referendum on the April 4 ballot Monday at the high school, but Administrator Patrick Rau is not worried about the low turnout.

The district has been going to the people instead of waiting for them to come to scheduled meetings.

Rau said presentations about the need for the referendum have been made to the Cecil Village Board and Washington Town Board, along with the Cecil Fire Department, Bonduel Lions Club and other civic groups.

On April 4, residents will be asked to increase the district’s tax rate by $1.80 per $1,000 of equalized valuation, up from the current $9.55, in a measure that would give the district up to $1 million annually for the next three years. If the proposal is approved, property owners would pay an additional $180 annually for a property valued at $100,000.

Thu
09
Mar

City hires contractor for street reconstruction projects

City officials Wednesday awarded bids for street and utility reconstruction projects that came in at significantly less than expected.

The Common Council approved the bid from Dorner Inc. of Luxemburg in the amount of $2.18 million.

Eight companies competed for this year’s street reconstruction projects, with the highest bid coming in at nearly $2.6 million, which was closer to expectations budgeted in this year’s capital improvement projects.

“We’re very happy with the bids the way they came in,” said Eddie Sheppard, city public works coordinator.

Thu
09
Mar

UW-Extension schedules farm succession workshop

The University of Wisconsin-Extension in Marinette, Oconto and Shawano Counties is offering a farm succession workshop from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. March 22 at Premier Community Bank, 745 State Highway 32, in Pulaski.

It is estimated approximately 51 percent of Wisconsin farmers are over the age of 55 and more than 22 percent are over the age of 65. Proper planning is essential to develop an effective strategy to transfer their farms to the next generation, taking into consideration financial, legal, tax and estate issues.

Thu
09
Mar

Deadline nears for crop insurance decisions

Farmers have until March 15 to review which USDA crop risk protection options, including federal crop insurance and the Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program, they need for spring-seeded crops.

Federal crop insurance covers crop losses from natural adversities such as drought, hail and excessive moisture.

NAP covers losses from natural disasters on crops for which no permanent federal crop insurance program is available, including forage and grazing crops, fruits, vegetables, mushrooms, floriculture, ornamental nursery, aquaculture, turf grass, ginseng, honey, syrup, bioenergy and industrial crops.

The March 15 deadline applies to the following crops in Shawano andMenominee counties: sorghum forage, herbs, pumpkins, and most annual fruits and vegetables.

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