Closure will last throughout weekend
Walker taking applicants for state Supreme Court justice opening
Is our system of choosing a President rigged? We hear that message, even from some of the candidates. And a new poll suggests that most people agree. A new Reuters...
(AP) Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen wants to make ending child trafficking a priority in the next year. He says he wants to hire five full-time employees, including three special agents and two criminal analysts, who would work to fight child sex trafficking.
In addition, he wants to hold more training for law enforcement, prosecutors, and victim and witness coordinators and to work with lawmakers to draft human trafficking-related legislation. Van Hollen asked for more than $900,000 in his department's two-year budget request.
Gov. Scott Walker's spokesman Cullen Werwie said the governor's office is reviewing it. Van Hollen's spokeswoman Dana Brueck says the department doesn't have statistics on the scope of the problem in Wisconsin. But she says it would naive to think it isn't happening.
Recent State Senate candidate Bill Feehan has launched a campaign for mayor of La Crosse. Feehan was the Republican nominee against Jennifer Shilling in the 32nd District Senate election this fall. He told a group of supporters at the Radisson on Saturday that people have urged him to run for mayor on the April ballot. Feehan lists his top priorities as public safety, economic growth, and reducing property taxes. He believes that his Senate campaign will help him with name recognition in a field of about a dozen candidates for mayor.
(AP) If background checks are any indication, Wisconsin's gun sales seem to be up. Total sales figures for firearms don't exist. But a good yardstick is the number of background checks when a gun is purchased.
The Wisconsin Department of Justice's background check hotline for handgun purchases has handled 60 percent more calls year to date as of Dec. 23 than it did for the same period last year. And the total number of calls this year has far surpassed all of 2011.
There also appeared to be a spike after the Connecticut shooting Dec. 14. State figures show for the week of Dec. 9 to 15, the hotline handled more than 3,700 calls. That number jumped to nearly 6,000 the week after.
A small Wisconsin community near the Minnesota border is paying tribute to the 20 children killed in the Sandy Hook school shooting. Supreme Graphics, based in Arcadia, created a display of photographs of the children and teddy bears and put it in the middle of town.
Company chief executive officer and president Chuck Blaschko says they wanted to do something because they felt so bad about the tragedy.
It went up last week Friday, about 30 minutes before Wisconsin's statewide moment of silence.
If a judge tells a personal story in court, it's not an automatic sign of bias by that judge...
La Crosse County D-A Tim Gruenke makes that argument, in a brief opposing a new sentencing for Jesse Herrmann...serving 30 years in prison for a drunk-driving death. Herrmann claims Judge Ramona Gonzalez was biased against drunk drivers in general, because she talked in court about a drunk driver killing her sister. Gruenke filed a brief last week, arguing that Herrmann hasn't shown that a judge speaking in a comforting way to victims is evidence of bias. Music teacher Theresa Kroes was killed last year, when Herrmann rear-ended the car she was riding in.
A western Wisconsin couple can credit a pet chicken for helping save them from a house fire. Alma Center Fire Chief Jeff Gaede says they were sleeping when the chicken woke them at about 6:15 a.m. Thursday. He says the smoke alarms didn't go off when the fire started in an attic above the attached garage.
He says the chicken and a cat also escaped, but another cat died. Neighbor Brad Krueger says he raised the chicken on his farm until dogs chased it away. The couple then started taking care of it.
Gaede says he's heard of dogs and cats alerting families to fire but he was amazed to hear about the chicken. The fire destroyed the house and the cause is still being investigated.