Bookmark and Share

rss logo Top Madison Area Local News Stories

Source: Local News

Police hope picture will help ID owner of found property

Janesville police say some found property may be identifiable based on a photo found with the item, according to a news alert. A Janesville resident found property in a Janesville neighborhood on the north side, officials said. The owner of the property is unknown, but a photo associated with the property may reveal the owners identity. Officials ask anyone who recognizes anyone in the picture to contact Lt. Terry Sheridan at 608-755-3100.

Published: Thu, 27 Nov 2014 01:46:47 GMT

Man finds his lost dog for sale on Craigslist

A 22-year-old Virginia Beach woman was arrested on Sunday after police say she tried to sell a lost dog on Craigslist. The owner of the 3-year-old Siberian Husky named Nikita says she escaped from their yard near Taylor Road in Chesapeake on Saturday morning around 10 a.m. But, just when Nikita's owner started losing hope, he says he found another lead in the search for his beloved pet. "It blew me away. Until now, I would have never thought anyone would do that," Josh King said. Jessica Colleran, 22, of Virginia Beach, is accused of picking up Nikita later that day after she was listed on a "found dog" Craigslist ad. Colleran told the finder of the dog that she was the owner, according to Chesapeake police. King says his good friend Eric Simmons spotted that ad on Craigslist. It was posted by a man who says he found the dog off of Taylor Road. "He said a woman came and claimed her so he gave us all of her information," King explained. But, he says when he later found Collaren's ad on Craiglist listing a Siberian Husky for sale, he put two and two together. He took action and called Colleran pretending to be an interested buyer. He says he agreed to meet her on Sunday in a park in the Cradock area of Portsmouth. What Colleran didn't know is that Portsmouth police and Chesapeake Animal Control would also be there. "She's like no, no the person gave me the dog and she just kept saying that over and over," King described. King says animal control officers were able to scan Nikita for her microchip and verify she belonged to him. "She's had a lot of issues like medically. That's what was freaking me out the most," King said. Colleran was taken into custody and charged with obtaining property under false pretenses. She is currently being held in the Chesapeake Correctional Center.

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 15:34:17 GMT

Wisconsin makes top 5 states most likely to have a miserable Thanksgiving

Ah, Thanksgiving. A time for friends, family and...fighting. Find out where it's likely to be the worst this Turkey Day.

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 19:40:07 GMT

No. 2 Wisconsin easily gets past UAB, 72-43

Frank Kaminsky had 16 points and eight rebounds, Duje Dukan scored 11 points and No. 2 Wisconsin had no trouble beating Alabama-Birmingham 72-43 in the Battle 4 Atlantis quarterfinals Wednesday night. Josh Gasser added 10 points to help the Badgers (5-0) win their 21st straight regular-season nonconference game. Wisconsin held UAB to 35 percent shooting, and is now giving up 46.6 points per game this season. Robert Brown scored 16 points for UAB (2-3), which never led. Brown scored UAB's first 11 points and was the only Blazer to record a field goal in the first 19:59. Brown finished 7 for 15 from the field. The rest of his team: 11 for 36.

Published: Thu, 27 Nov 2014 02:54:53 GMT


Published: Tue, 10 May 2011 13:51:57 GMT

5 Black Friday tips to beat the crowds

Some of the smartest shoppers out there don’t want to actually get out anywhere on Black Friday. Many shoppers, like Southern Savers founder Jenny Martin, will be clicking the day away. “Black Friday is no longer a definite in-store event,” says Martin. “It’s really an online event and so many retailers have already started.” TIP #1: Check to see if your store has already released its deals.  Martin says Target has put up all its Black Friday deals online. Kohl’s has also started.  TIP #2: Amazon will price match every deal and you don’t have to do a thing. “They’re really doing the hunting,” says Martin. “They do this every holiday season—it’s like they refuse to be beaten.” TIP #3: Doorbuster deals are typically a bust. If you’re looking for the 50-inch TV at Best Buy for $199, chances are, there are only a handful in the actual store. Those deals also won’t be online. However, Martin says she’s seeing TV deals for $250 online. It might be worth it to pay a little more and avoid the hassle, unless you’re someone who enjoys that hassle. “Consider what the value of your time is,” advises Martin. TIP #4: Don’t forget the drugstores. For example, this holiday, Walgreens has more than 20 items that are free through its rewards program. Martin found that you could actually get paid for buying deodorant.  Just think of December as personal care month! TIP #5: Learn which stores will price match online retailers. Martin says Target, Toys R Us and Walmart will all price match online stores.  She suggests using her free SouthernSavers app because it can scan an item’s barcode and find the cheapest online price.  Walmart will give you the price match offer right at the register.  Target and Toys R Us will give you the deal at the customer service desk.  Another bonus tip:  If you have a coupon on the item, you can still use it after the price match.  Watch Michelle Li's entire interview with Martin

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 22:14:28 GMT

Ways to prevent 'miserable' Thanksgiving in state ranked 5th worst

A real estate site ranked Wisconsin in the top five states where you are most likely to have a miserable Thanksgiving, based on a wide range of data. According to Centers For Disease Control and Prevention statistics, Wisconsin leads the nation for binge drinking. St. Mary’s Emergency Services Medical Director Kyle Martin said he sees the aftermath of heavy drinking during the holidays in the emergency room, ranging from slips and falls to drunk driving injuries. Martin’s best advice: sip, don’t slam. “Thanksgiving is kind of that classic time when you have a lot of binge drinking,” Martin said. “You get together, you have that long weekend off, you're with friends and family and you're having a good time. I think my most obvious advice is the most basic is: Just to really pace yourself.” Wisconsin also ranked high for the probability of a political argument, coming in 10th overall based on 2012 election results. Licensed counselors Melissa Walden and Jessica Abegglen work with families often and said political differences aren’t usually what bring people into their offices. However, it can be a catalyst for conflict, so they recommend some simple steps to cut down on stress at the table. Cut down on stress at holiday table:Find a quiet space: meditate or calm yourself, take deep breaths, and prepare yourself mentally and physically to go into a family gathering. Make a decision on alcohol: booze can make the tension worse, so know your limits.Know your family dynamics: have strategies ready in case the hot-button topics come up and remember to respect each other’s opinions.Ground yourself: know when to walk away, take a deep breath, then return to the conversation. Remember it’s only one day: whatever is happening will end, so find something to concentrate on to get through the day. “Practice what you're going to say beforehand, so it just kind of comes off the tip of your mouth quicker and you don't feel so on the spot to come up with something,” Abegglen said. Dietary restrictions also make Thanksgiving difficult in some households. The ranking specifically looked at the number of vegetarians and how many cases of diabetes were diagnosed in each state. Wisconsin came in 11th in the nation. Mary Ann Merrick, a dietician at St. Mary’s Hospital, recommends making a meal so that everyone can enjoy it instead of singling out those with restrictions. “You've got to plan, you know, you really need to plan a little bit more instead of jumping right in,” Merrick said. Merrick said making minor modifications to Grandma’s unhealthy recipes can go a long way. She also encourages people to exercise together before or after the big meal. “Get in a little more extra exercise. Get that dog outside too. Get the whole family, the whole entire family, all of your friends and family, and get walking, get moving because that will burn off calories,” Merrick said. “A lot of people gain up to five pounds around the holidays. That's a lot of weight gain, and we do have high incidence of obesity in the state of Wisconsin.” The ratings say the “most miserable” state for Thanksgiving is Ohio.

Published: Thu, 27 Nov 2014 15:37:35 GMT

Police: Women scream, yell, throw flower pots during disturbance

A Madison woman will be cited for disorderly conduct for her involvement in a fight with another woman on the east side early Wednesday morning, police said. Madison police were sent to the 5000 block of Camden Road just before 1 a.m. for reports of a disturbance possibly involving a gun, according to a release. Officers arrived and said the gun may have been taken from the scene, officials said. Officers on the way to the scene found a blue vehicle a short distance away that matched the description of a potential suspect vehicle, according to the release. Police spoke with Daviette Dykinga, 32, of Madison, who said she was inside the Camden Road apartment, officials said. Dykinga said she was abruptly woken up and told she needed to leave immediately by the 48-year-old female resident. Dykinga told police she tried to leave, but discovered that her keys and money had been taken from her purse. Dykinga got into an argument with the 48-year-old woman, during which shirt collars were grabbed and a television and table were knocked over, according to the release. Several people told police Dykinga was screaming and yelling expletives as the 48-year-old continued to tell her to leave. Officers at the scene found several flower pots and plants that had been thrown down the stairwell landing at the residences, authorities said. Dykinga eventually left, kicking several walls on her way out, according to the release. Dykinga will be cited for disorderly conduct, police said. After talking with Rory McDowell, 38, of Madison, during the incident, police discovered numerous warrants for his arrest, and he was taken into custody on those charges. McDowell was wanted on charges of criminal damage to property, disorderly conduct and unlawful use of a telephone. Police said no weapon was found during the investigation.

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 23:44:19 GMT

Wis. law enforcement agencies look into using drones

Small pieces of plastic with a small motor and camera, weighing less than five pounds, seem poised to become a valuable and affordable tool for law enforcement. Small drones, or unmanned aerial vehicles, are being looked at closely by several jurisdictions in Wisconsin. “There have been multiple agencies who have expressed interest in it. I think they are all kind of looking at each other thinking, 'Who’s going to be the first one to dive into it?'” said Brian Landers, chair of the Criminal Justice Department at Madison College. In preparation for the use of drones in Wisconsin, Madison College has developed a training program offered to law enforcement agencies. The program will train police and firefighters on how to fly the unmanned aerial vehicles, as well as on the legal and ethical limits. The primary uses of the unmanned aerial vehicles are for assisting in search and rescue operations, tactical situations, crime and accident scene photography and fire scene assessment. “By having the ability to get eyes on something, either a building or an incident from a distance, from a safe distance that can mean life and death for the police officer or the people that are involved,” Landers said. “It brings a lot. It brings safety number one and not only to law enforcement officers but also to the people they serve.” While the unmanned aerial vehicles have the potential to save lives they could also save taxpayers a great deal of money. An unmanned aerial vehicle will cost a police or fire department approximately $1,300. “If you go to a large metropolitan agency an unmanned aerial vehicle can easily replace a multi-million dollar helicopter,” Landers said. Law enforcement agencies in Wisconsin have the ability to use unmanned aerial vehicles under Senate Bill 196, which was passed last year. The legislation requires law enforcement agencies to obtain a search warrant prior to using the device for collection of evidence. The bill does provide exceptions to allow use of an unmanned aerial vehicle for active search-and-rescue operations to locate an escaped prisoner or in an emergency to prevent imminent danger to an individual or imminent destruction of evidence. “Police officers are not going to be trained to fly over neighborhoods and just randomly look for things,” Landers said. While the law requires law enforcement agencies to obtain a search warrant to search for evidence, except in certain situations, critics are concerned the law is written broadly enough to cause problems. “Unfortunately, here in Wisconsin the law that was passed by the legislature this past session is very weak in our minds,” said Chris Ahmuty, executive director of the ACLU of Wisconsin. “We need to have some guidelines that will protect American values like privacy and freedom from unreasonable search and seizure.” Ahmuty believes that because of the way the law is written it will eventually be challenged in court. “I’m sure it will be. You can bet your bottom dollar,” Ahmuty said. Concerns about the proper use of the unmanned aerial vehicles have weighed heavily in the policies Madison College has developed for training. “There’s a concern about the public perception and that’s a concern by Madison College as well, and that is why we feel the need to provide the safe and ethical training on the devices and where it cannot be used,” Landers said.

Published: Thu, 27 Nov 2014 03:02:31 GMT

Untreated wastewater discharges into low-lying areas on north side

Approximately 500,000 gallons of untreated wastewater was intermittently discharged over a 25-hour period on Madison’s north side last week, according to a release. The Madison Metropolitan Sewerage District said during the relining of one of its interceptor sewers near Golf Parkway, officials said. During the relining, untreated wastewater was diverted around the relining area, according to the release. MMSD’s contractor had three pumps on site to divert the wastewater, which included two back-up pumps. On Nov. 16, the primary pump and the two backup pumps failed, officials said. When the pumps failed, a temporary discharge of wastewater went to nearby low-lying areas and ditches. The Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources was notified of the spill, according to the release. Officials said the pump failure has been corrected, and appropriate remedial actions have been taken.

Published: Thu, 27 Nov 2014 01:36:47 GMT

Dispute over 9-point buck settled with coin flip

A dispute over a nine-point buck was settled with a coin flip on Wisconsin's deer season opener. The season was just a couple hours old when D.J. Jorgenson said his 11-year-old son, Kameron, wounded the buck in the Town of Oneida. He told WLUK-TV they tracked it to a neighbor's property. Neighbor Randy Heyrman shot twice from his stand to finish off the buck. With the deer dead and the hunters deadlocked over who could keep it, they agreed to flip a coin. Kameron called tails. It came up heads. So Heryman claimed the buck. All Kameron got was a photo. Shad Webster of the Oneida Conservation Department said hunters need permission to follow a deer onto private property, and the landowner has a right to take the deer.

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 15:27:11 GMT

Janesville residents could face bumpy drives without added funds

Janesville’s public works officials say some of the city’s roads are at risk of falling into failing condition and without necessary funding it will be hard to find a fix. City officials said if more money is not put into street repairs, drivers will be in for a bumpy ride. “I don’t believe the referendum means that people don’t want the roads fixed, but they want us to go about it a different way or come back with a better-worded referendum,” said Sam Liebert, Janesville City Council president. After a November referendum for $1.2 million to cover the cost of repairing Janesville roads failed, fixing those roads might be more difficult. “Our hands are essentially tied. It’s either referendum or borrow or don’t fix the roads. Those are the three options,” Liebert said. The city needs an additional $1.2 million a year to cover the cost of doubling their current street repairs to 12 miles a year to keep up with the city’s 331 miles of roadways. But the city doesn’t have that money in its budget. “The city is under a lot of fiscal constraints at this time,” said Max Gagin, assistant to the city manager. “The state distributes shared revenue and the city of Janesville receives one of the least amounts. We are the third lowest of 15 peer communities. So some constraints in our budget are really related to the property tax as well as the lack of shared revenue coming from the state.” The city council approved spending $800,000 in borrowed money to repair an additional three miles of roads. They are looking at increasing the current $10 wheel tax. “The thing I like about that tax is that we are users of the people. The people that use the vehicles on the road pay part of that cost of the streets,” said Jim Farrell, a city council member. The Janesville City Council will meet in January to discuss all of the possible options on how to pay for current and future road repairs that will be needed within the city.

Published: Thu, 27 Nov 2014 03:55:10 GMT

Names released in fatal head-on crash in Onalaska

The La Crosse County Sheriff's Department released the names of the three people who died in a head-on crash in Onalaska Tuesday night. Lacey J. Daily, 23, of Onalaska; Mary Lu Dolbee, 87, of Holmen; Karen Dolbee, 60, of Holmen, died in the crash. There were no other serious injuries. The Sheriff's Department said the crash happened after a vehicle traveling northbound on Highway 35 crossed the center line and struck the back quarter panel of a pick-up truck southbound on Highway 35. After the vehicle struck the truck, the northbound vehicle hit a second vehicle traveling south head-on. The driver and passenger of the second southbound vehicle were killed. The driver of the northbound vehicle was also killed. The people in the truck were not injured. Highway 35 was shut down for five hours after the crash. It opened back up to traffic around 11:45 p.m. Tuesday. The La Crosse County Sheriff's Department and the Wisconsin State Patrol are still investigating the crash.

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 21:55:35 GMT

Planes, trains, automobiles feel-stress of holiday travel

The words on the flight board at Dane County Regional Airport tell the tale of a winter storm a thousand miles away. Flights originating in or departing to airports in the Northeast carried information about delayed flight times or, in a few instances, cancellations. “Anytime there are lots of delays or cancellations, people get stressed, but I’d say that gets magnified when people really have to be somewhere,” said Brent McHenry, spokesperson for the Dane County Regional Airport. The day before Thanksgiving is traditionally one of the busiest travel days at the airport. In preparation the airport adds staff and makes contingency plans. What it can’t plan for is a storm a thousand miles away. While stress abounds at airports on the day before Thanksgiving, there is one small corner of the Dane County Regional Airport that is stress-free. It is the spot where Donna Vought’s massage chair sits. "I see shoulders. A lot of us wear our shoulders as earrings when we’re stressed,” Vought said. The licensed massage therapist helps to remove the stress of travelers in whatever time they have between flights. “It will definitely drop the tension levels in the muscles, which will in turn reduce stress,” Vought said. That is something Kevin Wolfe quickly discovered after a few minutes in the massage chair. “It does take the edge off actually. I didn’t think I would really need this, but it feels really good, and I feel much looser and more relaxed," he said. The storm on the East Coast is also expected to cause problems for drivers on Interstate 95, which runs along the coast. Because of that, Amtrak reports heavy volume for the holiday week.

Published: Thu, 27 Nov 2014 02:01:25 GMT

Officials ID 2 killed when vehicle goes into other lane of traffic

Two people were killed in a two-vehicle crash in Columbia County Monday afternoon, deputies said. Around 2:40 p.m. Columbia County emergency officials received a report of a two-vehicle crash on Highway 22 at County Highway EE in the town of Marcellon, according to a release. Eldon H. Himsel, 81, of rural Montello, was driving a car north when he lost control and the car went into the southbound lane, where it was hit by a pickup truck pulling a trailer, investigators said. Himsel and his passenger, who has been identified as his wife, Beverley J. Himsel, 82, of rural Montello, were pronounced dead at the scene, according to the release. The driver of the truck was not injured. The Columbia County Sheriff’s Office was assisted at the scene by the Columbia County medical examiner, Pardeeville Fire Department, Pardeeville EMS and Blystones Towing.

Published: Tue, 25 Nov 2014 21:50:34 GMT

City files lawsuit against state over mental health rule

The city of Madison is filing a lawsuit against the State Department of Health over its decision earlier this year to force local police departments to take adult male emergency mental health patients to Winnebago Mental Health Institute instead of Mendota Mental Health. The decision means officers need to spend their entire shift transporting patients. “To the extent they have any family or any other support groups in the area, it’s nearby as opposed to having them several hours away, where none of that is available, so it’s not just a strain on the city’s resources,” Madison City Attorney Mike May said. “It’s also what’s best for the individual.” The city claims state law requires Mendota Mental Health to accept patients. May said the city tried to reach out to the state to resolve the situation amicably, but they haven’t received any response from the state, so now the courts will be asked to decide.

Published: Thu, 27 Nov 2014 00:18:11 GMT

Why Black Friday deals aren't really deals

If you're experiencing déjà vu this Black Friday, there's a reason: Retailers are repeating products and prices from last year. A whopping 93% of stores surveyed are offering customers year-old products for the same "discount" that was offered last year, according to a recent study from NerdWallet. While that may not be a huge issue for things like furniture and cookware, it does matter when it comes to tech and electronics that can be outdated or of poorer quality. "It's probably not worth waking up very early for," said Matthew Ong, an analyst at NerdWallet. It's not just the repeats that customers should be watching out for. Ong said that major retailers, like Walmart and Target, have special products, like TVs or other electronics, manufactured especially for Black Friday. The prices are great, but the items are of lower quality. "If you're fine buying a TV that won't last until next year's Black Friday, I guess that's ok," Ong said. The study analyzed 27 Black Friday advertisements, and found that 25 retailers listed at least one product for the same price in 2014 as in 2013. Office Depot, for example, offered the same wireless laser printer this year and last year, at the same $349.97 price point. Target, Walgreens and PetSmart also made the list of repeat offenders, along with many others. The study also found that Black Friday discounts are offered at the exact same price at other times throughout the year. So how do you land the best Black Friday deals? The way to be smart about shopping, Ong said, is to do the homework -- research deals and be strategic before the day arrives. He said that good deals or specials can be found on Twitter or Facebook, as retailers push for engagement and try to be a shopper's first choice for Black Friday deal hunting. "Stores are going to be crazy," Ong said. "Make sure you have self control, and plan ahead to make sure you don't overspend."

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 15:35:56 GMT

Goodman Community Center able to meet Thanksgiving goal

After concerns over being able to provide a Thanksgiving meal for 3,000 area families in need, the Goodman Community Center’s executive director is happy to credit the community for helping them meet their goal. "Today is great news," Becky Steinhoff said. "We provided to all 3,000 families who were on our list." Even late last week, the Goodman Community Center’s Fritz Food Pantry only had 2,100 turkeys. Thanks to the generosity of neighbors, more than 1,000 turkeys were donated over the last few days. "It’s probably 15,000-20,000 people who’ll eat this Thanksgiving thanks to the generosity of our community. That’s a lot of people," Steinhoff said. With more than 100 extra turkeys, the Fritz Food Pantry has been able to also provide anyone who called-in or walked-in part of their meal. "The Thanksgiving basket process is one of my favorite things that goes on at the center," Steinhoff said. "The project itself and giving out 3,000 baskets. But even more so, is the incredible outpouring of generosity from a broad spectrum of our community."

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 23:47:30 GMT

House fire started by child playing with lighter, officials say

Investigators believe a Beloit house fire Wednesday was started by a child playing with a lighter, according to a release. The Beloit Fire Department responded to reports of a structure fire at 510 Froebel Street just before 11 a.m., officials said. Crews said there was smoke and flames showing from the west side of the home when they go to there. The fire was extinguished after crews confirmed all occupants were out of the building, according to the release. The fire was confined to a bedroom, but there was smoke damage in the kitchen and living room. Investigators said the child playing with a lighter started a mattress on fire. No injuries were reported, according to the release. Damage is estimated at $5,000.

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 23:10:23 GMT

Beer makers go (mostly) bare for men's health

A group of brewers in the Sheboygan area is posing mostly nude for a calendar aimed at raising money for charity. Unsurprisingly, the idea came about when they were enjoying a few beers. Kurt Jensen, owner of 8th Street Ale Haus, said after talking to some of his brewing buddies about doing charity work, they eventually came up with something similar to a swimsuit calendar. The 2015 Brew Men Calendar features brewing professionals from 3 Sheeps Brewing, 8th Street Ale Haus and Plymouth Brewing Co. Proceeds from calendar sales will be donated to the Movember Foundation, a non-profit organization focused on men's health issues, including prostate and testicular cancer. Grant Pauly, founder of 3 Sheeps, told Sheboygan Press Media he hopes the calendars will also raise awareness.

Published: Wed, 26 Nov 2014 19:22:30 GMT