Local News Friday 4/12/13

FDL Man Gets 5 Years For Sexual Assault


A 63-year-old Fond du Lac man convicted of two counts of 3rd degree sexual assault was sentenced this week in Fond du Lac County Court. Judge Gary Sharpe sentenced Robert Burgess Sr. to 5 years in prison and 6 years of extended supervision. Three other sexual assault charges and one count each of possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia charges were read into the record and dismissed. Both cases were filed last year, but in one case the assaults date back to 2008.


Man Who Head Butted FDL Police Officer Gets 4 Years In Prison


The 35-year-old Fond du Lac man who head butted a police officer during a drunken driving arrest has been sentenced for that incident and two others that happened in February and March of last year. Fond du Lac County Judge Peter Grimm this week sentenced Ralph Hertel Jr to 4 years in prison, 5 years of probation and 6 years of extended supervision. Hertel was taken to St. Agnes Hospital for a blood sample following a drunken driving arrest on March 1st of 2012. According to the criminal complaint he caused a disturbance inside the Pick ‘N Save on West Johnson Street while his car was running outside in a fire lane. Later at the hospital he continued to create a disturbance. Officer Curt Beck suffered a swollen lip, cut to his face and headache after being head-butted by Hertel. Hertel was sentenced on battery to a law enforcement officer, felony bail jumping and his 4th drunken driving charge in a 5 year span.


Three Injured In Sheboygan Crash


Three people were hurt in a head-on crash in Sheboygan early yesterday afternoon. Police say all three were treated at a hospital and released. Witnesses told police a 32-year-old man was speeding and driving left of the center line. He fled the scene after running into another vehicle in the opposite lane. Police arrested him at his residence. He was treated at a hospital and arrested for allegedly driving drunk and causing injury. A 28-year-old man was driving the other car that was hit. A 19-year-old woman was a passenger in that car.


Retlaw Obligation Being Paid


Owners of the Retlaw Hotel in Fond du Lac are apparently making payments trying to settle outstanding debt it owes the City for taxes and fees. City Manager Joe Moore told the City Council this week that the City had recently received a $45,000 payment from North Main Hospitality, Inc. He says that brings the stipulated balance due to $51,000. Assistant City Attorney Chad Wade also told the Council that brings the total paid to $136,500 that has been paid since an Alcohol Licensing Committee hearing in January. He says prior to that hearing the owners had paid $160,000. The City Council last month decided not to suspend the liquor license for the historic hotel due to the large debt owed the City. 


Reeseville Man Arraigned On Vehicular Homicide Charge


The 62-year-old Reeseville man suspected of being under the influence of drugs when he hit and killed an elderly Reeseville man with his jeep was recently arraigned in Dodge County Court. Harry Schoephoerster entered “not guilty” pleas to charges stemming from the incident when he was arraigned in Dodge County Court this week. Seventy-nine-year-old Edward Hahn of Reeseville was crossing County Highway G to get his mail. Hahn was in an electric utility cart when he was struck by the jeep driven by Schoephoerster. Hahn died at the scene. Schoephoerster later told investigators he had smoked marijuana the night before the accident.


Community And Agnesian Discuss Possible Affiliation


Community Health Network of Berlin and Agnesian HealthCare in Fond du Lac are discussing the possibility of a formal affiliation between the two healthcare systems. Board of Directors for both healthcare organizations have given full support to continuing conversations necessary to pursue a stronger partnership in the months ahead. Agnesian Healthcare president and chief executive officer Steve Little says it would a win-win situation for both organizations. He says, “By working collaboratively, we can better coordinate care for patients in the CHN service area, providing even more ways for area residents to receive expanded primary and specialty care services.”


FDL City Council Supports Expansion Of Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program


The Fond du Lac City Council this week unanimously passed a resolution supporting a proposal to expand Wisconsin’s historic preservation tax credits program from 5 percent to 20 percent. Lisa Pauly the Chairperson of the City’s Historic Preservation Commission spoke in favor of the program during the Council meeting. She says owners of historic properties don’t get the tax credits until after a historic preservation project is completed. She says historic properties are part of a community’s character and create the possibility of growth for small businesses as well. Pauly says the proposed legislation will allow Wisconsin to compete with adjoining states that have already adopted or are looking to adopt higher supplemental historic tax credit matches.


Party Patrols Start In FDL County This Weekend


With high school proms and graduations coming up law enforcement agencies across Fond du Lac County will be conducting “Party Patrols” to crack down on underage drinking. Drug Free Communities of Fond du Lac County and County law enforcement agencies are working together this year to crack down on underage drinking parties. Over the next four weekends there are proms at 10 area high schools including Horace Mann High School in North Fond du Lac tomorrow. Other prom dates:

April 20th: Campbellsport, Oakfield.

April 27th: St. Marys Springs

May 4th: Fond du Lac, WLA, Ripon, Waupun, Laconia, New Holstein.


FCEDC President Says Economic Development Efforts Can’t Afford To Be Status Quo


Fond du Lac County Economic Development Corporation President Steve Jenkins says no one can afford to settle for the status quo when it comes to economic development efforts. Jenkins says the Fond du Lac area has a heavy concentration of manufacturing jobs, but with newer technologies that won’t always be the case. He says the challenge is to identify what new jobs to attract to the community to maintain a strong workforce. Jenkins says too much effort goes into what’s needed today and not what will be needed five or ten years from now. He says thriving communities manage to meet those challenges.


Fewer Being Offered Health Care Plans


(Wisconsin Radio Network)-Higher costs are translating to fewer employers offering health plans. A study from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation shows the percentage of Wisconsin residents who get their health coverage through their job has dropped from 79 percent in 2000 to 69 percent in 2011. However, many of those residents without coverage will be able to get it through the state exchange when the Affordable Care Act goes into effect next January. Dr. John Lumpkin with East Coast group says the reduction is due to employers not offering health plans. He says places like Wisconsin with a lot of manufacturing are seeing a “drift off” of people able to get health insurance. Still, Wisconsin companies cover about 10-percent more people than the national average of 59-and-a-half percent.


Naked Speeder


A 20-year-old West Bend woman who was speeding in Washington County last week apparently had nothing to hide when she eventually pulled over. In fact she was completely naked. That’s not to say that it was easy to get her to stop. She was first clocked doing 86 miles per hour in a 65 mile per zone. She later got up to 121 miles per hour. The pursuit lasted the better part of 10 miles before she pulled over.  She hadn’t been drinking, but Sheriff’s officials say she may have some mental health issues.