CRIME AND COURT ROUNDUP: Authorities looking for a driver who killed two pedestrians in Polk County
Authorities in northwest Wisconsin were looking for a pick-up truck driver who killed two pedestrians and kept going. It happened Saturday night on Polk County Trunk "E" in the Round Lake Indian community. Sheriff's officials said the two men were involved in a physical altercation at a nearby home that continued outside on the roadway just before the truck hit them. Investigators were looking for a dark-colored pick-up with mostly frontal damage to the under-carriage. The victims' names were not immediately released.
About 23-thousand customers of the Wisconsin Auto Title Loans' company are expected to get checks next month in the settlement of a state lawsuit. The state Justice Department and Milwaukee's Legal Aid Society accused the company of adding extra costs to title loans, by enrolling borrowers into a motor club. The lawsuit said Wisconsin Auto Title Loans never told certain customers about the enrollment, or else they said it was mandatory. Under a settlement announced in September, the firm put two-and-three-quarter million dollars into a restitution fund for customers who took out loans from 1999-through-2010, and paid back the amounts of their loans or more. To get settlement checks, customers had to confirm their addresses by last November 15th. Auto Title Loans is based in Green Bay and has 22 locations throughout the state.
Officials in Wisconsin's second-largest city will start reviewing applications today for a new police chief. Twenty people applied to replace Madison Chief Noble Wray, including four from within the city's police force. Wray retired last fall after 28 years in the department, his last nine as chief. Acting Police Chief Randy Gaber is not among the candidates for the permanent job. He said it would have taken time away from his family, and he doesn't want that. Also, Gaber built a house just outside Madison last year -- and a city ordinance requires the top officials to live within the city limits.
A fire that destroyed a banquet hall in Oshkosh remains under investigation. Crews were called just before two a-m yesterday to the Timbuktu Bar and Banquet Hall. The bar was open at the time, but nobody was hurt. Officials said a firewall prevented fire damage to the bar area, but it still had smoke and heat damage. The adjacent banquet hall was a total loss. Authorities said icy conditions hindered the fire-fighting efforts, but they had the blaze under control in about three hours.