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CRIME AND COURT ROUNDUP: Fire causes $500K worth of damage to Culver's in Platteville

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Authorities in Platteville continue to investigate a weekend fire that caused at least a half-million dollars in damage to a Culver's restaurant. Police said they were notified early Saturday morning by an alarm company that said a motion detector was tripped. Fire Chief David Izzard said the smoke from the blaze apparently trigged the motion detector. Nobody was in the restaurant at the time. Officials said it took about six hours to get the fire under control, and units kept working to put out hot spots. The chief said the blaze appeared to have started in the restaurant's kitchen.

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Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke wants an investigation into the police response over last week's shooting incident at Children's Hospital in Wauwatosa. Milwaukee Police were told that a wanted felon was visiting his baby. City officers never notified the jurisdictions where the suspect was located until after Ashanti Hendricks ran away from the officers who confronted him, and police shot Hendricks in the wrist in a hospital hallway. The hospital is located in the Milwaukee County Medical Complex, and the county sheriff has jurisdiction there along with Wauwatosa Police. Clarke said he wants his officers to meet with medical complex security personnel, and police from both Milwaukee and 'Tosa, and come up with a critique of the incident within 60 days. Clarke said his deputies were close to the hospital at the time, and never knew a dangerous felon was there. In the sheriff's words, "This is how officers get ambushed or shot in cross-fire situations, unaware that other officers are present on a scene." Clarke said Milwaukee Police Chief Ed Flynn was correct when he said Milwaukee Police had no obligation to contact the county -- but Clarke said it should have been done as a courtesy. Flynn says his department has already started evaluating the incident -- and it could result in policy changes.

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A 23-year-old man was killed in a two-vehicle crash on Highway 29 west of Green Bay. Officials said the victim, from Abrams, was a passenger in a vehicle that crossed the center line and collided head-on with an oncoming vehicle. It happened around 4:30 yesterday morning in Hobart in Brown County. The driver of the first vehicle had serious injuries. The other driver, a 35-year-old man, escaped with minor injuries. Authorities said alcohol might have been a factor.

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A new statue has been unveiled to honor a New Holstein police officer killed in an off-duty traffic crash. Andrew Hoefler died 17 months ago, when his vehicle collided with a car going the wrong way on Highway 57 east of Kiel in Manitowoc County. The other driver survived the crash, which is still being investigated by the State Patrol. The 22-year-old Hoefler had served on the New Holstein Police Department for almost two years when the crash took place. A large crowd looked on yesterday when New Holstein Police officials and the Lakeshore Tech Color Guard held a ceremony at the new statue. Chief Brian Reedy said Hoefler always volunteered to do things. Friends said Hoefler touched a lot of people through his service.

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Stevens Point Police are investigating the death of a man in his 20's, close to the U-W-S-P campus. Police were called to a house late yesterday afternoon. The victim's roommate had just returned from a weekend out-of-town when he found the man dead. Foul play is not suspected. The cause of death has yet to be determined.

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Authorities are investigating the death of a man on Milwaukee's northwest side. The victim was found dead around three this morning. Police have not commented on the circumstances. One report said officers were called to the intersection around 2:20 a-m to investigate an unlawful building entry.

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A person was shot-and-wounded overnight near a bicycle trail in Janesville, and police are looking for the suspect. It happened just after midnight. Police said the suspect met two people, asked them for a ride, and shot one of them. The shooting victim was taken to a Madison hospital for wounds that not reported to be life-threatening.

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Jason Schulte
Jason Schulte has been with the Herald since 2006. He covers County government and anything else that happens in Pierce County on a daily basis.
(715) 273-4334
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