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STATE NEWS ROUNDUP: Holmen sixth grader has worn a Rodgers jersey every day for nearly three years

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A sixth-grader near La Crosse has worn the same Aaron Rodgers jersey every day for almost three years. David Pehl of Holmen is trying to wear his shirt longer than a Connecticut boy who wore a Brett Favre jersey for almost four-and-a-half years. Pehl must wear his green-and-gold Rodgers shirt for 547 more days before he can break the mark set by David Witthopf from 2003-to-'08. David said he just couldn't stop wearing the jersey given to him for Christmas. He's had it on for one-thousand-35 days. David's father tells WKBT TV in La Crosse that he put the idea into his son's head by mentioning the Connecticut youngster. David's shirt is hand-washed every other day. The green faded a while back, and the Rodgers name can barely be read. Still, Pehl is determined to surpass Witthoff's record of 15-hundred-81 days -- which ended after the boy grew out of his Favre shirt, and it barely got down to his belt-line.  

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A Madison man who faces 62 state sex charges has pleaded guilty in a separate federal case. 28-year-old Brian Stowe is scheduled to be sentenced in January, after he admitted taking sexually-explicit photos of a 17-year-old girl after she fell asleep. Federal Judge Barbara Crabb convicted him of child sexual exploitation. In state court, Stowe faces 62 felony charges for allegedly drugging women, and then molesting them and shooting nude videos after they passed out. The charges could be whittled down in a plea deal that reportedly has been made. He's due to appear in Dane County Circuit Court in that case on November 13th.

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A man suspected of committing up to 30 armed robberies and other crimes in Madison has been arrested in Illinois. Interim Police Chief Randy Gaber said his officers have a lot of investigative work to do, and they're looking for other suspects who might have been involved. Most of the incidents took place in two neighborhoods close to Madison's downtown and the U-W campus. Wallets, I-Phones, and small electronics were among the items stolen. The latest robbery happened on Wednesday in a man's home just off the downtown area. A U-W student told WISC T-V that the victim was into his house, left the door unlocked, and followed the man to his bathroom where the robber said "Give me your phone and your wallet." None of the incidents took place on U-W property, but campus Police Chief Susan Riseling is still encouraging students to be vigilant and pay attention to their surroundings.

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A 33-year-old man has been ordered to stand trial for a violent effort to kill his girlfriend in Plover. Jason Hyatt is scheduled to enter pleas on Monday in Portage County to eight felony charges that include attempted homicide, kidnapping, false imprisonment, reckless endangerment, stalking, and aggravated battery. At a preliminary hearing yesterday, a police officer quoted the 31-year-old girlfriend as saying she was hit 60 times in the head with a baseball bat on October 6th. She told investigators that Hyatt ambushed her after she came home from a bar with a friend, and started hitting her. He then allegedly tied up the victim, and tried feeding her sleeping pills which he spat out. The woman said Hyatt tried apologizing, but then tied her to a bed and refused to take her to a hospital. She managed to get away after he fell asleep, and called police. Hyatt remains in jail under a quarter-million dollar bond. His address is listed as unknown. Online court records indicate that he was living in Madison when he was charged in Fond du Lac County with a fifth-or-sixth-time drunk driving felony, and driving with a revoked license. That case continues.

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A pregnant woman is challenging Wisconsin's 15-year-old fetal protection law, which allows severe drug users to be detained to protect their unborn babies. The New York Times first reported on the case of Alicia Beltran of Jackson, after a pregnant women's advocacy group from the Big Apple filed suit on her behalf. The lawsuit was filed in federal court in late September, claiming that the 28-year-old Beltran had her civil rights violated -- and that the fetal protection law is unconstitutional. The lawsuit said Beltran was arrested and sent to an Appleton treatment facility, after she told medical personnel that she overcame an addiction to painkillers. She insisted she was no longer on drugs -- and she claimed that the center confined her for over two months, despite passing a drug test. The Times said Beltran was released from the treatment center this month, after the lawsuit was filed. Lynn Paltrow of the National Advocates for Pregnant Women said it's the first civil rights challenge to a law that quote, "explicitly says the state can control adult women because they're pregnant." Susan Armacost of Wisconsin Right-to-Life says her group agrees that the fetal protection law is good, even though she could not speak to Beltran's case.

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The nation's largest organic food cooperative is getting more help with an expansion project in western Wisconsin. Governor Scott Walker said yesterday that the state would kick in one-point-four million dollars for road work at the Organic Valley facility. The farmer-owned co-op is spending 25-million dollars to build new headquarters and an expanded distribution center at Cashton in Monroe County. Walker says the project will add close to 340 new jobs at Organic Valley, and will indirectly support another 360 jobs. Organic Valley is the nation's largest handler of organic milk. It also distributes organic meat, eggs, and juice. The state grant will help Cashton pay for about three-point-two-million dollars in road amenities.  

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Halloween is six days away, but many Wisconsin communities will hold their trick-or-treating hours this weekend so kids can go out when there's daylight. Local authorities are putting out their usual safety notices. Once again this year, state probation-and-parole agents will be on the prowl for high-risk sex offenders who open their homes to young kids in violation of their releases. Marathon County sheriff's lieutenant Mark Wagers says parents need to be watchful of their young ghosts and goblins both during and after their travels. He says there's greater safety in numbers -- especially in rural areas -- and kids need to travel together, escorted by older teens or adults. If it's dark, they'll need reflective gear -- and the escorts should make sure they follow all traffic laws. Back home, Wagers says parents need to check the candy and make sure their kids don't eat treats that will give them food allergies. Wagers also warned against vandalism, saying that citations and arrests will be made according to how severe the violations are.

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Today is Domestic Violence Awareness Day. In Wisconsin, there's a lot of focus on Wausau area native Kira Steger, and whether she could have avoided being murdered in Minnesota by her husband Jeffrey Trevino. He was convicted earlier this month, upset that she was seeing another man. It was never made clear whether Steger feared for her safety before she was beaten-and-smothered to death -- or if she sought help before getting divorce papers that were found in her vehicle when she disappeared in February. Jane Graham-Jennings of the Women's Community in Wausau says part of Steger's legacy is encouraging other women in her situation to get help -- to not live in pain, and recognize there are ways to better themselves. Graham-Jennings says domestic violence escalates. Eighty-five percent of killings take place after a victim leaves an abuse partner or threatens to leave. Graham-Jennings heads an agency which provides resources and shelter for abused women. A family friend made a bench in Steger's honor and presented it to the Women's Community. Steger's funeral is tomorrow in Rothschild. Her body was found in May, but her family could not bring her home until after Jeffrey Trevino's recent trial.

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A man arrested in Madison for killing an elderly woman in South Dakota will not escape a possible death penalty. Public defender Traci Smith told the judge yesterday that her office will be too busy with other clients to give James McVay adequate counsel for his sentencing hearing in March. For that reason, Smith asked that the death penalty not be ordered. Judge Peter Liebermann said a heavy defense workload is no excuse -- and if the death penalty is justified, it will be imposed. The judge also said McVay received a "first rate defense" as he pleaded guilty but mentally ill to killing 75-year-old Maybelle Schein in Sioux Falls in 2011. He also stole her car -- and when he was arrested in Madison, he told police and a T-V interviewer he was driving to Washington to assassinate President Obama. McVay's lawyer wanted to hide those comments from his sentencing jury -- but the judge ruled on Wednesday that the jury can hear them. 

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Jason Schulte
Jason Schulte is a reporter for the New Richmond News since February 2015. Prior to that he spent eight years at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth. His duties with the News will include covering news out of Hammond and Roberts along with action from St. Croix County court system. He lives in Roberts with his wife and two daughters. 
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