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CRIME AND COURT ROUNDUP: Two brothers charged with first-degree murder in Illinois

Two brothers from Manitowoc County are charged with killing a man in central Illinois. 25-year-old James Jacquart of Manitowoc and 22-year-old Alexander Jacquart of Valders are both jailed in DeWitt County under bonds of a million dollars each. They're charged with first-degree murder and armed robbery in the death of 21-year-old Blayne Benefield. The victim's body was found last Saturday morning by a pedestrian in Farmer City Illinois. The Jacquarts work for a traveling amusement company. State's attorney Karl Koritz called the incident a "senseless act of violence," but he did not say how the suspects and the victim were connected. Online court records show that James Jacquart had five previous convictions in Sheboygan and Manitowoc counties over the past six years for theft, criminal damage to property, and negligent handling of burning materials. Alexander Jacquart has had Manitowoc County convictions of theft and receiving stolen property. He also had a child sexual assault charge dropped from 2011, after fulfilling terms of a deferred prosecution agreement.  


A northeast Wisconsin man is expected to reach a settlement today on federal charges that he helped make a cyber-attack on Koch Industries. 37-year-old Eric Rosol of Black Creek has a federal plea hearing scheduled in Kansas, where Koch is headquartered. Prosecutors said Rosol helped the hacker group "Anonymous" jam Koch's Web site with high volumes of automated requests, to the point in which the site shut down in 2011. Rosol was also accused of sending a code which damaged a Koch computer. He indicated in July that he accepted a plea deal, but the details have not come out. Rosol is currently charged with one count of damaging a computer, and a charge of conspiracy to damage a computer. Rosol was indicted by a grand jury in March. A defense lawyer said nothing was hacked, and none of Koch's protected data was lost.


Wausau will soon become the latest Wisconsin city to ban public intoxication. The City Council voted unanimously last night in favor of the ordinance. It's aimed at discouraging people who repeatedly get drunk and cause disturbances in Wausau's downtown "400-Block" park, and the city's Big Bull Falls Park. Those visibly intoxicated in public who cause public nuisances can be fined 150-dollars for their first offense, and 300-dollars plus court costs for subsequent offenses. Police say the new ordinance is the third part of a strategy to ban disruptive people from Wausau city parks. Last month, the city gave police the authority to ban repeatedly disruptive people from parks. Three people have received temporary bans. The second step has police asking judges to order offenders not to return to the parks where they were arrested -- and several such orders have been granted.


The Telemark ski resort near Cable in northwest Wisconsin is officially closed -- again. A Bayfield County judge has declared the property to be abandoned, which could expedite foreclosure proceedings. Mortgage-holder Dick Short tells Wisconsin Public Radio that the resort's title can be cleared of lien-holders, and make the place more attractive to potential buyers. Telemark has had a checkered past since it first opened in 1972. In recent court hearings, it was revealed that the resort has not had electricity or running water since March -- and there's been evidence of looting in the 150-room lodge. Regardless of whether Telemark is sold, Short says the 900-acre property will still be used for next February's American Birkbeiner (birk-by-ner) cross country ski race. The lodge is the starting point for the annual race, which attracts contestants from throughout the world.


Milwaukee will host a meeting of the country's top law enforcement officials. The National Association of Attorneys General will hold its annual presidential summit next Tuesday and Wednesday at Milwaukee's downtown Pfister Hotel. The meeting is normally held in the home state of the group's president -- which for this year is Wisconsin's J-B Van Hollen. Almost 20 attorneys general are expected to attend -- and Van Hollen says they'll learn more about keeping children safe. Topics include school violence, drug abuse, Internet crimes against kids, and child sex trafficking. Officials from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children will speak at the gathering, along with the National Child Protection Training Center.


A 36-year-old man was arrested yesterday after he allegedly stabbed a man in Madison, assaulted a man in Cassville and stole his guns, and took a cattle truck owner hostage before that person escaped in Dodgeville. Authorities said 36-year-old James Kruger of Fall River also stole two vehicles, and he used one of them to lead officers from four counties on a high-speed chase before he was finally stopped. Dane County Sheriff Dave Mahoney said Kruger was captured near Blue Mounds, when the stolen car he was driving hit road spikes set up by deputies and overturned. Kruger managed to get out before the vehicle became engulfed in flames. Mahoney said Highway 18-151 was closed for an hour after the crash, because Kruger might have left an explosive device in the vehicle. Kruger was wanted for stabbing a 48-year-old man in Madison on Monday. He was also wanted for the Grant County assault, gun theft, and hostage incident from yesterday. Also, reports said Kruger was arrested last Wednesday for eluding an officer in Dane County. He was released on a signature bond that day. District Attorney Ismael Ozanne told W-I-S-C T-V his staff assumed that Kruger would be automatically held for violating a previous probation -- but the probation ended in August, and Ozanne said his office quote, "probably made a mistake" in not demanding a cash bond. 


Two people were killed last night in separate shootings in Milwaukee. A 29-year-od man was shot-to-death just before 7:30 p-m in a north side neighborhood. About three hours later, the medical examiner's office said another person was killed almost 30 blocks north of the first incident. Details of the shootings were not immediately released.  

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. 

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