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WISCONSIN NEWS ROUNDUP: DA says he'd be shocked if any clerk would face charges over issuing same-sex marriage licenses

A prosecutor says he'd be shocked if any Wisconsin county clerk faces criminal charges for issuing same-sex marriage licenses over the past week.  Portage County D-A Louis Molepske (mo-lepp'-skee) Junior said the state would have to prove that a clerk intended to break the law.  He doesn't believe that even a minor misdemeanor would stick, after Federal Judge Barbara Crabb refused to tell counties how to respond to her initial ruling ten days ago that the state's gay marriage ban is unconstitutional.  Crabb put the ruling on hold this past Friday, so same-sex marriages are again illegal -- at least until the U-S Supreme Court takes up the subject.  That's expected to happen in the coming year.  Wisconsin Attorney General J-B Van Hollen contended that the state's gay marriage ban remained in place even after Crabb's initial ruling.  Last Thursday, he said local prosecutors could charge the 60 county clerks that gave out over 550 same-sex marriage licenses statewide.  But Van Hollen backed off from his remark, a day after it created a firestorm.  Molepske is from one of the 12 counties that did not issue same-sex marriage licenses.  But even if it did, he said he wouldn't prosecute his county clerk for it.  He said it would not have merit, and D-A's have more serious cases to handle.


Severe weather is possible in Wisconsin from tonight through at least Wednesday -- and the state just might get its first tornado of the year.  This is the sixth-latest since 1950 that Wisconsin has not had a twister in a calendar year.  The National Weather Service said the latest start to a tornado season was in 1995, when a twister did not touch down until June 28th near La Crosse.  This year moved became the sixth-latest at four p-m yesterday, when it moved past 1983.  That was when the first twister from that year hit at Campbellsport in Fond du Lac County.  Short-range forecasts from the National Weather Service indicate that this week's severe weather will consist mainly of heavy rains, hail, and strong winds.  The Weather Service office in La Crosse mentions the possibility of tornadoes tonight, but they're most likely to stay on the Minnesota side of the Mississippi River.  You can expect a clear to partly cloudy day today, with highs in the 80's.  Thunderstorms will then become a possibility from tonight through the rest of the week. 


It was not a happy Father's Day Weekend for a man who flew his son to his high school graduation in an ultra-light aircraft.  W-T-M-J T-V said hundreds of people were stunned to see the aircraft land on the front lawn of Sussex Hamilton High School just before the school's commencement on Saturday.  Parent Alan Larson said he saw the ultra-light circle, and then land close to where people were walking in.  The pilot said he was given a citation from the Waukesha County sheriff's department, but he wouldn't say anything else.  The man and his son flew away after the ceremony.  


Thunderstorms and high waters kept thousands of people away from an annual Father's Day inner tube event on the Chippewa River in Chippewa Falls.  The Frenchtown Annual Tube Float and Regatta -- FATFAR for short -- has attracted up to ten-thousand participants during its 40-year history.  Yesterday, organizers told the Chippewa Herald the crowd would only be around one-thousand.  That's after more than three-inches of rain fell in the region late Saturday and early yesterday -- and law enforcement warned that participants might drown on river currents that got high, faster, and choppier.  Also, tubers got scared off after word of a nearby house fire apparently caused by a lightning strike.  That happened close to six a-m yesterday in Lake Hallie.  Owner Joshua Ranney told fire-fighters that loud thunder woke him up -- and about three hours later, he had his family evacuate after seeing an orange glow through a light fixture in his bathroom.


Take-and-bake pizza lovers probably know this already -- but Wisconsin recently started charging sales taxes on that food.  The State Journal says it will cost pizza-lovers an extra two-point-seven million dollars a year that will be funneled to Madison.  The state Revenue Department had asked the Streamlined Sales Tax Governing Board if places like Papa Murphy's and Kwik Trip should be charging the tax on pizzas they make at their stores -- but are cooked by customers at home.  The board said the tax applies, because they count as foods prepared outside the home.  Mark Venditto, who owns eight Papa Murphy's stores in Wisconsin and Iowa, says he's been charging the sales tax in the Badger State since March first.  The Sales Tax Governing Board is a 24-state organization based in Westby.  It seeks to make sales tax rules more uniform.  



An investigation continues into the deaths of two people struck by a train in Mauston just after midnight on Saturday morning.  The Canadian Pacific Railroad told authorities that one of its freight trains struck two people standing on the tracks.  Railroad police are helping the Juneau County coroner's office and Mauston Police figure out what happened and why.  Names of the deceased were not immediately disclosed.


Four Milwaukee police officers were injured overnight, when their van was struck by a car at an intersection.  Police said the officers were transporting a suspect at the time -- and the suspect ran way.  The person was still being sought at last word.  There was no immediate word on the conditions of the four injured Milwaukee officers.  Police said their van hit a utility pole after being struck by the car.  It happened around 3:30 this morning.


The provost at U-W Milwaukee will decide whether the campus police chief will be punished for trading sex-related messages with a student on social media.  An independent investigator found that Chief Michael Marzion's conduct was "inappropriate and unprofessional," but it was not bad enough to violate school policies.  The student claimed that Marzion engaged in sexual harassment, but investigator Gary Gerlach said the student prompted the messages.  Gerlach, a former Milwaukee County circuit judge, did not recommend that Marzion be disciplined, and-or receive training on sexual harassment.  The chief has not commented.  The school says provost Johannes Britz has two weeks to study the report, and decide what action to take -- if any.