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Northeast Wisconsin's local news coverage.

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  • 08/03/18--03:11: Fox Valley Cooks Win Big
  • APPLETON, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Five Fox Valley Technical College students won the 2018 American Culinary Federation Student National Championship.

    The competition took place last month in New Orleans.

    Kirk Reilly, Grace Claussen, Gage Dawiedczyk, Morgan VandenLangenberg and Regina Hueckman competed against four other teams for the title.

    Before going to New Orleans, the Fox Valley team won the state title, which included $1,000 from the American Academy of Chefs to assist with travel expenses to the national competition.

    The winning menus from Fox Valley Tech included a summer duck platter, pan seared fluke with seafood "chorizo" and an entree featuring lamb loin and tenderloin, braised potato, minted pea puree and sauteed king oyster mushrooms.

     

    More than 1,500 attended the event.


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  • 08/03/18--03:20: Music Heard For A Mile
  • APPLETON, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - The downtown Appleton area was alive with the sound of music, and it's all thanks to the return of the four-day Mile of Music festival along College Avenue.

    You could hear music from a mile away Wednesday as the 6th Mile of Music festival kicked off and took over the one-mile stretch of the avenue.  

    It's the largest free music event in the world, so the planning for it happened almost immediately after last year's festival ended.

    "It does take a village, it really does, and we couldn't be more happy and proud of the team - we do have a small, but mighty team; the 'Mile Team,' and we start planning,” Mile of Music director of operations, logistics, and talent Ian Thomson said. “You know, it takes about a year to put this event on."

    Dozens of stages had been set up a few days prior to preparing for the big event.

    About 900 live performances by original artists are planned at several venues. Some of those performers that helped kick-off the 6th Mile of Music included Zaney Carney out of Los Angeles, and the father-daughter songwriting team from Springfield, Ill, Lost Acre, if acoustic is more your style.

    A variety of music can be heard out of almost every business during the music festival.

    There's also other music featured this year that you may find in unexpected places, by unexpected people.

    “This is our Tundraland Jam Room that we have setup here on College Avenue,” explained Tundraland president and owner Brian Gottlieb. “There are acts performing now through Sunday, and what’s really great is in between the acts is an open mic and open-platform for anybody that wants to perform.”

    As for how you should prepare for this huge event? Organizers say you shouldn't and recommend not sticking to the schedule, but instead letting your ears be your guide.

    "If I were an attendee, I would not use a schedule, I would just go,” Thomson said. “Just go and explore, take everything in, you know, it's just…experience it!”

    But for those who may not want to miss a favorite act, a full schedule of performances is available on Mile of Music's website.

    The musicians are all performing their own original music. Each concert is free.

    Mile of Music brings in more than 75,000 people and more are expected this time around.


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    APPLETON, WI (WTAQ) - An Appleton man has been sentenced to two years in prison after pleading no contest in June to five counts of capturing an intimate representation.

    29-year-old Andrew Persen admitted to using a camera to record women undressing at several locations, including a home bathroom and a department store changing room.

    A police investigation began once a friend of Persen's contacted the authorities when she discovered footage of herself nude in her own bathroom on a pornographic website. She suspected that Persen had captured the images.

    Persen admitted to the act, but then authorities upon further investigation found more videos on his camera.

    These images were taken from the dressing room at a Target in the Fox River Mall back in April 2017.

    Officers found six images on the camera from the dressing room that showed women exposed. 


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    FOX CROSSING, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Investigators have released 911 calls that show a man, later identified as 25-year Joshua Gomoll, was threatening people with a knife before he was shot and killed by police.

    The Wisconsin Department of Justice also released police body camera video of the shooting.

    We want to warn you. The video is graphic, and may not be appropriate for all viewers.

    The Winnebago County District Attorney ruled that the shooting was justified and no charges will be filed against the officer.

    The first 911 call came in at 2:48 in the afternoon.

    "I want to report a really odd guy in the middle of the street. He's, like, having a violent temper and throwing stuff and kind of running out in traffic," the first caller said.

    Eight minutes later, there was a second 911 call.

    "This guy is running down the street with a knife, threatening everyone he sees. He just threatened a lady and her toddler in the car and she just took off," the caller reported.

    At 3:02, a person at Fritse Park called 911.

    "Some guy was running. He was talking to himself. He kind of looked at us and he waved. So, I waved back. He's like, 'What are you looking at? I’m going to get you' and then he pulled a knife out." 

    Minutes later, Fox Crossing Officer Seely Moe encountered Gomoll on the Trestle Trail bridge.

    "Get down on the ground," you can hear Officer Moe yelling on the video.

    On the body camera video, you can hear Gomoll making noises and you can see him taking steps towards Officer Moe before the officer fired.

    As Gomoll laid on the ground, officers tried to determine whether he still had the knife so they could safely administer first aid.

    "Put your hands out so we can help you," another responding officer said.

    "He's still got the knife in his hand," another officer said.

    As officers moved in, one officer used his Taser as another kicked away the knife. The officers then delivered first aid until paramedics arrived. Gomoll died at the scene.

    According to a report from the Wisconsin Department of Justice, Gomoll's family told investigators he was "...a recovering heroin addict..." and had been clean for several years.

    But in the month leading up to the shooting, his mother told police her son "...had started acting "erratic" and was "pacing" a lot." According to the reports, she also told police her son had been "...recently fired from his job..."

    In an interview with police, Gomoll's father said he believed his son "...recently relapsed back into drug use." Gomoll's father also noted his son had "...a recent break-up...' with his girlfriend.

    Gomoll's ex-girlfriend told police he "...started becoming paranoid." and that his "...attitude changed..." a month before the shooting. She told police she thought Gomoll "...started using some type of drug(s)..."

    FOX 11 reached out to Gomoll's family for comment. In a message, his mother said, "He was not a monster he was my son a dad a brother and very loving at that!!!"

    The Winnebago County District Attorney ruled that the shooting was justified and there will be no criminal charges filed. The DA called the shooting a tragedy for everyone involved and offered his condolences to the Gomoll family.


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    WAUPACA, WI (Wisconsin Radio Network) - A recent crash on Highway 10 in Waupaca is putting more focus on the state's "Slow Down and Move Over" law. 

    Waupaca's Sheriff is reminding people to slow down and move over for emergency vehicles after a semi truck slammed into the back of a fire truck last  weekend.

    The crash happened on Highway 10 in Waupaca Sunday night, and the fire truck did have its lights and sirens on.

    Sheriff Brad Hardel says it's just a sober reminder of the danger emergency service workers are in every day.

    "When you're an officer and you're standing on the side of the road, and let's just use a semi for example, whizzes by you at 65, 70 miles an hour, that's not just a scary situation, that can be deadly in a big hurry."

    Hardel says this is just another in a series of crashes along Highway 10 this year.

    "I've had a couple cases where I've had to actually dive out of the way. So yeah, it's a really scary situation."

    He says this just emphasizes the need to follow the slowdown, move over laws.

    "You must move over to the next lane over. If you cannot move over, meaning there's so much traffic that it doesn't allow you to move over, you have to slow down considerably."

    The driver of the semi suffered serious injuries and remains in the hospital.


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    CLINTONVILLE, WI (WTAQ) - A fire at a warehouse for AHT Wisconsin Windows in the area of Main and 8th Street in Clintonville, had crews on scene early Friday morning. 

    "Upon arrival, the building was fully engulfed," said Clintonville Fire Chief Shane Kruger."

    Krueger added that they ran into a situation that slowed them down and had to change their approach.

    "Some of the main electrical lines and transmission lines were close to the building as well as the lines behind the building were arcing on fire. We went into a defensive attack mode, stay back and could not advance personnel to the building until we got the power shut off."

    No injuries were reported, but Krueger said the damage was extensive.

    "I would believe that the building will probably be  a total loss."

    The fire was reported by a passerby.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Green Bay Packers offensive lineman Bryan Bulaga was activated from the physically unable to perform list and has been cleared to participate in team practices.

    Bulaga has been out since he suffered a torn ACL in week 9 against the Detroit Lions last season. 

    He will be entering his ninth season with Green Bay. 


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - A pair of burglaries in Green Bay have police asking the public for help to identify the accused man.

    The first burglary occurred late on May 27 and the second happened this past Monday, with both taking place on the northwest side of the city.

    According to police, the man appears to be bald or shaved and in both burglaries, he was wearing dark-colored shoes with white socks and gloves.

    Please contact the Green Bay Police Department if you have any additional information.


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    WAUPACA COUNTY (WTAQ) - Waupaca County deputies are asking the public's assistance in locating a potential witness for a recent incident.

    A physical description of the woman and photos can be found on the Waupaca County Sheriff's Office Facebook page.

    Individuals can remain anonymous by reporting information to the Waupaca County CrimeStoppers or visiting their website. 


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    SHEBOYGAN FALLS, WI (WTAQ) - A man was found dead at his Sheboygan Falls home on Friday according to the Sheboygan County Sheriff's Department.

    Emergency responders were called to the home early Friday morning shortly after 5 A.M. to respond to a fire.

    When they arrived at the scene the 55-year-old man was already dead.

    Officials are still investigating both the cause of the fire and the man's death. 


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - The Nitchke and Walnut Street Bridges will be lit green and gold this entire weekend in honor of Packers great Jerry Kramer being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

    The announcement for the lights to be used for one of the first times came on Friday from Mayor Jim Schmitt.

    Jerry Kramer Day also was declared for August 4th and Mayor Schmitt encourages the whole community to celebrate. 


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    MANITOWOC, WI (WTAQ) - Drug and child neglect charges have been recommended by Manitowoc Police for a pair of adults in connection to a child's death.

    46-year-old Eduardo Gamez and 38-year-old Jamie Lynn Schrank were in court on Friday for their bail hearing.

    The two have not been formally charged in the case, but it's recommended they receive two counts of child neglect and one count of meth possession.

    It's also recommended that Schrank be charged with one count of marijuana possession. 

    The two individuals in custody were responsible for watching the child throughout the summer, while the child's parents were at work. 

    An autopsy of the child is currently being conducted in Milwaukee and results are expected in three to eight weeks. 


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Green Bay Packers offensive lineman Bryan Bulaga was activated from the physically unable to perform list and has been cleared to participate in team practices.

    Bulaga has been out since he suffered a torn ACL in week 9 against the Detroit Lions last season. 

    He will be entering his ninth season with Green Bay. 


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - The Nitchke and Walnut Street Bridges will be lit green and gold this entire weekend in honor of Packers great Jerry Kramer being inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame.

    The announcement for the lights to be used for one of the first times came on Friday from Mayor Jim Schmitt.

    Jerry Kramer Day also was declared for August 4th and Mayor Schmitt encourages the whole community to celebrate. 


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Recognition for Jerry Kramer isn't just happening in Canton this weekend.

    Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt has declared Saturday, August 4th, Jerry Kramer Day. The downtown bridge lights will also be green and gold for the first time throughout the weekend in his honor.   From t-shirts to plaques, pennants, and bobbleheads, the Packers Pro Shop has plenty of ways you can get a piece of Kramer's big weekend.

    “Get it before it's gone, it's been going pretty quickly,” said Derek Dimmer, the store’s manager.

    “I remember watching him back in his heydays and I thought it was a wonderful thing to watch and he should have gotten the credit a long time ago,” said Robert Martinez of Milwaukee.

    One thing you won't find in stock is a Kramer jersey. However, the Pro Shop has been filling many requests.

    “We don't have any in stock, so we make customs on the fly,” said Dimmer. “It takes about 15 to 20 minutes to make a custom Kramer jersey.”

    For fans who wish they were in Canton, Kramer’s new exhibit in the team's hall of fame might be the next best thing.

    “He was just enthusiastic and he gave it everything he had and a perfect gentleman,” said Marlys Lohr of Sheboygan Falls.

    The Lohrs say the call to the hall is better late than never.

    “I think it's about time,” said Frank Lohr. “There is no doubt about that.”

    That's the same way Schmitt feels.

    “We even we talked about it at the city council. I think we had sent a letter just saying look, Jerry Kramer is worthy of induction into this Pro Football Hall of Fame, so it has been a long wait, but I think that makes it a little more special for him,” said Schmitt.

    While there are no organized gatherings in the Green Bay area specifically for Kramer, the Packers are holding their Family Night practice Saturday night. The team hopes to show part of his induction speech at some point during the night.


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    APPLETON, WI (WTAQ) - Appleton Police are investigating an armed robbery that took place Saturday morning.

    Officers were called out to Grand Central Station on North Ballard Road.

    According to the report, a masked male with a handgun demanded money from the clerk and fled the store on foot.

    Multiple law enforcement agencies assisted in trying to find the suspect. 

    Anyone with information is asked to contact the Appleton Police Department's Investigator Gleiss at 920-832-5500 or use the REPORT feature on the APD phone app.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Recognition for Jerry Kramer isn't just happening in Canton this weekend.

    Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt has declared Saturday, August 4th, Jerry Kramer Day. The downtown bridge lights will also be green and gold for the first time throughout the weekend in his honor.    From t-shirts to plaques, pennants, and bobbleheads, the Packers Pro Shop has plenty of ways you can get a piece of Kramer's big weekend.

    “Get it before it's gone, it's been going pretty quickly,” said Derek Dimmer, the store’s manager.

    “I remember watching him back in his heydays and I thought it was a wonderful thing to watch and he should have gotten the credit a long time ago,” said Robert Martinez of Milwaukee.

    One thing you won't find in stock is a Kramer jersey. However, the Pro Shop has been filling many requests.

    “We don't have any in stock, so we make customs on the fly,” said Dimmer. “It takes about 15 to 20 minutes to make a custom Kramer jersey.”

    For fans who wish they were in Canton, Kramer’s new exhibit in the team's hall of fame might be the next best thing.

    “He was just enthusiastic and he gave it everything he had and a perfect gentleman,” said Marlys Lohr of Sheboygan Falls.

    The Lohrs say the call to the hall is better late than never.

    “I think it's about time,” said Frank Lohr. “There is no doubt about that.”

    That's the same way Schmitt feels.

    “We even we talked about it at the city council. I think we had sent a letter just saying look, Jerry Kramer is worthy of induction into this Pro Football Hall of Fame, so it has been a long wait, but I think that makes it a little more special for him,” said Schmitt.

    Jerry Kramer's jacket ceremony was Friday. His daughter Alicia got to put the jacket on him to culminate a Hall of Fame mission that she spearheaded for years.

    "Seeing all those Hall of Famers slap dad on the back and the tears welling up in his eyes as he's walking through the gauntlet, I can't trade that feeling for anything in the world," said Alicia Kramer. "It's just an amazing time for dad. I'm just so proud of him and how far he's come throughout his whole life and I can't even put it into words. It was a very emotional moment, but I felt like we're here, it's really real. We've done it. Dad, you're in the hall of fame."

    While there are no organized gatherings in the Green Bay area specifically for Kramer, the Packers are holding their Family Night practice Saturday night. The team hopes to show part of his induction speech at some point during the night.


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    SHEBOYGAN, WI (WTAQ) - Police in Sheboygan are looking for a dog that they believe bit a young child. 

    Officers were notified that a 4-year-old was near the slide at King Park Sunday evening.

    They say a large dog, described as a 50 to 60-pound pit bull gave the child non-life threatening injuries when it bit the child.

    The dog is described as mostly white with a black spot on its back, black legs and a black and white spotted tail. 

    The dog did not appear to have a collar. 

    If you have any information about the dog, you're asked to call Sheboygan police at 920-459-3334.


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  • 08/05/18--17:43: Attempted Fast Food Robbery
  • MANITOWOC, WI (WTAQ) - Police were called to the Wendy's at 4441 Calumet Ave for a suspect that attempted a robbery Sunday afternoon. 

    Officers arrived on scene just before 1 p.m. after being notified that the suspect showed a note that was asking for money. 

    Officials say no money was taken, but the suspect ran from the scene. 

    Manitowoc police are asking for help in investigating an attempted robbery that happened Sunday afternoon.

    Officers used K9 units and a drone, but they haven't been able to find the suspect.

    Police are asking for anyone with any information to either call Manitowoc County Crime Stoppers at (920) 683-4466 or the Manitowoc Police Department at (920) 686-6551.


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  • 08/05/18--18:13: Saying Goodbye To Straws
  • ALGOMA, WI (WTAQ) - Businesses like Starbucks and McDonald's have begun testing alternatives to plastic straws with plans to phase them out, and, last month, the Fiserv Forum, the Bucks' new arena in Milwaukee, announced it will not offer plastic straws at events.

    The movement to eliminate plastic straws to protect the environment is picking up traction here in Wisconsin.   It's estimated 500 million straws are used every day in the U-S. Environmentalists say they end up polluting our waterways and kill marine life.

    Smashed on the Rocks, a lakeside bar and grill in Algoma recently added something new to its fully loaded Bloody Mary--

    It has white and red candy cane stripes. It’s a paper straw.

    “We’re on the Great Lakes and we have this restaurant on the marina. I think it’s important that we start to make this change and make people aware of it," said Smashed on the Rocks co-Owner Rana Ninneman.

    The mother and daughter owners say they're finally ditching the plastic.

    “A lot of people have been really excited about it. They agree with it and they agree that it’s a step in the right direction,” said Ninneman.

    Customer Laura Tralmer, a Tomah resident, recently visited Florida where the change is well underway. She said many places didn’t have any straw alternatives.

    “We needed these in Coco Beach when we were down there a couple weeks ago because of the turtles and the environment they were not giving us any straws,” said Tralmer.

    Plastic straws are already banned in nearly every city in Florida.

    At smashed, they've also decided to use biodegradable to-go boxes and silverware.

    Brooke LeClaire is the co-owner of Black Honey Hashery in De Pere. She said they try to use as few plastic straws as possible.

    “We greet tables with water and we don’t put straws in anybody's water,” said LeClaire.

    They do use straws in sodas, smoothies, and iced coffee drinks. They tested out paper straws for a short time, but customers didn't react well.

    “They love the idea of a paper straw but they just don’t love drinking out of them,” said LeClaire.

    She says at this time plastic is the most feasible option for her business, but she looks forward to the day they're gone.


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