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Northeast Wisconsin's local news coverage.

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    WRIGHTSTOWN, WI (WTAQ) - A 35-year-old North Carolina man is facing child pornography and child enticement charges after incidents that happened at a Brown County campground.

    Richard Davenport was arrested for allegedly offering money to juveniles for sex near Apple Creek campground in Wrightstown.

    The criminal complaint shows that Davenport arrived at the campground on August 2nd with his wife and had multiple encounters with a 12-year-old girl and a 10-year-old boy. 

    When police searched Davenport's phone they discovered multiple pornographic images of children ranging in ages of 5 to 12 years old. 

    A search of Davenport's camper revealed stuffed animals, though he and his wife have no children.


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    MENASHA, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - A Friday night blaze consumes a historic building in downtown Menasha.

    The fire started on the roof of the Brin Theatre downtown and was first reported around 5:30.

    Officials say 10-14 people lived in the building, which has about eight apartments and three to four active storefronts.

    No injuries have been reported as a result of the fire at this point.

    Many nearby fire departments were called in to help put down the flames and make sure they didn't spread to other structures.

    The Red Cross is helping those forced out of their homes.

    Meanwhile, Officials are beginning the investigation into the cause of the fire.


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    MANITOWOC COUNTY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - According to a criminal complaint the bruises left on a toddler when he died while being cared for by a Manitowoc couple are due to "rough handling".

    38 year old Jamie Lynn Schrank faces charges of neglecting a child, possession of meth, THC and drug paraphernalia, and party to a crime.

    46 year old Eduardo Gamez faces three charges of neglecting a child and possession of meth.

    Neither has been charged with the death of the boy.

    In the complaint, doctors say the bruises left on the boy were point to "rough handling," and doctors suspect the boy was being abused and neglected.

    It happened when Gamez and Schrank were babysitting the three-year-old boy while his mom was at work.

    According to the criminal complaint, the two smoked meth while the boy and their five-year-old son were in the home July 28.

    The boy was taken to the hospital for internal and external injuries, where he died later that night.

    The complaint also says their son had bruises that indicate abuse and neglect.

    Both will be in court Monday for an initial appearance.


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  • 08/11/18--06:05: Pool Party Back On
  • GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - The Brown County Health Department closed Colburn Pool on Thursday because of a leaking pipe in the buildings mechanical.

    Dan Ditscheit the interim Director for the Green Bay Parks, Recreation, and Forestry Department tells FOX 11 crews are not sure how the leak happened, but they were able to fix it Friday morning.

    Officials from the health department did a second inspection Friday and signed off to reopen the pool.

    "They had some concerns about the employees that had to be down in the basement. There was no concern to the public using the pool, strictly for the employees that had to be in the basement," said Ditscheit.

    Ditscheit said the pool will remain open for the next week and will close for the season on August 19.


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  • 08/12/18--07:03: Party In The Park
  • ASHWAUBENON, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - The fourth annual Ashwaubenon Blast event took place Saturday.

    Festival lovers of all ages were invited to join in on the fun.

    The event supports different volunteer organizations throughout the community.

    It featured a car show, live music, games and more.

    Jay Krueger, Ashwaubenon Alumni Association president, tells FOX 11 it's all about bringing the community back together.

    "One of the big things is, we push this out to a lot of the alumni groups and reunions. There are reunions going on that will be meeting out here today. So there's a lot of that where you get to come on out, see some friends that maybe you haven't seen in a while, you get to meet their families and that so it's a great community event."

    The event was put on by various Ashwaubenon organizations.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - A Green Bay home caught fire and caused $25,000 worth of damage, on the city's east side.

    The Green Bay Metro Fire Department says smoke and flames were coming from outside the back part of the home at 1376 Doblon Street just before 6 last night (SUNDAY).

    The fire burned the side of the home, a portion of the roof and inside the home and into the bathroom area.

    Firefighters were able to put the fire out quickly and keep it from burning the entire house.

    Officials say those inside, including their pets, got out of the home before the fire department arrived.

    There's no word yet on what caused the fire.


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    MANITOWOC, WI (WTAQ) - A dehumidifier may have caused a house fire Sunday morning in Manitowoc.

    Around 8:30, Manitowoc Fire & Rescue was called to 961 Rosemere Circle after a neighbor reported smoke coming from the house.

    Upon arrival, firefighters found the fire in the basement and quickly put it out.

    No one was in the house at the time it started.

    Firefighters determined that the fire started in the basement and that there was smoke damage on the first floor of the house.

    There is no estimate of the cost of the damage at this time.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) -  Kids aren't back in school yet, but "back to school season" is in full swing.

    One Green Bay organization is making sure every kid has what they need on their first day.

    The Green Bay Salvation Army hosted their annual "Tools for School" program on Monday.

    The goal of the program is to ensure children from low-income families across Brown County have what they need when school starts.

    Nan Paul, Director of Social Services at the Green Bay Salvation Army, describes how big their operation has become.

    "This year we plan to provide school supplies to about 88 children," said Paul. 

    The program has a backpack for every child, which comes along with standard school supplies such as notebooks, folders, and pencils.

    They even have some fun supplies for kids too.

    "High lighters, extra special pens, extra special crayons for the little kids," explains Paul.

    Carol Lemirand started working at the Green Bay Salvation Army in the 1970's with her husband before they embarked on a long career with the organization.

    "We were called to be full-time Salvation Army officers in Missouri and four other Wisconsin locations," explains Lemirand.

    Carol and her husband are both now retired and have moved back home to Green Bay to be around family and friends. She explains that there are some benefits to working as a volunteer now compared to her past experience as an officer. 

    "I don't have to do all the planning and prep, I can just enjoy the people," remarked Lemirand.

    Carol and other volunteers were out on Monday helping distribute backpacks and supplies to around 800 children from Brown County.

    According to Nan Paul, this is the twentieth year the Salvation Army of Green Bay has provided supplies to area children through their "Tools for School" program.

     


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - A Green Bay bus driver has been charged in an incident where a mentally disabled man was left riding the bus for several hours.

    Twenty-four-year-old Kayla Murphy has an initial appearance scheduled for August 24 after being charged with one misdemeanor count of recklessly subjecting an individual to risk of abuse.

    The victim is a 40-year-old man with down syndrome that is a client of Paragon Community Services in Ashwaubenon. 

    The man wasn't dropped off by the company bus at the typical time and was discovered two hours later inside the bus unharmed at the Paragon parking lot.

    The company is claiming that the procedure to check all of the seats was not completed by the employee.

     

     


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    OSHKOSH, WI (WTAQ) - A former Oshkosh Correctional Institution worker charged with second-degree sexual assault by a correctional staff member and two counts of delivering illegal articles to an inmate has been ordered to stand trial.

    38-year-old April Paulson is being accused of having sexual contact with an inmate and delivering nude photos of herself.

    Court records show she is scheduled to enter a plea on August 20 after waiving a preliminary hearing on Monday. 

    Both the inmate and Paulson worked in the facilities kitchen, according to a criminal complaint.

    Prison security and Oshkosh police began the investigation on May 11, working on a tip.

    Paulson started her employment at the facility only about a month prior to the start of the investigation.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - A competency exam has been ordered for an Ashwaubenon man following an incident in which he set fire to his apartment and tried to escape from police while naked.

    Dmitry Morozov will have his ability to understand proceedings and assist in his defense determined by the competency exam.

    Ten counts, which include seven counts of recklessly endangering safety, were charged to Morozov.

    He pleaded not guilty to all ten counts on June 25. 

    The incident occurred on June 9 when a downstairs neighbor of Morozov complained that water was coming through their ceiling.

    Morozov was ordered to clean up the water, but police again responded to the building after a fire was reported.

    A naked Morozov attempted to escape out a window but was apprehended and arrested by police. 

     


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  • 08/13/18--16:15: Monument Nearing Completion
  • TWO RIVERS, WI (WTAQ) - A new bronze sculpture is nearing completion along the shoreline of Lake Michigan that pays homage to the areas original inhabitants.

    The "Spirit of Two Rivers" is a ten-foot-tall statue in Two Rivers that depicts three Native Americans figures and a bronze canoe.

    The monument is close to completion and a dedication ceremony is planned for September 16. The artist responsible for the monument, Richard Wallen, says he hasn't been able to enjoy the moment yet.

    "Once my nerves settle down and I see it in place and secure, then I'll think about celebrating," said Wallen.

    Each piece of art costs roughly $750,000 and Co-Chair of the "Spirit of the Rivers" organization, Carol Wergin, says many people doubted if the project was realistic.

     "Rightfully so there was some skepticism in the beginning," said Wergin. "People weren't sure about how we could raise that kind of funds." 

    The project was made possible through donations received from people in both Two RIvers and Manitowoc. 

    Wergin says the feedback so far has been overwhelmingly positive.

    "People are pulling over with their cars and rolling down their windows and giving thumbs up," says Wergin. "You hear awesome, amazing, incredible."

     


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Today's Primary Election may have more of a story to tell than just who will end up on the ballot in November.

    Charles Jacobs, Political Science Professor at St. Norbert College says voter turnout will start to answer a big question.  

    "We may see whether or not we are going to see some surge in Democratic interest in some of the candidates that are out there that might pose some difficulty for Republicans.  

    Jacobs says voter turnout may determine if Republicans can hold off the highly talked about Blue wave in the future.  

    "If they want to ensure that Trump succeeds, they need to get out to the polls, and if Democrats hope to undermine his ability, they need to get out the polls so that is why I suspect we are going to see slightly higher than typical turnout, although it might not be record-breaking in any sense."   

    He says if the numbers are high for the Democrat elections, it may give Republicans a little scare especially since voter turnout is traditionally lower for midterm primary elections.  

    "So if you see a groundswell of interest in some of these primaries and you start to see turnout creep over 20 percent, that might suggest that there are a lot of interested voters."  

    He says a high turnout may indicate a strong motivation for change which could serve as an alert to incumbents.  

    In Wisconsin primary elections, voters can only vote for races in their declared party meaning they can't vote in both the Democrat governor race and for the Republican Senate candidate.  


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    SHAWANO, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Primary election rules are leaving some people without a voice in races that they want to make an impact in.

    Six counties in the area have an all-Republican primary for Sheriff, meaning Democrats will not be able to have a say in who their next Sheriff is and who they want to represent the party in the race for Governor in November.

    Shawano County is one of the counties with the dilemma. Karla Duchac, City of Shawano Clerk-Treasurer says those voters have to decide which race is more important.

    "It is up to you if you want to stay with your normal political party or change it for the day for that selection."  

    The one saving grace in Shawano County is that the race for Sheriff will not be decided with this election, the winner will have an Independent opponent in November.  

    The same can not be said in Outagamie County.   With all the candidates that entered the race being Republican, barring a write-in candidate in November, that race will be decided on Tuesday and that leaves Dottie LeClair frustrated.  

    "When I weighed what we were up against, I could not see myself going over the Republican side."  

    Duchac says simply put, this election is just to give people to make decisions within their own political parties.  

    "You are just selecting your candidate to move on over to the November election."  

    The problem comes when the winner of the one party does not have any opposition from the other party in November, making the primary a general election for that position."  

    Marinette, Oconto, Waupaca, Waushara, and Calumet counties are all in the same position that Outagamie County is in, with all candidates that are running for Sheriff all come from the same party.

    Outagamie County Clerk Lori O'Bright says she understands the frustration, but voters need to look at this election different.  

    "I know it is confusing for voters, but they just have to think of it as five separate elections and they have to choose which election they are going to vote in."  

    The five elections represent the five parties that are on the ballot.    

    Crossover voting will be allowed to take place in November.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Among the school supplies on many parents list this year is bulletproof backpacks.

    They're sold online at stores like Amazon and even Office Depot and Wal-Mart.

    "The backpack is made with a Polyethylene material," said Yasir Sheikh, President of the Guard Dog brand of Bulletproof Backpacks.

    "This is a lightweight durable material that allows for it to integrate into the backpack seamlessly."

    Sheikh tells FOX 11 the backpacks are lightweight and designed to be used daily.

    "The backpack is rated level III-A."

    On a chart of ballistic protection levels, III-A is categorized as sub-machine gun velocity- which includes pistols and some rifles.

    Green Bay Police Captain Jeremy Muraski tells FOX they're an interesting idea in theory.

    "A lot of the active shooter scenarios we're seeing around the country, unfortunately, we're seeing rifles. So most of those backpacks wouldn't stop the rounds the students would be facing. I think it builds a false sense of security."

    Muraski says there's only one thing that can combat an active shooter.

    "The only real way to guarantee that you can stop this threat is having something that can counteract it."

    Although some had never heard of the bulletproof backpacks, they still weren't opposed to them.

    "I would say it's something to consider at least weigh the options," said Ryan Brinkman visiting from Dyersville, Ohio.

    "Knowing that so many schools were built at different times what plan might work for one building might not work for another building, in terms of emergency plan," said Milwaukee mother of two, Lara Vance.

    "So having something like that in place would be a good measure to have."

    Although her son is only nine, Vance says she still wants to be cautious after events like the shooting in Parkland last year.

    A representative of Green Bay Public Schools said the idea of bullet-proof backpacks was not brought up during the district's recent public sessions about safety in schools.

    Captain Muraski said the backpacks run for about $200, but each parent could contribute to having a retired police officer in schools, like Chief Andrew Smith proposed, which he believes is safer.


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    MARINETTE, WI (WRN) - More U.S. Navy ships are being built in northeast Wisconsin.

    The keel of USS Cooperstown is being laid in a ceremony today at Fincantieri Marinette Marine.

    It's the 12th littoral combat ship to be built in Marinette and, one of eight under construction there.

    The U.S. Senate passed a $717 billion defense appropriations bill August 1st that includes funding for three littoral combat ships in the next fiscal year.


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    HOWARD, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - A Howard swimming hole, quickly gaining in popularity, is adding safety measures.

    With new sand beaches, for the first time, Duck Creek Quarry has been consistently attracting hundreds of swimmers each day.

    “It's a beautiful place,” said Linda Newton of Oneida. “I like it. The kids like it.”

    It's free to swim, but as you can see clearly on signs, you assume all risk using the quarry.

    “I sometimes worry about the people that go way out there on their innertubes, because what if they like fall off and can't get back on them?” said Ian Colby, a 10-year-old from Green Bay.

    “Depth markers and distance markers would be helpful I think,” said Mary Colby of Green Bay.

    Howard's Village Board agreed Monday to spend about $12,600 on central steps and handrails, three ladders, and five life-saving throw ring posts.

    Village leaders say the safety improvements are not in response to any specific incident at the quarry, although, they were told about a 13-year-old who nearly drowned earlier this summer.

    “Basically the village wants to do everything it can to make sure users are safe at the quarry,” said Geoff Farr, Howard’s Public Works Director.

    One thing Farr tells FOX 11 is the village is not considering is employing lifeguards.

    “I talked to the operator over at Ashwaubomay and she questioned if we could even run lifeguards there because of the depths and lifeguards are expected to swim down and get somebody. There is liability associated with that and that kind of goes with the decision not to charge fees.”

    The quarry’s regulars say while they appreciate the safety additions, they already feel safe enough.

    “We just have to keep an eye on all the kids, swim at your own risk I guess,” said Newton.

    There is no indication yet when the safety improvements will be complete.

    To save money, village public works employees will do the installation.


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    CHILTON, WI (WTAQ) - A man pleaded not guilty on Tuesday for allegedly providing the drugs responsible in a fatal overdose that occurred last April in Appleton.

    Evan Schultz is being charged with first-degree reckless homicide after an Appleton woman overdosed inside her apartment on April 16, 2017.

    Schultz allegedly provided the carfentanil that was responsible for her death.

    He is scheduled to return to court on September 10 for a status conference. 

    Schultz waived a preliminary hearing and according to court records, no trial date has been set.

    Schultz and the victim met outside a convenience store two hours prior to her death, according to security camera footage from a convenience store. 

     


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    ASHWAUBENON, WI (WTAQ) - Horses from Meyer Farm which will be a can't-miss attraction at this year's Brown County Fair, which is celebrating the counties 200th anniversary.

    Brown County Fair Association President Steve Corrigan explains the historical importance of this gathering.

    "Because Brown County is celebrating a 200 year anniversary, we want to showcase the hard work of horsepower that founded this county 200 years ago," said Corrigan.

    He explains that fairgoers will have ample opportunity to catch this new attraction.

    "At the fair all week long we'll going to have fourteen draft horses on display," said Corrigan. "They're going to do a two-times a day pyramid hitch, which is ten horses at a time."

    The horses were on display to the public and media on Tuesday at a press conference held at Brown County Veterans Memorial Arena Complex. 

    The Brown County Fair opens on Wednesday and runs through Sunday.

    Brown County Executive Troy Streckenbach explains the importance of the fair.

    "What you see is a community event and you see community pride," said Streckenbach. "Whether we're supporting the veterans or the agriculture community, it's right here in Brown County."

    All military personnel is receiving free admission on Sunday, while all other individuals can buy reduced $7 tickets at the gate all day.


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    TOWN OF WINNECONNE, WI (WTAQ) - Family and friends are still grieving after a deadly crash in Winnebago County last Friday, but there's another part of the community that continues to have a difficult time moving on.

    Tragedy struck the Town of Winneconne last week when 10-year-old Kherington Brownwell was killed after the vehicle she was riding in rolled over and pinned her inside.

    Winnebago County Sheriff John Matz explains this incident has hit home for many in the police force.

    "It's especially hard when there's a child," said Matz. "If you have children around the same age, it's tough."

    Some members of the police force have sought counseling after responding to the crash last week. 

    "We talk about how we feel and how it impacts us," said Matz. "We continue to monitor those employees."

    Matz believes certain individuals become emotionally vulnerable in this situations.

    "Dispatchers are taking all of those calls, they are feeling all of that emotion that the caller is, they are visualizing what is happening," he said. "We do the best we can given the circumstances."

    Investigators believe speed and alcohol were a factor in the crash, but no charges have been filed against the driver.


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