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Northeast Wisconsin's local news coverage.

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  • 11/13/18--16:08: Now Hiring
  • APPLETON, WI (WTAQ) - Record low-unemployment in the state is having unintended consequences and leaving some businesses unable to find applicants. The lack of workers has forced some local restaurants and shops to close their doors. 

    At least temporarily. Such is the case with Frank's Pizza Palace in downtown Appleton because they currently understaffed.

    The squeeze has both customers and local business owners frustrated.

    "It's sad, it's just really sad," says Natasha Banks.

    Banks fits the description of both customer and business owner because her eatery, The Cozzy Corner, is located right across the street from Frank's Pizza Palace.

    Her business hasn't been immune to the shortage of workers and has had enough of an effect to force her into closing one location.

    "The one in Kaukauna we were struggling keeping employees," she says. "We were just having high turnaround over there."

    Banks has tried her best to find help. She says she's offered higher wages and attempted to help find living, but her restaurant continued to have a tough time competing against delivery services.

    In the end, it wasn't feasible to keep both locations open.

    "I just decided that it would be best if we just let it close and focus on this one," says Banks.

    The struggle continues down the street at West Corporation.

    "We've been having to search outside of our normal scope to try and find workers for our openings," says talent acquisition manager Nick Dondlinger.

    To try and find those potential workers they've highlighted their benefits package.

    "A lot of the people that we would entice to bring in are excited about our generous PTO and health insurance options," he says.

    Appleton Downtown Inc. adds that the Holiday season is also having an effect on the current climate.

    "They need additional hours to staff, additional people on the floor, this is very busy time for downtown Appleton," said Jennifer Stephany with the Appleton Downtown Inc.

    She added that there might still be a reason for optimism in the area.

    "We're about to see a new influx of new employees into our district as well as we look to the future of U.S. Venture joining our downtown neighborhood," says Stephany. 

    It's still unknown when Frank's Pizza Palace will reopen.


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    ASHWAUBENON, WI (WTAQ) - The Salvation Army kicked off their Christmas season by announcing their fundraising goal.

     The goal is for more money then they brought in last year.  

    "We have a rather large goal of $1.25 million dollars.  

    Captain Matthew O'Neil, Brown County Coordinator says this goal is obtainable and reaching their goal is not uncommon as they were able to exceed their goal of $1.1 million dollars last year.  

    He says that goes a long way for people in need.  

    "Reaching our goal means that we can continue to provide service to those in need."   

    Right now, volunteer shifts for bell ringing are open for the taking.  

    Currently, out of 14,000 shifts, Captain O'Neil says they are down to about 10 thousand right now.  

    Last year 4,999 children received over 42,000 gifts through Toy Shop distribution. 2,080 food baskets were distributed, 385 families were served by the Adopt-a-Family program, 499 games were donated through Angel Tree and 184 seniors were gifted through Silver Bells.              


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  • 11/13/18--16:47: Stopping Retail Theft
  • GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - This the season for stealing.

    Green Bay Police spent Tuesday working with area businesses to try to limit shoplifting this holiday season.

    Police Captain Kevin Warych says studies show two big items are commonly stolen.  

    "It's clothing and makeup. We know that makeup is a huge thing that is stolen because it is small and concealable. "   

    Green Bay Police Lieutenant Richard Belanger also owns businesses in Green Bay, he says the idea is for business owners to learn and bring that information back, and says it makes a big difference.

    "Educate their employees on what to look for."  

    Belanger says that includes people who are looking around, for cameras or people that do not seem like they are fitting in.  

    "It is frustrating because we are working hard as business owners and as employees for people who are doing the right thing and making good choices but is frustrating we have to stop and take time for people who are stealing."  

    According to Belanger, another thing to be aware of is counterfeit money.  

    He says businesses can adjust or install security cameras to cover those areas of the store or set up merchandise differently.  

     


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Green Bay Police say they have received reports of the elderly falling victim to scams.

    In many of the cases, elderly victims are convinced that their computer has a virus, and they need to buy thousands of dollars of gift cards to get rid of it.

    Police Captain Kevin Warych is asking those who work in businesses that sell the cards to take a proactive approach.

    "We are trying to educate the retailers that they train their staff to have these conversations with elderly people when they buy these large amounts of gift cards.

    He says that is simply asking them why they are buying so many cards and adds that like many scams, more often than not, once the money is spent, it is gone.   "

    Unfortunately, these are very difficult crimes to investigate based on them all being done online and often times, probably not even in this country.  

    Warych says it is important for families to have these conversations with their older loved ones and for the community to help each other when they are shopping this holiday season.  

    "If they are educated, hopefully, it will stop this from reoccurring."


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - While most campuses in the UW-System are seeing dwindling numbers, UW-Green Bay is reporting five consecutive years of enrollment growth.

    If you ask a few students on UW-Green Bay's campus why they chose to go to school here, you'll hear plenty of reasons, but one is clearly brought up more than others.

    “It's close to home, so I can go back whenever I feel like,” said Meadow Schmidt, a freshman from Reedsville.

    The average distance to home for students became even shorter this year. UWGB reports it has 7,251 students enrolled this fall.

    Nearly a third of that total, 2,164 students, is from Brown County. That number grew by 600, or 8 percent, compared to last year.

    Eric Arneson, Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs & Campus Climate at UW-Green Bay, tells FOX 11....

    “So what that says to me is that people in our community are seeing UWGB as a viable option for them to be able to stay at home, which may be more economical."

    Arneson also says another thing adding to enrollment is the school has added more than a dozen academic programs in the last five years, many in response to demand from area businesses.

    “What we heard really strongly is we need engineering, so now we have the Resch College of Engineering. We've heard that we desperately need nurses, so next fall we'll embark on our four-year nursing program.”

    According to preliminary numbers from the UW-System, only seven of the system's 26 campuses saw enrollment growth compared to last year.

    In our area, UW-Oshkosh saw an increase less than a percentage point. Of the five satellite campuses in our area, only the Fox Valley campus saw enrollment rise (.4%). Fond du Lac (-11.4%), Manitowoc (-16.5%), Marinette (-11.1%), and Sheboygan (-8.4%) all saw decreases.

    “There are no bad schools in Wisconsin,” said Arneson.

    “I just think students look at where am I going to get the best bang for my buck and where am I going to get the best experience.”

    UWGB reports its students leave with the lowest debt ratio among the 13 state universities.

    While the debt ratio is lowest at UWGB, it does not have the lowest annual undergraduate tuition. It is in the lower two-thirds, however, at $7,878 a year.

    Earlier this year, the UW system restructured, adding Marinette, Manitowoc and Sheboygan two-year campuses to UW-Green Bay, bringing in 1,192 additional students, raising total fall enrollments to 8,443.


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    OSHKOSH, WI (WTAQ) - UW-Oshkosh Officials are saying that an armed robbery took place on campus early Wednesday morning.

    Officials say at around 8:30 AM two men with handguns robbed an ATM inside the Reeve Memorial Union building.

    Authorities are actively searching for the suspects after they drove away from campus in a vehicle.

    The Fox Valley Technical College Riverside Campus in Oshkosh briefly went into lockdown and asked everyone to avoid the campus, while UW-Oshkosh never entered into a lockdown.

    UW-Oshkosh Police Chief Kurt Leibold explains why they didn't take that step.

    "We knew immediately that these suspects had fled campus and were no longer a danger to this campus," he says.

    If they had remained nearby, it would have been a different story.

    "If we had felt it was necessary we would have told the students and the staff to shelter in place, which means remain where you are or get to where you're going to be," explains Chief Leibold.

    Some students remain disappointed in that decision, though.

    "Especially with everything going on in the world right now, I thought that they would take our safety into consideration a little more," says student Serena Lenius.

    "I just think that we need to take student safety into consideration more," says student Ellie Saniter. "I don't want to have to text my mom at nine in the morning saying that I'm walking to class while there is a gunman on campus."

    Campus police has indicated that they've received a good description of both suspects.

    "We've been receiving information from witnesses who are giving us good information," he says.

    One suspect has been described as a white male wearing a black hoodie with blue jeans, a gray hooded sweatshirt, and a brown ski mask. The second suspect is being described as an African-American male wearing dark clothing with red and white colored Addidas shoes.

    Both suspects are believed to be in their 20's and witnesses even got a pretty good look at the vehicle the pair drove off in.

    "The vehicle is a tan four-door, possibly Buick, late 90's vehicle," says Chief Leibold.

    An additional suspect was driving the vehicle.

    Students and the public are not thought to be in danger as this authorities believe this was a targeted incident.

    Officials believe the suspects are fleeing towards Madison after a preliminary search turned up nothing.

    Officials stated that the same company's carriers have been targeted three times since September.


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    MADISON, WI (WRN) - A Joint Finance Committee hearing at the Capitol could determine the future of hundreds of paper workers in the Fox Valley.

    A $70 million tax incentive package aims to keep Kimberly Clark’s Cold Spring plant open.

    “I’m asking that you folks send a message, don’t turn your back on these jobs.” said Neenah Mayor and former Finance Committee co-chair Dean Kaufert.

    The plant makes adult incontinence products and employs more than 400 people.

    Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation Executive Director Mark Hogan said those jobs can go elsewhere.

    “There are other states that are willing to provide incentives, and that’s the free market that we live,” Hogan said.

    John Deitrich, vice president of global manufacturing for Kimberly-Clark, said a decision on closing the plant hinges on Senate passage of the package. “AB 963 came to us from the state, and it caused us to pause the public announcement we made, about closing the Neenah Cold Spring facility. And with the opportunity to arrive at a new collective bargaining agreement, that with AB 963 will keep Cold Spring open.”

    Republicans will need some Democrats’ support for that to happen.

    “I am not convinced that this is the right thing for the state to do,” GOP state Senator Luther Olsen, a finance committee member, said during Wednesday’s hearing.

    There are also three Senate Republicans – Senators Steve Nass of Whitewater, Chris Kapenga of Delafield and David Craig of the Town of Vernon – who are on record as opposing the deal, which passed the Assembly earlier this year.

    Governor-elect Tony Evers tossed some water on the idea yesterday as well, saying he'd rather see an overhaul of incentives in the state as opposed to company-specific packages.  


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - A man charged with sexually assaulting a Green Bay woman was extradited from Laos. 

    Green Bay Police say 28-year-old Jimmy Choumemany allegedly assaulted a woman on North Washington Street back in July. 

    He has been charged with first-degree sexual assault with a dangerous weapon.

    Green Bay Police Chief Andrew Smith says the case is disturbing.

    “He was out hunting, he was a predator. This was an individual that was looking for someone to attack and unfortunately, he found someone, Smith said. “This victim has no connection to the assailant. I think anytime a female is assaulted sexually, there is trauma and we don’t want any kind of activity like that happening in our community.”

    Investigators say Choumemany eventually left the U.S. for Laos and was located by federal agencies on October 12. 

    “This is not a one and done guy. This is not the kind of guy that deserves to be walking around freely, this is the kind of guy that needs to be in jail," Smith said.

    Lieutenant Rick Belanger worked on the case and says the whole situation is unusual.

    “This is all a brand new process that we are not used to. I don’t think we ever had an incident where we tracked someone into a different county.”

    Belanger says different sources, including family, confirmed that Choumemany had fled the country. 

    Federal Government was able to locate him.

    “He was taken into custody, brought into Detroit and is now back in Wisconsin," Belanger said.

    The investigation included some in-depth digging and looking at surveillance cameras. Smith says it also included working with Federal authorities in the arrest and proves one thing.

    “If you come here and commit a crime, we are going to hunt you down. We will find you and will bring you to justice no matter what it takes.”

    He appeared in a Green Bay courtroom Tuesday and is being held on a $500,000 dollar cash bond.

     Chief Andrew Smith says they owe the other departments a lot of gratitude.

    “We owe their police department some Packer jerseys or cheese curds or something because it was important that they helped find this guy.”


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    MARINETTE COUNTY, WI (WTAQ) - With the state's nine-day gun season starting this Saturday, hunters should be aware of baiting and feeding restrictions in place for some areas.

    The restrictions come in response to the "hot topic" of chronic wasting disease.

    A wild deer tested positive for CWD in Michigan's Upper Peninsula last month and CWD was also found at a captive deer farm in Goodman earlier this year.

    For Michigan's Upper Peninsula, this is the first time that a wild deer has tested positive for the disease.

    "I guess none of us were totally shocked or surprised. We were hoping this day would never come," says Craig Albright, Michigan DNR Wildlife Division Field Operations Manager.

    Albright says that the affected deer was a four-year-old doe shot in Dickinson County, which is only about four miles away from the Wisconsin border.

    This has prompted areas of the Northwoods to ask hunters to drop off the heads of deer harvested so they can be tested for CWD. 

    So far northeast Wisconsin has been fairly lucky in avoiding the disease.

    "At this very point, we have not found wild CWD in any of the Northeast Wisconsin counties," says Jeff Pritzl, DNR District Wildlife Supervisor. "We've been pretty much flanked on all sides now, except for the waters of Lake Michigan."

    Pritzl notes that there hasn't been a confirmed case of wild CWD in the area, but the disease has been spotted.

    CWD was found at a captive deer farm across Marinette County near Goodman earlier this year.

    Officials say the disease can easily be spread and the baiting and feeding restrictions are an effort to keep deer from grouping together.

    "Just disease management, in general, has to do with deer density, the amount of contact they have with each other, and so that's why there are good reasons to not draw a lot of animals into one spot on a repeated basis," explains Pritzl. "And that's what baiting does."

    A concern for officials is that deer tend to be sociable animals and can travel 20 to 30 miles.

    The baiting and feeding ban has sparked mixed emotions from local hunters.

    "It helps bring in the wildlife and the deer and all that. And now, it kind of stinks, because some areas you can't. You just got to sit there, and wait for the deer," says Laurie Piencikowski of Green Bay.

    "You're restricting deer movements. And the deer, based on my observations and lots of trail cameras, they tend to become very nocturnal," says Al Hofacker of Athelstane.

    "I just wish if they're going to have a baiting ban, it was statewide, and it was equal for everybody. Either bait or don't bait," says Brian Heins of the Town of Seneca.

    CWD is present in at least 23 states and has also been found in at least two Canadian provinces, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Those statistics are as of August 1, 2018. 


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    APPLETON, WI (WTAQ) - The man who allegedly initiated events at Jack's Pub in Appleton, which led to a police officer killing a bystander, has had a trial date set for the third time.

    Henry Nellum faces seven charges for the May 21, 2017 incident in downtown Appleton, including attempted first-degree intentional homicide and felony murder.

    Lt. Jay Steineke shot and killed bystander Jimmy Sanders following the response to a disturbance started by Nellum. Sanders was not involved in the fight and Lt. Steineke has been cleared of any wrong-doing.

    Nellum previously entered a bid to have the felony murder count dismissed, but it was rejected by a state appeals court.

    Nellum can be charged with Sanders death, under Wisconsin law, even though he was not directly responsible for it.

     

    An April 26 trial date was set at a hearing on Wednesday. Court records show that Nellum will next be in court on February 11 for a motions hearing.


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    ASHWAUBENON, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - The Green Bay Booyah, not the Bullfrogs, will now be trying to stir up crowds and home runs as the area’s summer college baseball team.

    The new name was unveiled at an event Wednesday night at the Green Bay Distillery.

    “It's going to take a little getting used to, I loved the Frogs, but we're going to love the Booyah,” said Karen Johnson, a season ticket holder.

    With a $10 million, 3,359-person capacity stadium under construction on Holmgren Way in Ashwaubenon, the team's ownership group, Big Top Baseball, felt the time was right to move on from Bullfrogs.

    The Booyah emerged out of an online contest.

    John Fanta, Vice President of Big Top Baseball, tells FOX 11 San Diego-based branding company Brandiose also pitched in.

    “They've helped us reimagine and kind of identify a logo series that we could unveil to be part of the community and to kind of identify with the Booyah.”

    The naming contest started with fans submitting ideas and then Booyah, Cheese Curds, Old Fashioneds, Supper Clubbers, Tailgaters, Under Dogs, and Wurst were chosen as finalists.

    “I can just picture during a game and we're going for a rally, I can just picture hollering Booyah, Booyah, Booyah,” said Mick Kardoskee, husband of Ashwaubenon Village President Mary Kardoskee.

    “I think all change, in general, is not always easy and I think this is something when we spoke with people in the community, they didn't always have an identity or where did Bullfrogs come from?” said Fanta.

    “This is something that everybody kind of resonates within the region and something everyone can tie back to.”

    If you've never Booyah, the plan is to have it cooking in a supersized kettle when the season starts next May.

    A merchandise store for the Booyah is also opening on Holmgren Way, across from Bay Park Square, near Gordmans. This Saturday, there will be 90 gallons of free booyah, starting at 11 a.m.

    A USL 2 League soccer team will also play in the new stadium, which will be called Capital Credit Union Park.

    A contest is currently being held for the soccer team’s name and colors.

     

     


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    BROWN COUNTY, WI (WTAQ) - Voter turnout in Brown County was rewarded Wednesday as Project Vote released the winners of the Voter Challenge.

    Municipalities are divided into two size groups, and a trophy is awarded to the municipality in each group that had the highest percentage of registered voters cast a ballot.

    In the Smaller Division, the Town of Lawrence won with 82.8 percent turnout.

    "We have a newsletter that we send out a couple of time of year, and I think this being the sixth election of the year, people are just in the mood of voting," said Clerk-Treasurer Cindy Kocken.

    The Village of Allouez won the larger division award.

    Debbie Baenen, Clerk-Treasurer says social media played a big role.

    "Beginning a month before the election, we post it on our Facebook page almost daily things like how to how to vote, how to get rides to vote, how to vote absentee."

    The turnout in Brown County ranged from 62 percent to 82 percent in each municipality.

    Kelly McBride Moore, Secretary of Project Vote says the field is usually competitive, but the trophy is not the top reward.

    "There is a friendly rivalry that exists, but I also think there is an undercurrent of a serious issue that exists and that is to increase voter turnout."

    Project Vote's goal is to increase informed voter turnout and awareness in Brown County.

    The final voter turnout results were...

    GREEN DIVISION

    Town of Lawrence- 3,058 Votes (82.8 %)

    Town of Green Bay- 1,152 Votes (80.7%)

    Town of Humboldt- 702 Votes (80.4%)

    Town of Pittsfield- 1,522 Votes (79.8%)

    Town of Rockland- 990 Votes (79.6%)

    Town of Scott - 2,056 Votes (79.6%)

    Town of Ledgeview- 4.109 Votes (79.5 %)

    Town of Morrison- 773 Votes (78.9%)

    Town of Eaton- 831 Votes (78%)

    Town of Holland- 812 Votes (77.7 %)

    Town of New Denmark- 840 Votes (77.1%)

    Town of Wrightstown- 1,117 Votes (77.1%)

    Town of Glenmore- 553 Votes (76.5%)

    Village of Pulaski - 1,306 Votes (73%)

    Village of Denmark - 936 Votes (72.2%)

    Village of Hobart- 4.211 Votes (71.6%)

    Village of Wrightstown- 1,186 Votes (68.5 %)

     

    GOLD DIVISION

    Village of Allouez - 7.236 Votes (80.8%) 

    Village of Suamico- 6,709 Votes (79.0%)

    Village of Howard- 9.522 Votes (78.7 %)

    Village of Ashwaubenon- 8,296 Votes (78.4%)

    City of De Pere- 11,968 Votes (77.5 %)

    Village of Bellevue - 7,147 Votes (76.8 %)

    CIty of Green Bay- 39,177 Votes (62.5%)

     

     


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    OSHKOSH, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - Racial tensions reached a boiling point at what is now the University of Wisconsin - Oshkosh

    It happened 50 years ago on what is now referred to as Black Thursday.

    It describes a dramatic protest by 94 African-American students in the office of the university chancellor.

    It ended with the arrest of the students, and their expulsion.

    Some of those student protesters returned to the campus Wednesday.

    On the morning of November 21, 1968, a time when the political winds were changing, the “Oshkosh 94” marched up the stairs of Dempsey Hall.

    They demanded a more racially inclusive campus.

    Jerry Benston, a member of the ”Oshkosh 94” tells FOX 11 people in power weren't listening to the voices of people of color.

    “The climate at that particular time, I think, was highly concerned about why the administration wasn’t listening to students of color, regarding their experiences on campus."

    Benston says as the number of African-American students grew so did the racial divide on campus.

    “I could recall going to a barber shop where we probably should not have gone, especially when we saw the barber and his concerns and reactions to four black students coming in for a haircut.”

    Protesters say their concerns fell on deaf ears; their demands for equal treatment and access to student services, unmet.

    Margaret Hollman, another Oshkosh 94 student says, “He didn’t want to meet with us, and we said we weren’t leaving until he did and the rest is history," referencing administrative members.

    After weeks of built-up anger and frustration, students say vandalism ensued and the knee-jerk reaction, at the time, was to arrest all 94 students and expel them from the university.

    That's something Sylvia Carey-Butler, Associate Vice Chancellor of the university, tells FOX 11 administrators would end much differently today.

    "Students have always changed things in this country. If you go back to the Civil Rights Movement, they’ve always been at the fore so, for me, it would be an opportunity to find out what aren’t we doing and how can we partner to make it better."

    Nearly 50 years to the day later, 34 of the Oshkosh 94 came together to remember a day that remains a historical event.

    But Benston says for many of the 94, their stories didn’t end so well.

    “Without a doubt, those 94 students put their college careers on the line to participate in an event, I think, changed their lives."

    Current UW-Oshkosh students say the times have and are still changing, though.

    "We’ve made some progression. Is it probably the progression that the 94 members wanted us for this time, no, but we’ve made some progression," said Daja Johnson. She's the president of the Black Student Union on campus.

    In the months following Black Thursday, campus administration was approached by the UW-Madison "Black People’s Alliance," asking for the students to be re-admitted.

    Over a dozen of the Oshkosh 94 re-enrolled at U-W Oshkosh.


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    KEWAUNEE COUNTY, WI (WTAQ-WLUK) - When it comes to hunting success, many people say it could come down to having the right equipment for the job.

    That's true for one area man who turned an old school bus into a new hunting shack.

    In a soggy field about a quarter-mile off Kewaunee County Highway X is where John Ferron tells FOX 11 he likes to hunt.

    "Last year, during winter, in this hay field here, there was nothing to count 10, 10 deer in there. There's another rub right there."

    And he says he also has the perfect place to hunt.

    "It's a school bus I got from a salvage yard," said Ferron.

    Yes, a school bus. A 1996 Blue Bird Midwest school bus to be exact.

    "Just watch the steps, they're steep," warned Ferron.

    Ferron created the shack about seven years ago.

    "I wanted something that wouldn't rot out. Because usually a shack, you put them out, and in five, maybe seven years, the water, and they start leaking and they start rotting."

    Ferron says there aren't really any blueprints for a blind of this kind.

    "I cut the bus in four. We used a Sawzall. Took the rivets out with a rivet gun, and took a Sawzall and then ran it around because I pulled the windows out and you can see the framing. So I just ran it along the framing, and cut it out."

    Inside the bus blind, it's now about six by eight feet. The original capacity of 65 is down to about six.

    "We got three chairs and then there's a fold-up chair back here," said Ferron.

    A wood stove is designed to keep the shack warm.

    "It's made out of stainless steel pipe. And it will heat you out of here," said Ferron.

    If it gets too hot, this blind comes with its own emergency hatch.

    Even though it's set off the road a bit, Ferron says the big yellow blind gets plenty of attention from people driving by.

    "They'll pass and then they'll see me and they'll say 'you're the guy that's got the bus for a shack.' I say yup."

    Ferron says it was fun building the blind. He says it's more than just a hunting shack.

    "A lot of times you just come out here and sit and listen. You can hear the birds, and it's quiet. Yet once in a while, you hear a truck on the road or a vehicle on the road, but it's quiet, and it's peaceful.".

    That peace may be broken when hunters return to the shack for the season opener on Saturday.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Before deer hunters wait in their stands for the big one to walk by, they should inspect their heating systems.

    Wisconsin Public Service says a heating system inspection at a hunting cabin or shelter can be as essential as wearing blaze orange clothing.

    Checking your heating systems can avoid a buildup of carbon monoxide, a near-undetectable gas caused by incomplete burning of fuel or improper venting.

    Signs of carbon monoxide poisoning, such as dizziness, headaches, nausea, vomiting, cherry-red lips, pale skin, fluttering heartbeat, and unconsciousness, can lead to severe illness or death.

    Hunters can prevent carbon monoxide poisoning by installing working smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in their shelters. Heating system vents should be checked and cleared of animal nests or other debris.

    Also, those who use portable electric generators should always operate them outdoors to avoid a buildup of carbon monoxide.

    Hunters should also be aware of power lines and electric cables near hunting grounds.

    More than half a million hunters are expected to take to the woods Saturday for the start of Wisconsin's gun deer season.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Green Bay police say a large number of hazardous chemicals has been found inside a Green Bay home. 

    This happened as police were another matter.

    A hazmat team and fire crews are on the scene of the home in the 1200 block of Redwood Drive. 

    Police are asking everyone to avoid the area.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - As gun deer season approaches, officials are concerned about a downward trend in the number of licenses being purchased.

    Gun deer hunting licenses have declined by 5.8 percent over the past 20 years.

    Jason Stein, Research Director at the Wisconsin Policy Forum, joined WTAQ's Morning News with Matt & Earl on Thursday.

    He thinks there's a handful of reasons behind this trend.

    "There's the rise of electronics and the shrinking pool of adult teachers for young people," he explains. "And then there's the lack of access to hunting land as well, so it's a variety of factors at play."

    Officials are concerned this trend might not only continue but also intensify.

    "The people that still hunt are an increasingly older group," says Stein. "People start to reach a point where they physically can no longer pursue the sport and then you start to see this really big dropoff."

    And a drop in licenses means a drop in revenue for the state, which creates an unintended ripple effect.

    "This has been for generations really a big engine to power conservation in the state," explains Stein. "If you're someone that enjoys looking at Trumpeter swans or Bald eagles or you hike on lands that are not state parks, the money that is thrown off from these licenses help to pay for all those programs."

    Stein thinks a solution to this issue doesn't fall squarely on the shoulders of hunters.

    "How do you reach out to other groups that have not necessarily contributed in the same way in the past?" he asks. "This might be people that hike, this might be people that bird watch, this might be people who have a paddle board that they are using on Wisconsin waterways."

    There also is a hope that as technology expands and registration becomes more convenient that trends will reverse.

    "There have been times that I've bought a license and went hunting in an afternoon that I probably would not have done if I could not have quickly purchased that tag over the internet," explains Stein.

    Gun deer season begins throughout the state this Saturday morning.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Representative Mike Gallagher took time to explain concerns he has with the current structure in Washington.

    In his op-ed "How to Salvage Congress" in The Atlantic, Gallagher highlights changes he would like to see made, saying Congress is not built to succeed.

    Gallagher explained on WTAQ's Morning News with Matt and Earl that he is concerned with wasted time in Washington.

    "Congress only works 55 days out of 365," he said. "That is absurd."

    He says during that 55 hours, legislatures spend many hours fundraising and feels more time should be spent lawmaking.   

    "You would force people to start doing their homework while they are here, attend a committee meeting and sit on the house floor when discussions are being held."  

    He says many do not even show up for committee meetings and included ways that the committees can be improved including reducing the number of committees and letting them choose their own chairperson.  

    "You want the action to happen in the committees because that is where people can start to dig into the issues and they can start to understand what the federal government is doing," Gallagher said.   "What I am purposing is a series of reforms that would get power back down to the committees and get Congress working again. " 

    He called the current structure a recipe for shutdowns and gigantic omnibus bills. 

    The complete interview on WTAQ's Morning News with Matt and Earl can be found here.


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    GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - Making A Murderer Part 2 is once again taking much of the country by storm, but some of those involved in the case say be careful what you believe. 

    "Much of what you are being shown on Netflix, especially season one, just didn't happen."

    The prosecutor for the Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey trial Ken Kratz says what you see in the documentary is not exactly what you would have seen in the courtroom.  

    Kratz points out some of the scenes that he was part of had an editing technique known as splicing. 

    "They show the questions, but then they give a different answer on there to make the witness suspicious or sketchy."

    He says having a false portrayal of events in a documentary is disturbing and says he was taken back when he found out that the documentary won an award for creative editing.

    "That is just despicable what was done to the Manitowoc Law Enforcement."  

    He says that is just half of his frustration, he said the other half is how people respond to him personally since he feels he was portrayed as a villain and said that hatred has gone to an extreme level.  

    "Why is it that they feel entitled to threaten my life, or call my wife horrible things or threaten to rape my daughter."  

    He says pictures of his home with his address on the mailbox have been made public on the internet, and he is unsure what the end goal of something like that is.

    "It makes you shake your head and wonder what this world is coming to."

     

    Kratz says while the court case has been a source of controversy, he will continue to defend his name and fight for justice.  

    "The truth will come out. I am going to keep pushing back. Many will not, but I am going to have to because this is left unchecked."  

    The complete interview with Ken Kratz can be found here. 


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    MANITOWOC, WI (WTAQ) - A teenage driver that attempted to flee police and crashed into a tree has been arrested.

    The pursuit between police and the 17-year-old driver began just after 11:30 PM Wednesday night following a traffic stop on S. 21st Street in Manitowoc.

    The car refused to pull over and after hitting a tree the engine compartment started on fire.

    The driver and the two passengers were helped out of the burning vehicle by officers.

     

    The driver, Demetrius Jamal Selman of Milwaukee, was arrested but not formally charged.

    A felony charge of fleeing and causing bodily harm, recklessly endangering safety and unreasonable and imprudent speed have been recommended by deputies against Selman.

    Both passengers, a 17-year-old boy and an 18-year-old woman of Manitowoc were not arrested.


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