Ashland County rejects wrongful death claim for 14-year-old killed by sheriff's deputySubmitted: 03/21/2018
ASHLAND COUNTY - The Ashland County Board has rejected a $9.5 million wrongful death claim from the family of a 14-year-old boy who was fatally shot by a sheriff's deputy.

The deputy killed Jason Pero after he was called to the Bad River Indian Reservation to deal with an individual walking down the street with a knife last November. Prosecutors determined the fatal shooting was justified following an investigation by the state Department of Justice.

A claim is often a precursor to a lawsuit against a government body. Ashland County Corporate Counsel Matthew Anich says the claimants have a six-month statute of limitations in which to file a lawsuit.

The Ashland Daily Press says the boy's parents, Holly Gauthier and Jason Pero, allege the state and sheriff's department failed to properly train the deputy in the use of deadly force.

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RHINELANDER - The ground won't thaw for another month or so, but you can start planning your garden now.

You'll have to wait until mid-May to plant flowers, but you can get away with some vegetable seeds.

Bare root plants are also a good option for early-spring.

Those include apple trees, blueberry and raspberry bushes.

"We can help out here when you come out and make sure you get everything you need to get started.

It's mostly getting it established in the ground and you can just let it grow, says Beth Hanson.

Hanson Garden Village's Spring Preview is this Saturday and open to the public.

If you want to find out more about their spring planting classes, click below.

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MINOCQUA - People don't often realize what is going through police officers' heads when they arrive on a scene. Whether it's a traffic stop or a robbery, a lot of training and preparation comes before an officer can respond. The Minocqua Police Department holds a Citizen's Academy to show people in the community just what it takes to be a police officer. 

Michelle Littleton enrolled in the Citizen's Academy four years ago to see what a day in the life of an officer is really like. 

"I wanted to see behind the scenes to what they're doing each and every day," said Littleton, of Hazelhurst.
She learned there is a lot more to an officer's job than the public might realize. 

"They have a small window of opportunity to take care of themselves and protect themselves," said Littleton.
Now in its fourth year, the Citizen's Academy gives people in the community a hands on learning experience with situations like traffic stops, OWIs, and defense and arrest tactics. 

The eight-week course is a shorter version of what new officers learn in the Police Academy. Sometimes it can help people find out if a career in law enforcement is something they want to pursue.

David Wellman decided to take this year's course to see how law enforcement in Minocqua differs from in a big city. 

"I wanted to see if the smaller town police the training is the same, how they interact with the public and how things are done on a day to day basis up here with a smaller department," said Wellman, of Hazelhurst. 

Tuesday's lesson showed the students how dispatch works and how officers respond to a traffic stop. 

One of Littleton's favorite lessons was about how officers utilize their guns in a dangerous situation. 

"They set up a scenario, which was like a movie screen, where you'd actually walk into a scene and you had to determine whether or not to use lethal force," said Littleton. 

While the Citizen's Academy helps people understand what a day in the life of an officer looks like, it's also beneficial for the teachers to meet members of the community.

"It also helps me and some of the other officers. I get to meet some of the people I might not get to meet on a regular basis. It builds that trust and community relationships a lot more, I think," said Minocqua Police Officer Daniel Littleton.

The academy is held every year from March until May. Classes meet Tuesdays from 6-10 p.m. for eight weeks. 

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MINOCQUA - A Minocqua store will stock up on more locally sourced food products this spring and summer season. The Wild Berry Market teamed up with a new community-supported agriculture group, or CSA.

The Lake Superior CSA combines local farmer products into vegetable, meat, and fruit boxes.

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RHINELANDER - Old kitchen cabinets got a fresh coat of paint Tuesday morning in the back of an old building that Kate Bauman is bringing new life to.

"We really kind of want to make our home here," Bauman said.

Over the last few weeks, Bauman and her husband Elvis transformed 146 North Brown Street in Rhinelander from office space into a storefront for their store "Unique Creations."

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MADISON - The entire state of Wisconsin will be placed under quarantine for emerald ash borer.

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection announced the quarantine will take effect March 30th.

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MADISON - The Wisconsin Senate has unanimously approved an $80 million juvenile justice overhaul plan that would close the troubled Lincoln Hills prison by 2021 and replace it with smaller regional facilities.

The Senate voted without any debate Tuesday to pass the plan, which largely mirrors what the Assembly unanimously approved last month.

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MENOMINEE, MI - Federal officials are raising objections to a proposed open-pit mine in Michigan's Upper Peninsula.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency wants answers to questions about a wetlands permit application filed by Aquila Resources Inc. The Canadian company plans to mine gold, zinc and copper near the Menominee River on the Michigan-Wisconsin line.

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MADISON - A tax break package designed to stop giant papermaker Kimberly-Clark from eliminating 600 jobs in northeast Wisconsin appears to be dead in the state Legislature.

Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said Tuesday he is hopeful that Gov. Scott Walker's administration can continue working with the company and possibly take action without needing the Legislature to pass a bill.

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