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NEWS STORIES

RPD Gets New SergeantSubmitted: 03/28/2013
Story By Lyndsey Stemm

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RHINELANDER - An undercover officer will go back to working out in the open in Rhinelander.

This week Chief Mike Steffes made Jake Simkins the new night shift sergeant for the Rhienalnder Police Department. He's been with the Department for five years. But he's been working strictly undercover with the North Central Drug Enforcement Group for the last few years.

"It's something I always wanted to do and I was able to have the opportunity to do it. But I'm looking forward to coming back and working with the officers here and being able to train some of the newer officers and work with the community as well and bring the experience that I have with the police department and the citizens of Rhinelander," says Simkins.

Simkins is also the newest member of the Oneida County SWAT team.

Chief Steffes says the department is in the final stages of hiring another officer. He expects to be fully staffed again by the end of April.

Another officer from RPD will be able to apply to take Sergeant Simkins' place with the NORDEG unit.



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 IN OTHER NEWS
Northwoods biologists consider options to increase average size of panfishSubmitted: 08/26/2014

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NORTHWOODS - Fishermen catch about 60 million panfish per year in Wisconsin.

But the size of those panfish has been getting smaller.

Overharvest seems to be part of the problem on many lakes.

Now, the DNR is proposing a way to increase the size of bluegill, crappie, pumpkinseed, and perch on several lakes.

Their regulation plan comes from decades of data collection.

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Woman dies in Lincoln County crashSubmitted: 08/26/2014

MERRILL - A woman died in a crash near Merrill Tuesday morning.

The Lincoln County Sheriff's office got a call just after six this morning.

The accident happened in the Town of Pine River on County Road G east of French Ridge Road.

The driver was the only person in the car which left the road and crashed. She died of her injuries at the scene.

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Wisconsin DNR plans waterfowl chatSubmitted: 08/26/2014

MADISON - Wisconsin wildlife officials are planning an online chat for waterfowl hunters.

The Department of Natural Resources has scheduled the chat for noon on Aug. 27. Participants can log on through the DNR's website by searching for the keyword ``chat.''

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Federal appeals court hears arguments over Wisconsin gay marriage banSubmitted: 08/26/2014

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CHICAGO - Gay couples in Wisconsin could find out soon if they can legally marry in the state.

Federal appeals judges heard arguments on Wisconsin's gay marriage ban in Chicago Tuesday.

A federal judge struck down the ban in June, but the state is appealing to a higher court. The case has been combined with a similar case coming from Indiana, which also has a constitutional ban on gay marriage.

Camilla Taylor was representing one of the gay couples in the suit. She said the judges were focused on how the ban impacts the children of gay couples.

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Elections board: Primary turnout was 12.7 percentSubmitted: 08/26/2014

MADISON - Turnout for Wisconsin's primary elections two weeks ago was even lower than state election officials predicated.

The state Government Accountability Board had predicted turnout would be 15 percent of eligible voters. The agency released figures Tuesday showing the official turnout for the Aug. 12 elections was 12.7 percent.

The GAB said 552,342 people cast votes out of a voting-age population of 4,348,307.

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Woman faces felony for illegally keeping a gun and selling itSubmitted: 08/26/2014

ONEIDA COUNTY - A 28-year-old Merrill woman faces a felony for illegally keeping a gun. She also sold it to an undercover police officer.

Bonnie Wolff was arrested earlier Tuesday morning for selling a stolen assault rifle officer in Rhinelander. Wolff is a convicted felon. She's not allowed to have a gun under state law.

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Potawatomi withhold payment to WisconsinSubmitted: 08/26/2014

MADISON - The Forest County Potawatomi say they have not made their annual revenue sharing payment to the state of Wisconsin for their casino in Milwaukee because they anticipate the state will owe them money if Gov. Scott Walker approves a casino in Kenosha.

The Potawatomi released a statement Tuesday after Walker's office sent out an update on the casino project that noted the tribe had missed its payment. The tribe says the money has been placed in a segregated account.

The Menominee Tribe wants to open an off-reservation casino in Kenosha to help pull its members out of poverty. A final decision on the project rests with Walker.

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