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NEWS STORIES

Marathon County Launches Drug Abuse CampaignSubmitted: 05/07/2013
Story By Lex Gray

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WAUSAU - Michael Dixon died in a car crash.

Richie Vue faces charges for killing his girlfriend, Kou Thao for shooting, beheading, and disemembering a man.

We've told you about these three stories before - they happened in Marathon County, but they have more in common than that.

All three involve opiate drug abuse and represent a much bigger problem in the community.

Today, law encorcement and other groups launched the "Pushback Against Drug Abuse" campaign in Wausau.

Community leaders want people to know that drugs like heroin, meth, and oxycontin don't affect just the user - they affect EVERYONE.

"Overall as we compare and track our service calls, we are about 14 percent ahead compared to last year," Wausau Police Chief Jeff Hardel said. "So it's just generated so much more work for all of our officers and detectives. It's hard too keep up at this point."

Hardel says competition among drug dealers is increasing.

They're buying or stealing guns to intimidate each other.

That's why responding to a "shots fired" call is now common for Wausau Police.

"We've had so many of our high profile cases, homicides, aggravated assaults, robberies, etc., that have a very strong drug influence," Hardel said. "In other words, they're committing a crime because of their drug addiction."

The Pushback Against Drug Abuse campaign will continue at a June 4 meeting.

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 IN OTHER NEWS
Community rallies to help one of its ownSubmitted: 10/30/2014

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CRANDON - Kim Teschner looks like a healthy 28-year-old, but the mother of two from Crandon had the scare of her life this past July.

"It slowly started from my face and then just travelled down the whole right side of my body," Teschner explained.

Teschner became numb. She couldn't walk by the time she got to the emergency room.

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Walker leads Burke in latest poll; both hit the campaign trailSubmitted: 10/30/2014

MADISON - Democrat Mary Burke is back on the campaign trail on the heels of a poll showing her trailing Republican Gov. Scott Walker by 7 points.

Burke was scheduled to campaign Thursday in Port Washington. Walker is starting his day in the Wausau area, then going east to Green Bay, Manitowoc and Sheboygan. Sen. Ron Johnson was campaigning with Walker.

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Defense rests in Wisconsin Rapids homicide trialSubmitted: 10/30/2014

WISCONSIN RAPIDS - The attorneys for a 55-year-old Wisconsin Rapids man accused of killing his daughter's ex-boyfriend have rested their case after two days of witness testimony.

Joseph Reinwand is charged with first-degree intentional homicide in the 2008 shooting death of 35-year-old Dale Meister. Reinwand decided not the take the stand Wednesday in his own defense.

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DNR reminds hunters to check boundaries Submitted: 10/30/2014

WISCONSIN - Wisconsin wildlife leaders want to remind deer hunters to learn the boundaries of new management units by reviewing county lines.

The DNR reduced the number of traditional management units this year from 134 to 72 units based on county boundaries in an effort to simplify the hunt.

The agency says hunters need to have a good idea where county lines are so they know where units begin and end.

The new units don't follow roads or rivers like they did in the past.

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Clothing drive organizers need helpSubmitted: 10/30/2014

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ANTIGO - A clothing drive will help hundreds of families in Langlade County stay warm this winter. Salvation Army and AmeriGas will run the Keeping Our Community Warm clothing drive. The program clothed 350 people last year, but organizers say they'll need more clothes this year.

"We're always open for someone to volunteer their time," said AmeriGas Customer Service Rep. Julie Brandt. "Especially to go to the donation boxes and bring the coats to AmeriGas."

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Wisconsin GAB predicts 2.5 million to vote in 2014 election Submitted: 10/30/2014

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MADISON - Wisconsin election officials are predicting a little more than half of the state's voting-age population will go to the polls next week.

The Government Accountability Board officials said Thursday it expects about 2.5 million people will vote Tuesday. That's about 56.5 percent of the 4.3 million people in Wisconsin old enough to vote.

GAB officials say the turnout should be similar to the 2012 gubernatorial recall election, which saw about 57.8 percent of the voting-age population go to the polls. The 2012 presidential election, by contrast, saw 70 percent turnout.

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Substitute teachers will get paid more.Submitted: 10/30/2014

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RHINELANDER - Substitute teachers working for the Rhinelander School District will get paid more.

The district superintendent thinks the pay increase will make it easier for them to find substitutes. The district has had a difficult time finding subs since they started paying substitute teachers less than other districts.

Last year, they changed long term sub pay from 190 dollars to 135 dollars per day.

Some local subs started working for other districts.

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