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Scam Alert: It's NOT Publisher's Clearing HouseSubmitted: 06/22/2013
Scam Alert: It's NOT Publisher's Clearing House
Story By Associated Press

MADISON - Wisconsin consumer protection specialists want you to watch out for a new sweepstakes scam.

Residents across the state say they've been getting calls from people claiming to be from Publishers Clearing House. The scammers tell them they've won a sweepstakes prize and ask for an upfront fee payable with a pre-paid debit card.

The state says potential victims are directed to pick up and pay for a Green Dot MoneyPak debit card from a retail or drug store in order to transfer the fee.

Scammers choose pre-paid debit cards and wire transfers for victims to send them money because the transactions are difficult to trace and nearly impossible to reverse.



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 IN OTHER NEWS

CHIPPEWA FALLS - A World War II veteran who spent more than a year as a prisoner of war is finally being awarded the Purple Heart.

The Leader-Telegram reports that 94-year-old Max Bergen will receive the medal Friday. The Wisconsin man says he's overwhelmed and stunned by the honor.

Bergen was serving on a bomb squadron when he was shot down over Germany in 1944. He was held prisoner at a camp in Austria for 14 months.

Bergen suffered shoulder and ankle wounds in the crash, but he had no paperwork about the injuries because he was immediately taken prisoner. Such documentation is needed for the medal that honors troops injured in combat.

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PRENTICE - Right now, anyone can walk into the Prentice School District building at just about any time.

There's no buzzer system and the front door mostly stays unlocked.

The district is concerned about security, but says a solution is expensive.

That will all change starting this summer.

Prentice was one of the first districts in Wisconsin to get a state grant for school security. It will install a secure entrance, cameras throughout the school, and a new communication system.

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RHINELANDER - More than 10,000 cars pass through one of the area's busiest intersections each day: Highways 8 and 47 on Rhinelander's west side.  But next year, all those cars might need to go around the intersection as construction for a roundabout gets started.

The Department of Transportation is considering two options for traffic flow as crews build an approximately $2 million roundabout.

Option 1: the intersection largely stays open as a "T", but Kemp Street gets closed completely.

Option 2: widened off-ramps detour traffic around the intersection to Boyce Drive or Kemp Street.

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TOMAHAWK - Tomahawk worked for nearly 20 years to buy property to connect the city to nearby trail systems.

But bikers will have to wait another year for the connection.

The city now expects the path to be finished next August or September.

The project got pushed back because the Wisconsin Department of Transportation can't fund its part of the project this year.

Tomahawk is still ready for the addition.

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PELICAN - A group of neighbors in the Town of Pelican found a cluster of caterpillars near their homes on Lake Julia Road.

Last year, the plants hosting the more than 20 monarch caterpillars were mowed over.

This year, the group has a plan to protect the at-risk insects from meeting the same fate.

More than 20 monarch caterpillars have moved into some foliage on Lake Julia Road in Pelican.

"I just thought, 'Oh wonderful, I'll have to protect these,'" said butterfly enthusiast Mary Dork.

Last year, Dork was pleased to find a field of milkweed near her house covered in monarch caterpillars.

"You can always tell where the caterpillars are because of the leaves being eaten," said Dork.

The DNR says monarchs have been at risk of being endangered since 2014.

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MADISON - A judge has sentenced a former University of Wisconsin-Madison student who pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting three female students and choking or stalking two others to three years behind bars.

WKOW-TV reports Dane County Circuit Judge Stephen Ehlke sentenced 22-year-old Alec Cook of Edina, Minnesota, on Thursday to three years in prison and five years of extended supervision.

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TOWN OF BUENA VISTA - A motorcyclist died Thursday night after crashing in Portage County.

The Portage County Sheriff's Office reports the 20-year-old man was riding on County Highway J in the Town of Buena Vista around 7:00 p.m. when he lost control on a curve and went off the road.  The rider hit a utility pole and died at the scene.

Police are not identifying the man until Friday, but they did report he was from the Town of Almond.

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