ARMSTRONG CREEK - Monday night in Armstrong Creek, dozens gathered to discuss a sex offender potentially being placed in town. Jeffrey LeVasseur was found guilty of first-degree sexual assault of a child in 1995.
The State Department of Health notified members of the town board recently that a property in Armstrong Creek is being considered to house LeVasseur when he is released.
"The meeting tonight was our first response to that and endeavoring to develop a strategy or what is really going to be a challenging if not difficult issue, but it's important to our community," said Armstrong Creek Town Chairman Howard Young.
The board members urged people to write letters to the Circuit Court judge handling the case to argue that a sex offender should not be placed in Armstrong Creek.
The board argued that because Armstrong Creek is a rural town, it would take the police quite some time to respond to any emergency.
Board members also believe that the home on Ziolkowski road would be an inappropriate location.
"At the end of a road that dead ends with two homes where in one there is at least one young lady residing, a daughter, and in another a single woman, and we just think that's an untenable situation," said Young.
The town board will host another meeting next Monday evening at 6 p.m. It plans to share more information and take questions from the public at that time.
CRANDON - Forest County Sheriff's Deputy Craig Justice was justified in shooting and killing 31-year-old Brandon Cude on Jan. 4, Forest County District Attorney Chuck Simono ruled Friday.
The Wisconsin Department of Justice released the results of its investigation in the case, and Simono's decision, Friday afternoon.
The DOJ documents detail how Cude swung a shotgun at Justice at close range. The deputy had just learned Cude had felony warrants against him, and Justice was trying to arrest Cude. Justice fired four shots on the scene, a rural road south of Crandon.
"He didn't get a shot off?" a fellow officer asked Justice after the shooting.
"No. He tried, though. Pulled that sucker out and pointed it right at me," Justice replied in an exchange recorded on a body camera.
MINOCQUA - Only about one-third of students showed up to classes at Lakeland Union High School Friday morning, with many staying home after police verified a shooting threat.
More police officers were on hand at the school Friday morning.
On Thursday evening, Minocqua Police Chief Dave Jaeger confirmed the discovery of shooting threats in the ladies' bathroom near the LUHS auditorium. The threat noted an attack would be similar to Wednesday's school shooting in Parkland, Fla., which killed 17 people.
EAGLE RIVER - Vilas County officers can now respond to active shooter calls better prepared.
All deputies and patrol offices now have access to steel-plated body armor, something only the Vilas County SWAT Team had before.
"We want to make sure our staff are fully protected," said Vilas County Sheriff's Office Captain Gerard Ritter. "I never want to see anything happen to any one of my staff. And we should outfit them with the protection they need."
Before the new body armor, Ritter said officers and deputies only had access to soft body armor.
"The weave material is designed to stop or slow down a projectile," said Ritter.
Officers will still wear the soft-bodied armor every day, but in active shooter situations, officers can now essentially double up on protection, protection once only offered to the SWAT Team.
"There has been an increase in active shooter incidences across the United States," said Ritter.
RHINELANDER - Police think an Oneida County man downloaded hundreds of pornographic pictures of young girls using a private chatroom.
During Danial Smith's preliminary hearing Friday, Smith's attorney asked if police had any way of knowing it was his client who downloaded the more than 700 photos.
The state Department of Justice learned a computer near Rhinelander downloaded the pictures in late 2016 thanks to a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. The internet protocol (IP) addresses from the downloads were linked to Smith's home on County C in the town of Stella.
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