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NEWS STORIES

Police arrest third and final suspect in Monico burglariesSubmitted: 01/28/2013
Story By Shardaa Gray & WJFW News Team


RHINELANDER - We know the name of a third teenager linked to a series of home break-ins in the Monico area.

Police list 17 year-old Jeffrey Stefonik of Monico as the latest arrest.

We showed the vandalism done to a La Crosse couple's vacation home in a story this past Friday.

Stefonik, 17 year-old Anthony Briggs, and an unnamed 15 year old juvenile -- all of Monico -- face charges related to burglary, theft, and criminal damage to property.

Oneida County Deputy Sara Wolosek says the license plate number helped out a lot with hunting down the burglars.

She knows timing is everything when it comes to preventing this from happening.

"With home security I found that if you make it difficult for people to break in, they're going to find a different place," Wolosek said.

They want something that's going to be easy and fast. Typically it takes four to five minutes to break into a home and if it's going to take longer than that, they're going to move on to the next one."

But a security system might not work for everyone.

Another form of safety is a care taker. That's a person who looks over your house while you are gone for a long period of time. Russ Sleight has been a caretaker for over 25 years.

"As you know up here, Northern Wisconsin sometimes the local authorities can't get there right away," Sleight said. "If you have a care taker or something that I do, I can be there at somebody's house usually 10 to 15 minutes."

If you would like to set up a neighborhood watch group, you can contact Deputy Wolosek at the Onieda Sheriff's Office. That number is 715-361-5100.

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 IN OTHER NEWS

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MADISON - Wisconsin could force drunk drivers to pay in more money to support SafeRide Home programs in the state.

Earlier this week, we told you the state was planning to kick in less money to support county SafeRide Home programs. The program offers free taxi rides home from bars.

A proposal passed by a Capitol committee on Thursday night could help SafeRide Home.

It would add a $50 surcharge to some OWI offenses. That money would go back into SafeRide Home programs.

The proposal is part of the state budget, which has yet to become law.

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RHINELANDER - A plea deal may be close for one of the suspects in an Oneida County murder.

33 year old Latoya Wolf faces a charge of being a party to a murder in Rhinelander. The murder happened in 2003.

The Tomahawk woman is the niece of Kenneth Wells, the man who was killed. Police found Wells dead in the Wisconsin River in 2003.

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Police prepare for 4th of JulySubmitted: 07/03/2015

MINOCQUA - You can find tourists all over the Northwoods already for the holiday weekend.

That means area police departments are busy making sure everyone stays safe.

The Minocqua Police Department has all of their officers working extended hours on July 4th, but the police chief says they worry more about safety than law enforcement.

"[The] 4th of July is more family-oriented," says Minocqua Chief of Police Dave Jaeger. "You have a lot of families down there with their children, so we're down there to make sure that it's a safe environment."

Places like Minocqua will be packed with people this weekend, so police just want to make sure holiday events go on safely.

"We mainly focus on, during the parade, we do the re-route, and we have officers on the parade route in case there's any type of issues or accidents that may occur, that we have to respond to," says Jaeger.

The Minocqua Police Department also works with the chamber of commerce and public works to make sure everything goes smoothly.

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ANTIGO - Low temperatures this time of year can cause problems for some farmers. One Northwoods strawberry farm had to close down for a few hours earlier this week because the berries aren't ripening as fast as normal.

"The cold days this week made the berries ripen much slower than normal," says Andy Merry, owner of Merry's Berries.

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NORTHWOODS - As people start getting ready for the 4th of July, many will camp here in the Northwoods.

The DNR expects almost 3,000 people to camp in the Northern Highland-American Legion State Forest this weekend.

The DNR thinks this will be their best 4th of July yet, with almost all of the campgrounds full.
People say there's nothing better than camping in the Northwoods.

"We like to come up to the Northwoods because it's beautiful and the water's crystal clear," said Prairie Farm resident Peter Fetting. "The other campers are always really friendly, and I've been coming up here for 30 years. This is my 30th year coming up here to camp."

People already got a head start heading out to beaches and on the water Friday. Campers say more people should come enjoy the woods this summer.

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WISCONSIN RAPIDS - A cracked lime kiln has caused a fire that damaged the Verso paper mill in Wisconsin Rapids.

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NORTHWOODS - Many people travel to the Northwoods for the fourth of July. 

That means there can be a lot of extra traffic.

Wisconsin State Patrol makes sure it's ready for the holiday.

It has more people staffed on busy holiday weekends.

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