Four-Legged Officer to Join Tomahawk Police ForceSubmitted: 02/21/2013
Story By Lyndsey Stemm

TOMAHAWK - People in Tomahawk can meet the newest member of the police force in late spring. But the new officer will be patrolling on four legs. The department plans to bring in a new canine unit.

They don't need to worry about the search for a handler. Three qualified officers want the job.

The department decided to invest in the canine to help officers out in a few important ways.

"The dog will certainly alert and see things an officer might miss during a search of a vehicle, or a canine alert for narcotics. As far as missing persons or that type of situation, I mean a dog could track them much faster, much quicker, than we can," says Detective John DuPlayee.

Chief Al Elvins says the community has responded well and made generous donations.

But they still have a way to go to reach their $45,000 goal.

People can buy a replica of the police department's patch for $5, or this collectors coin for $10.

To buy them, or to make a donation, people can stop by the department or mail a check.

Elvins wants to be able to introduce the dog to the community by June.

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MILWAUKEE - A published report says unauthorized improvements have been made to a footpath on state land that a donor to Gov. Scott Walker has been trying to buy.

A spokesman for business executive Elizabeth Uihlein acknowledged that workers at her adjoining property may have cleaned up the trail slightly.

But the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel (http://bit.ly/1Z18WU8 ) reports those who have seen the trail say the improvements are significant.

Uihlein is seeking to buy 1.75 acres along Rest Lake, where the footpath is located. But a tentative deal with the Department of Natural Resources was put on hold after critics raised questions.

A DNR spokesman says the agency inspected the site on Thursday and found an "established trail." He declined to say whether the department had talked to Uihlein or her representatives.

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MERRILL - Merrill residents might have heard a lot of music in town today.

Merrill High School hosted the Merrill Marching Invitational. Three high school marching bands took over the football field at Merrill High School Sunday.

Antigo, D.C. Everest, and Merrill high schools all showcased their musical creativity.

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EAGLE RIVER - Eagle River hosted its 36th annual Cranberry Fest during October's first weekend.

Organizers say the weather this year brought in many more visitors.

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NEKOOSA - People in Nekoosa could go back in time this weekend.

Volunteers at Pointe Basse recreated a historical camp that portrayed the lives of people from the 1700s and early 1800s.

Volunteers from all across the U.S. had a piece of history to share.

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RHINELANDER - Harvest Hoedown started Saturday at noon at the Woodpecker Bar and Grill in Rhinelander.

The event featured a hay maze, horse-drawn carriage rides, food, and live music all afternoon.

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MERRILL - Firefighters need to be prepared to rescue people from more than just fires.

People can get trapped in tree stands, water, or a tight spot. 

Local fire departments respond to those emergencies.

Merrill's first Citizen's Fire Academy learned about these specialized rescues Thursday night.

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WOOD COUNTY - Two people who stole a UTV led police on a wild chase early Friday morning. Friday night, those suspects were still on the run.

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