NEWS STORIES

Secret Cocaine Buys Lead to ArrestsSubmitted: 03/25/2013

Ben Meyer
Executive Producer
bmeyer@wjfw.com


MERRILL - Two secret cocaine deals by a Tomahawk Police informant led to three drug arrests.

We told you about those arrests last week.

On Monday, Jason Echterling was in Lincoln County Court for the first time.

He's one of three people charged with felonies for dealing marijuana, cocaine, and prescription drugs.

An investigator talked about how the informant worked with police.

"We provided him with $275 of currency, also, a body wire and a recorder. At that time, we followed the informant over to the residence," testified Tomahawk Police Investigator John DuPlayee.

Tomahawk Police say Echterling sold the informant cocaine two different times.

That gave them enough evidence to carry out a search warrant and arrest Echterling and two others March 15th.

Judge John Yackel decided there was enough evidence to move forward.

Echterling pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Andrew Prokudowicz and Danielle Stevens will appear in court within the next two weeks.

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VILAS COUNTY - Visitors to one Northwoods courthouse may notice some changes in security.

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MERRILL - More private schools in Northcentral Wisconsin could take part in the statewide voucher program.

Three schools in Lincoln and Marathon counties that aren't already a part of the program are applying this year.

Trinity Lutheran School in Merrill is one of those schools.

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WAUSAU - When you hear the word "gang," you may think of big cities like Chicago or Milwaukee. Unlike what many believe, they may be in your own backyard.

"The prominent one, the OTB, that this male juvenile claimed to be, that one was a known gang group here in the Wausau area," said Wausau Police Officer Houa Lee. "This other gang involving white, Hispanic, or black males, that was probably a hybrid gang that just formed."

Some gangs in Wausau have been around for the past fifteen years. Last week, a middle school boy died when a 15 year old stabbed him twice in the back. Police think the stabbing is gang related.

Recently, kids as young as ten years old are getting involved in gangs. Police say their biggest problem is keeping track of them.

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EAGLE RIVER - The former Lac du Flambeau man who owned and ran an ATM business that appeared in some U.S. and Canadian casinos will serve three years in prison.

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"We've had these cold temperatures, extremely cold temperatures at night, and that's helped to freeze up some of the slush that was on top of the ice," says Conservation Warden Supervisor David Walz. "We saw some extreme conditions last year where people were struggling to get their shacks off even come April."

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