RHINELANDER - The Tri-County Council on Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault wants to raise awareness. It held the second annual chalk walk in Downtown Rhinelander today.
But this sidewalk chalk art had special meaning.
"We invite people to come out and decorate the sidewalk with messages of strength and hope, pictures that represent healing and the belief that victims do not have to be victims, they can be survivors," says Shellie Holmes, Tri-County Center Executive Director.
The council offers advocacy and shelter to anyone in an abusive situation they want out of.
The problem affects more people than you may think.
"Chances are that everyone knows someone, or has themselves, had an experience that wasn't ok with them. So we're hoping to raise awareness. We're hoping that if a victim is walking by they will know that we're talking about them and know that they don't have to suffer in silence; that there is healing," says Holmes.
The Council will hold a re-naming event for its domestic violence shelter Saturday. The open house is from 10:30 AM to 2 o'clock, and the re-dedication is at 11 AM.
ONEIDA COUNTY - Back in November, a 20-year-old Rhinelander man drove and crashed his car after a night of drinking, killing his best friend in the passenger seat.
That driver will now spend nine months in jail.
Randall J. Lego was sentenced in Oneida County Court on Friday.
He faced two charges of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle.
According to court documents, Lego's car hit a power pole on River Road just outside Rhinelander.
The passenger, 23-year-old Jacob Juedes, was dead at the scene. Juedes was a husband and father of a young daughter.
Oneida County Circuit Court Judge Patrick O'Melia said it was a tragic set of circumstances.
"The only aggravating factor here, and when I say that I don't mean to diminish the loss here, but is the result of this accident," O'Melia said. "That is the only thing that is not in your favor, which is the result of the action and the permanency of it."
Some witnesses testified to Lego's character and pleaded with the judge to not give jail time.
But, Judge O'Melia sentenced Lego to nine months in jail and seven years probation.
"There's a lot of people in the community who have strong feelings about what should happen," O'Melia said. "But the court can't sentence on community anger or community empathy."
Lego must also complete 200 hours of community service, for which Judge O'Melia wants Lego to speak to kids and teens about his experience.
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