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New Bill to Help Sexual Assault VictimsSubmitted: 05/05/2013
New Bill to Help Sexual Assault Victims
Story By Associated Press

MADISON - A new bill being circulated in the Wisconsin state Legislature would allow victims of sexual assault to be accompanied by a trained advocate at any step during the criminal justice process.

The legislation's author, Rep. Jim Steineke, a Republican from Kaukauna, says sex offenders are more likely to be brought to justice when an advocate is available to assist the victims

An advocate is a trained individual providing emotional comfort for victims and guiding them through the legal process. Current law bars an advocate from certain activities such as joining victims in meeting with police officers or medical personnel.

At least 11 states have passed similar laws. Gov. Scott Walker has proposed $4 million in his next biennial budget to pay for grants to assist victims.



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THREE LAKES - Some people might spend the day after Thanksgiving finishing off their leftovers, while others are already celebrating the next holiday's festivities with Santa.

Three Lakes celebrated its 22nd Festival of Lights Friday evening.

The festival took volunteers a few days to set up.
"I am so excited. I'm like a kid myself," said volunteer Linda Brainard.

Brainard has volunteered at the Festival of Lights in Three Lakes for the last seven years.

"Making memories for kids is what Christmas is all about," said Brainard with a smile.

Brainard and a handful of other volunteers have spent the last few days hanging up Christmas lights, decorating candy canes and getting Santa's chair all set up.

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RHINELANDER - Parents looking to get their kids out of the house during the holiday break may want to consider going to the library. 

On Friday, more than a dozen kids spent part of their day at the Rhinelander District Library for a free movie showing. The kids also got free popcorn to snack on.

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WISCONSIN RAPIDS - A Wisconsin Rapids woman died after a car crash in Wood County Thursday afternoon.

The crash happened around 2:40 p.m. at the intersection of Pine Haven Court and Ranger Road.

The Wood County Sheriff's Department believes the woman did not wait for a truck with right of way to pass before pulling out at Pine Haven Court and Ranger Road.

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EAGLE RIVER - A business run out of a woman's basement creates a product sold around the world. Annie's Woolens is an online business that mainly sells Christmas stockings made in Eagle River.

Anne Maillette started Annie's Woolens 29 years ago. She and her six employees spend most of the year making a variety of Christmas stockings.


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MADISON - Some deer hit by cars stay along the road longer than people would like.

That's happening as the state adjusts to a new carcass pickup system.

A provision in the state budget transferred responsibility for picking up dead deer from the Department of Natural Resources to the Department of Transportation.

The change took effect in September.

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PARK FALLS - Many families began their Thanksgiving Day with a run this morning. Topping off the holiday with a "trot" around town may not appeal to everyone, but for these families it was a way to spend time with one another.

"Trot now so we can pie later," said Steph Schultz, a runner in the Park Falls Turkey Trot.

Families used the Turkey Trot 5K in Park Falls as a way to bond.

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MERRILL - Most people enjoy a Thanksgiving dinner with family. But the Merrill firefighters spend their Thanksgiving at the station with their second family, their coworkers. Community members stepped in to make sure the firefighters still had a special Thanksgiving while they were working. 

It might be Thanksgiving, but for the Merrill Fire Department, it's just another day

But it is a day with more turkey, stuffing, and pies. 

"We had a couple of community organizations that dropped off meals for us which we're definitely grateful for," said firefighter and paramedic Bryson Cruise.

The job doesn't stop for firefighters and Thanksgiving is no exception. 

So Park City Credit Union and Hands of Hope wanted to thank the firefighters for their service with a home cooked Thanksgiving meal. 

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