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NEWS STORIES

Teacher accused of selling pot got 'glowing recommendations' during hiring processSubmitted: 11/14/2013
Story By Lex Gray

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RHINELANDER - Police searched a Rhinelander High School teacher's house because they thought he had been stealing equipment from the school.

They say that's when they found 66 marijuana plants and a sophisticated grow operation. Since we reported that story last week, people have been asking how Joshua Juergens got hired in the first place.

"We got glowing recommendations," said superintendent Kelli Jacobi. "I don't know that those were all completely honest."

Superintendent Kelli Jacobi says the district did a background check on Juergens. That check turned up a record, as does a simple online search of Wisconsin's online court records.

In 2010, Juergens was convicted of disorderly conduct. In 1997, he was convicted of marijuana possession, both misdemeanors.

"We did know that there was a drug issue, a misdemeanor, I believe he was 19," Jacobi said. "We look at patterns in behavior. If something is a recurring thing in a background check, that definitely signals a problem."

But Jacobi says she can't factor certain convictions into the hiring process.

For now, Juergens is on unpaid leave from his teaching job. He'll stay in the Oneida County Jail unless he can come up with his $2,000 bail or get into a treatment facility.

He returns to court November 21.

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 IN OTHER NEWS
Local expert offers tips on keeping shrubs and trees healthySubmitted: 08/20/2014

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NORTHWOODS - You may need help keeping your shrubs and trees in shape for the fall.

Many people were forced to buy new trees and shrubs because they didn't survive the winter. Experts at Hanson's Gardening Village told us about a few trees that are most vulnerable to the winter.

"We had some in our own nursery here that we had to dispose of this spring," said Hanson's Garden Village Co-owner Brent Hanson. "A lot of people saw this effect where you get the leafing out like you would normally expect in the spring and then all of the sudden, all the little leaves turn brown the tree seems to be dead. In the worst case scenario, the tree is dead and it seems to me from what I've seen is that maples were most affected and unfortunately, fruit trees."

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Looking for a brand new restaurant to try?Submitted: 08/20/2014

RHINELANDER - Do you find yourself looking for new places to eat out?
Well, Tula's Cafe recently added a brand new location in the Northwoods.
We found out what makes them unique, in our latest helping of 'Morning Meals with Marisa.'

Tula's recently reopened in Rhinelander. This is their second location and the manager told us so far, so good.

Tula's manager Lana Knack explains, "They said it's great to have a new restaurant choice to go to up in the Northwoods. Tula's is very successful in Minocqua, so we model everything that they do and it's worked very well."

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Concussion Awareness for High School SportsSubmitted: 08/20/2014

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RHINELANDER - Football season kicks off this Friday for many high schools across the state.

But one concern from year to year is how to prevent concussions in high school contact sports.

When sport seasons begin, so does important concussion testing. Rhinelander has two tests.

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ACT Exam mandatory for Wisconsin students this yearSubmitted: 08/20/2014

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EAGLE RIVER - College bound high school students in the Midwest need to take the ACT.

One Northwoods high school has seen an increase in how many students are taking the test.

About 60% of students at Northland Pines High School took the ACT last year, compared to about 53% that took it in 2010.

"We're increasing that number every year, doing our best to do that and encourage students to take this test," says Northland Pines High School Principal Jim Brewer. "It's not only just for students that are going to college, it's for anybody to take this assessment and see where they're at."

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Teens arrested after high speed chaseSubmitted: 08/20/2014

LINCOLN AND PRICE COUNTIES - Police arrested three teens after a high speed chase across two northern Wisconsin counties.

Police say the teens drove as fast as 110 miles per hour Tuesday night during a 30 mile chase through Lincoln and Price counties.

The chase began when an officer was doing a security check on a Tomahawk business and noticed a suspicious car with three people inside.

The car sped away down Highway 8 and deputies followed.

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Wisconsin water supplies deal with two contaminants during 2013Submitted: 08/20/2014

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WISCONSIN - Wisconsin keeps high standards for clean drinking water. On a yearly basis, they do a good job at meeting that standard, but during 2013, more water supplies were found with one of two contaminants.

One contaminant, nitrate, was found in more than double the amount of water supplies during the year compared to 2012. The 56 public water supplies found with high nitrate levels is a small number out of the thousands of water supplies in the state, but it can still be a big problem.

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Man pleads not guilty of killing his wifeSubmitted: 08/20/2014

PORTAGE COUNTY - A Wisconsin Rapids man pled not guilty yesterday to killing his wife decades ago. 55-year-old Joseph Reinwand made the plea in Portage County court.

Pamela Reinwand was 19 when she died in 1984. She was shot in the head.

Police originally thought it was a suicide. but family members and fellow inmates told police they'd heard Reinwand confess to killing her.

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