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WKEB Local News Archives for 2018-04

Sergeant charged with felony for releasing records


Sergeant charged with felony for releasing records

 

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The state Department of Justice is prosecuting a Taylor County sheriff's detective for releasing records of two unsolved murders to producers of a national television show.

  Sgt. Steven Bowers is accused of felony misconduct in public office, a charge that could send him to prison for 1½ years upon conviction. Under the law, police records are public, but authorities often withhold them on grounds they could compromise an ongoing investigation.

  The State Journal reports the records were given to producers of the Oxygen network show "Cold Justice."

Bowers has admitted to releasing the records, but says he didn't intend to disregard department policies and, in hindsight, realized what he had done was wrong.

  DOJ handled the case for Taylor County prosecutors to avoid a conflict of interest.

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FIRE CALL


FIRE CALL  Monday, April 16

 

    The Medford Area Fire Department was called out Monday afternoon, April 16th, after 4:00 to a multi-unit house fire at 209 South Park Avenue…on the corner of South Park and Cedar Avenue in the city of Medford.   A caller stated that she could see fire in the house.  Fire crews arrived and attempted several times to extinguish the fire which was burning in the attic of the two story home. It was determined to be unsafe situation and an excavator was brought in to help extinguish the fire.  Attempts included entry into the home to pull down the ceiling, and putting holes in the exterior gable ends to try and get water on the fire which was also burning between the shingle and steel layer of the roof.   Medford Fire was also assisted with manpower from the Stetsonville Volunteer Fire Company, The Taylor County Ambulance Service, Medford Police and the Wisconsin State Patrol.  Fire crews returned to their halls after 9:00 Monday night.

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Authorities: Fatal fire was caused by smoking near oxygen


Authorities: Fatal fire was caused by smoking near oxygen

 

  TOWN OF WESTBORO, Wis. (AP) — Taylor County authorities say a fatal house fire in northern Wisconsin apparently started by accident while the victim was smoking a cigarette near her oxygen supply.

  Chief Deputy Larry Woebbeking said in a statement that the sheriff's office got a 911 call just before 3 p.m. Friday from a man who said his home in the Town of Westboro was on fire, and that he and his wife were still inside.

  When deputies arrived, they found 79-year-old Michael Rantanen outside. He told them his wife was still inside. The deputies were unable to enter the home due to the smoke and fire.

  Rib Lake firefighters arrived moments layer and entered the house. They found 71-year-old Susan Rantanen dead in the living room.

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