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Man points gun at officer investigating report of shots fired

A Madison man was arrested early Sunday morning after pointing a gun at an officer who was investigating a report of shots fired on the east side. Madison police officers were dispatched to the area of Hudson and Sommers avenues for reports of shots fired around 2:45 a.m., according to a release. White investigating the incident, officers initially talked with Nathaniel W. Homestead, 23, of Madison, a couple blocks away, authorities said. Homestead told police he heard some shots while he was walking home. About 20 minutes later, an officer saw Homestead walking in the 2700 block of Milwaukee Street, according to the release. As the officer stopped his squad car he noticed Homestead had a handgun, which he pointed at the officer and his squad car, officials said. The officer was able to convince Homestead to put the gun down, and he was arrested. Homestead was intoxicated and had a blood alcohol content of 0.22 percent, according to the release. He faces tentative charges of recklessly endangering safety, endangering safety with the use of a dangerous weapon, and for violating bail conditions.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 16:54:42 GMT

Protestors interrupt holiday shopping to demand racial equality

The chants of "black lives matter" have been spoken by countless people across the nation and have spread to Madison. "The real issue is poverty. The real crime is poverty. If anybody is incarcerated or jailed or punished, it should be poverty and not people who have to survive that poverty," said M Adams, protest organizer of the Young Black and Gifted Coalition. Around 100 people gathered Saturday to march from Mineral Point Road to West Towne Mall demanding racial equality, equal pay and protesting against prison labor and crimes of poverty. "This is a moment in our nation's history where there is a need to have folks be able to express their concerns, their frustrations, their resentments against the police and other institutions," Madison Police Chief Mike Koval said. Koval said the Madison Police Department staffed 20 officers to cover the protest. The coalition targeted the mall to address the impacts that low wage work has on communities of color. "There are a lot of black people that are employed here who get paid barely minimum wage. So we are saying directly to the mall, we will not sit by and stand by while you choose to pay us less," Adams said. PHOTOS The group's chants and singing reached the ears of hundreds of people at the mall. Some shoppers even came out of stores to hear the group's message for justice. "Everybody knows we have issues in America right now. So for people to come out together, that's a good thing," shopper Tyshaun Campbell said. But it was their 16 minutes of silence during a die-in, representing 16 seconds where Eric Garner was choked that they hope left an impression that will cross racial lines. "Our liberation and our humanities are bound together. If we are not freed, ultimately their own humanity will not be freed," Adams said.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 18:38:20 GMT

Police investigate death of Madison teen

Police are investigating the death of a Madison teen who died after an incident in downtown Madison early Saturday. The Madison Police Department said officers and the fire department responded to a report of a person jumping or falling from an apartment balcony at the Equinox Apartments, 409 W. Gorham St., at about 12:17 a.m. Police said responders found an 18-year-old man injured outside the apartment building. The teen, a high school student, was taken to a local hospital where he was later pronounced dead. Lt. Tim Strassman said Saturday morning that police did not suspect any criminal act but police were investigating whether the fall was accidental or intentional. It also wasn't clear Saturday morning if drugs or alcohol were a factor in the death, but an autopsy was scheduled. Strassman also said the teen didn't live in the Equinox and his connection to the building wasn't clear, as he didn't know anyone living there. Police withheld the teen's name Saturday pending notification of the family.

Published: Sat, 20 Dec 2014 17:47:09 GMT

Carbon monoxide detectors installed in Lake Delton ice arena

A carbon monoxide detector will now protect players and fans in the Poppy Waterman Ice Arena after a leak sent 80 people to the hospital. The Dells Ducks hockey team and coaches are now back on the ice and getting oxygen treatment and rest. The Dells Ducks team captain, Ian Wood, said he and his teammates were looking for a reason why they were struggling during their game last Saturday. It turned out that they had literally been poisoned. "I've been to the hospital for stitches and that kind of stuff, but never for carbon monoxide," Wood said. The Lake Delton Fire Department quickly worked with the rink and the team to find the source of the leak, which turned out to be a malfunctioning ice resurfacing machine. The machine has been replaced, and eight carbon monoxide detectors have been installed in the lobby and behind the bleachers and benches. "They are going above and beyond what is legally required, because after something like this happened, it scared a few people and we want to make sure nothing like this happens again here," Lake Delton Fire Chief Darren Jorgenson said. State Rep. Gordon Hintz of Oshkosh, who has proposed legislation requiring the detectors in other places, said the incident should spark a look at ice rinks. "While I'm hopeful people who read these headlines will self-monitor their own situations, we need to look at what role the state will have proactively and maybe up the standards to make sure that we don’t have a case like this again," Hintz said. The Dells Ducks are scheduled to play Saturday night in the Poppy Waterman Ice Arena.

Published: Sat, 20 Dec 2014 17:50:09 GMT

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Published: Tue, 10 May 2011 13:51:57 GMT

The News 3 special includes a look back at this year with some of the people and their stories that made us laugh, cry and think. With Mark Koehn and Susan Siman.

Published: Fri, 19 Dec 2014 22:22:07 GMT

DCSO: 1 killed in farm accident Saturday

Dane County sheriff’s officials confirmed someone died in a farm accident Saturday in Morrisonville. Dane County sheriff’s Lt. Alecia Rauch said the incident happened Saturday afternoon on Morrisonville Road. No other information was available Sunday morning.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 17:15:20 GMT

Police: Argument ends in stabbing

Madison police believe alcohol was a factor in an argument that led to a stabbing early Saturday morning, according to a release. Officials said Erin E. Crawford, 30, of Sun Prairie, and a 23-year-old Madison man were in a friend’s apartment at 2 W. Gorham St. just before 3 a.m. when the argument turned into a physical fight. During the incident Crawford pulled out a knife and stabbed the Madison man, according to the release. The man was transported to a hospital for non-life-threatening injuries to his thigh and hand. Crawford faces tentative charges of recklessly endangering safety, possession of switchblade knife and carrying a concealed weapon.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 15:47:11 GMT

2 attack, severely beat off-duty State St. bar bouncer

An off-duty bouncer at a Madison bar suffered severe face injuries after he was beaten by customers early Saturday. Madison police said the 21-year-old Madison man entered the restroom at The City Bar on State Street at about 1:15 a.m. The off-duty bouncer told police he saw two men in the bathroom and one was ingesting a white powdery substance. The off-duty worker told the men he was going to get the manager and the two men began attacking him. The bouncer was severely beaten, according to the report. He was taken to the hospital and treated for a broken nose, fractured orbital socket and a facial laceration that required sutures. The two attackers fled out the front entrance with three other men, police said. The attackers were described as Asian, between 22 to 23 years old with thin builds. They were between 5 feet 4 inches and 5 feet 7 inches tall and one was slightly taller than the other. One was wearing a sweater and the other a white plaid shirt.

Published: Sat, 20 Dec 2014 20:44:15 GMT

Barfing dog, kicking giraffe top odd news

A dog that barfed up its owner's wedding ring missing for five years and an angry giraffe that kicked a trespasser in its pen at the Madison children's zoo topped news of the odd in Wisconsin this year. Tucker and Wally, the dog and giraffe, weren't the only animals making news. There was also the heartwarming story of A.J. the hawk who was rescued in July after it collided with a vehicle north of Chippewa Falls and survived a 140-mile journey stuck in the vehicle's grill. A curious bear that wandered into a parking garage beneath the Wausau courthouse was also safely captured and released back into the woods.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 18:37:18 GMT

Former UW football recruit violates criminal sentence

A former top Wisconsin high school football player violated his criminal sentence, going unexcused from his work-release job and also using Twitter and Instagram without permission. Dominic Cizauskas was convicted in June by a Dane County jury of sexually assaulting a University of Wisconsin-Madison student during his official recruiting visit to campus last December. He was subsequently sentenced to 12 months in jail. Cizauskas requested to serve his time close to his family in Mukwonago and was allowed to transfer from Dane County to Waukesha County, where he was afforded Huber privileges, allowing him to work during the day and return to the jail each night. A Department of Corrections report from last month shows Cizauskas on three separate occasions had unaccounted for time when he was supposed to be at work, and on two other occasions, he was found using social media websites like Twitter and Instagram without permission. "After conviction Cizauskas was given the privilege of Huber while he served conditional jail time, however he chose to disregard the rules of the Huber facility," wrote DOC Agent Ryan Barnes in a report dated Nov. 4. "Cizauskas' continued disregard for the expectations placed on him by society and supervising authority show he can pose a significant risk to the community." "Dominic Cizauskas accepts no responsibility for his actions, either the original offender or violations, and continues to blame others," said Barnes. Joy Staab, the director of public affairs for the Wisconsin Department of Corrections, told News 3 that Cizauskas' Huber privileges were revoked in Waukesha County and he was sent back to Dane County to complete the rest of his sentence. Staab said Dane County did not revoke his Huber privileges for the rules violations in Waukesha County, and Cizauskas has now been sent to Walworth County for the remainder of his jail term. He does have work-release privileges in Walworth County. After the Cizauskas recruitment, the UW-Madison football program changed its recruiting policies to no longer let freshman players serve as student-hosts for recruits. Recruits will also not be allowed to visit other students on campus whom they might know from their hometown. Also, representatives of the Dean of Students Office will discuss sexual assault with all UW teams before the start of the 2014-15 seasons.

Published: Fri, 19 Dec 2014 21:40:05 GMT

4 children hurt in Milwaukee house fire

Milwaukee police say four children are in critical condition after a house fire. The fire broke out on the home's first floor shortly after 5 p.m. Saturday. A 22-year-old man had to jump from the second story to escape the blaze. He's being treated for non-life-threatening injuries. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports firefighters rescued two unconscious children from the house and two other children escaped on their own. A firefighter also was hurt. All six of the injured were taken to hospitals. Deputy Milwaukee Fire Chief Aaron Lipski says the two unconscious children were rescued "from one of the absolute worst areas they could have been in." Lipski says both children suffered severe smoke inhalation. The cause of the fire remains under investigation. Damage is estimated at $250,000.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 17:09:25 GMT

Baraboo woman chosen to decorate White House

Between the tree, the tinsel and all those stringing lights, holiday decorating can be a daunting task – and for one Baraboo woman, that task took on presidential proportions this season. Nancy Meiller recently retired after teaching middle school history for the past 32 years, but she decided she wasn’t quite finished with the subject. After watching an HGTV special on volunteers who help decorate the White House, she applied for the 2014 season. “I just kind of forgot about it, you know?” she laughs. “It was kind of a lark, I didn’t think I’d get chosen.” Chosen she was, out of more than 1,000 applicants. Meiller, the only Wisconsinite out of 106 volunteers from 37 states, flew out to D.C. over the Thanksgiving weekend to spend a week decorating. Visiting the White House would be an exciting trip for anyone – for a history buff like Nancy, it was the trip of a lifetime. "I really like decorating for Christmas, and I've got a passion for history and a passion for teaching history, so those combined together, this was just a fantastic experience,” she says.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 15:17:19 GMT

Republicans fighting to hang onto Senate -- in 2016

Republicans are planning to use their newfound Senate majority to challenge President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats come January. But they also will have to defend their seats as they face a much tougher election map two years from now and the prospect of returning to the minority. In November 2016, Republicans will be defending 24 seats and Democrats 10. Seven of the GOP seats are in states that President Barack Obama won with 50 percent or more of the vote in 2012. It's a stark reversal from this past November, when Democrats were crushed on Election Day. It will be a tough climb for Democrats to make up those losses. But they sound eager about their chances in Wisconsin, Pennsylvania, Illinois and elsewhere.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 14:38:01 GMT

Whitewater wins NCAA Div. 3 football title, 43-34

Matt Behrendt threw for 365 yards and four touchdowns and the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater continued its mastery of Mount Union in the NCAA Division III championship game with a 43-34 victory Friday night. The Warhawks (15-0) extended their winning streak to 32 games, the longest in the nation, and beat the Purple Raiders for the sixth time in the last seven meetings -- all in the Amos Alonzo Stagg Bowl. Behrendt finished 26 for 38 for 365 yards with two interceptions. Jake Kumerow caught eight passes for 130 yards and a score, and Dennis Moore ran for 74 yards and caught two passes for 108 and a touchdown. Mount Union (14-1), the winner of 11 national titles, was appearing in the game for the 10th consecutive season, and arrived having admittedly changed some things up on defense after a 52-14 loss to the Warhawks last year in the title game. On the field, however, Whitewater had Behrendt, and for the second year in a row, he outplayed the Gagliardi Trophy winner, Kevin Burke, in the game that mattered most.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 00:14:31 GMT

Milwaukee officials call protest 'breach of trust'

Milwaukee authorities say a protest that blocked traffic on Interstate 43 was a breach of trust. More than 70 people were arrested Friday after marching onto the highway as part of a demonstration protesting the death of a black man who was shot by Milwaukee police in April. On Saturday, Milwaukee Police Chief Edward Flynn called the highway disruption "a clear breach of trust that had a direct, dramatic and negative impact on the lives of literally hundreds of thousands of Milwaukeeans." The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that that Flynn said protesters will be arrested if they break the law. Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke said the protest was "mob rule" and it was important for authorities to get participants off the highway. Dozens were still in custody Saturday afternoon.

Published: Sun, 21 Dec 2014 00:21:46 GMT

Road salt shortage hits snow-removal contractors

It's not hard to remember last year's harsh winter, but private construction companies are still feeling the aftereffects. Contractors are battling a shortage of road salt this season, on top of skyrocketing prices. Bill Yoss has owned his own construction business for the last four decades and said he has never had a problem getting salt in the past, or had to pay as much as he  is this year to stock salt. "We've seen it double since last year, and normally we would have a couple tons a year. We got less than 25 percent of that this year, which left us really short and scrambling for salt," Yoss said. Yoss was shorted by 150 tons of salt and had to pay the same price per ton for the amount from Morton Salt. It forced him to find an additional supply from Venezuela, to be able to provide snow removal this year to shopping centers and areas like the Eclipse Center in Beloit. A shortage of salt means Yoss is not the only one paying more this year. The city of Janesville has also had to pay the cost for the shortage of supplies. "It went up 15 percent from last year. Salt is a pretty large part of our budget anyway and that doesn't help," said John Whitcomb, operations director for the city of Janesville. The city uses 4,000 to 5,000 tons of salt a season. This year the city paid close to $66 per ton. It's an increase Whitcomb has continued to see rise since he started his position in 2001, when  he was able to buy salt for $26. Despite the increase in road salt prices, it's the private contractors Whitcomb said are being affected the most. A reality Yoss knows too well. "What I think they are doing this year is saving it for the municipalities, to make sure that they have enough, because I've talked to some of those guys and they have no problem getting it," Yoss said. However, with not enough salt to go around, Yoss is hoping this winter is kind to both the roads and his business. "We've got enough salt now, so if we have a winter like last winter we will be okay. If it's worse than last winter, we might be in trouble," he said. Whitcomb said he is also hoping for a mild winter to save some of the salt the city purchased this year and use it toward next season in an effort to save money in the long run.

Published: Sat, 20 Dec 2014 20:52:06 GMT

Conservative group says Walker probe improper

The conservative group at the heart of the investigation into Gov. Scott Walker's 2012 recall campaign said the state election board improperly plowed ahead with its probe of the governor. The Wisconsin Club for Growth sued the Government Accountability Board in Waukesha County Circuit Court in May, but its complaint was unsealed Friday at the group's request. The group alleges top officials of the government ethics watchdog launched the John Doe investigation without getting approval from its six-member board. A board spokesman referred a request for comment to an attorney, who did not return a request for comment. The Wisconsin State Journal reported that Republicans in the state Legislature have been calling for changes to the Government Accountability Board.

Published: Sat, 20 Dec 2014 21:44:39 GMT

Explosion in Sauk County caused by firearms practice

An explosion heard in Sauk County Friday was caused by citizens practicing with firearms. Sauk County Sheriff Chip Meister said the department received a report of a loud explosion and black smoke at about 12:10 p.m. in the area of County Road P and Birchwood Road in the town of Delton. The sheriff's department said deputies found the source of the explosion nearby, where citizens were shooting an exploding target. Meister said the citizens were using a Tannerite brand target that explodes to indicate a hit in target practice. The citizens had used more than the FBI's recommended amount of the explosive. "The recommended use range of Tannerite is in one pound increments," Meister said in the release. "It appears that the citizens used well in excess of this amount." The incident was still under investigation Friday afternoon but the sheriff said charges were not expected. The Sauk County Sheriff's Office, Lake Delton police and fire departments and the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources investigated the case Friday.

Published: Fri, 19 Dec 2014 20:37:08 GMT

Carbon monoxide detectors installed in Lake Delton ice arena

A carbon monoxide detector will now protect players and fans in the Poppy Waterman Ice Arena after a leak sent 80 people to the hospital. The Dells Ducks hockey team and coaches are now back on the ice and getting oxygen treatment and rest. The Dells Ducks team captain, Ian Wood, said he and his teammates were looking for a reason why they were struggling during their game last Saturday. It turned out that they had literally been poisoned. "I've been to the hospital for stitches and that kind of stuff, but never for carbon monoxide," Wood said. The Lake Delton Fire Department quickly worked with the rink and the team to find the source of the leak, which turned out to be a malfunctioning ice resurfacing machine. The machine has been replaced, and eight carbon monoxide detectors have been installed in the lobby and behind the bleachers and benches. "They are going above and beyond what is legally required, because after something like this happened, it scared a few people and we want to make sure nothing like this happens again here," Lake Delton Fire Chief Darren Jorgenson said. State Rep. Gordon Hintz of Oshkosh, who has proposed legislation requiring the detectors in other places, said the incident should spark a look at ice rinks. "While I'm hopeful people who read these headlines will self-monitor their own situations, we need to look at what role the state will have proactively and maybe up the standards to make sure that we don’t have a case like this again," Hintz said. The Dells Ducks are scheduled to play Saturday night in the Poppy Waterman Ice Arena.

Published: Sat, 20 Dec 2014 17:50:09 GMT