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Challenger’s tactics trigger early support for Wolfgram PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by BILL SCHANEN IV   
Wednesday, 06 February 2013 19:50

Voiland’s continued focus on recall petition prompts chiefs, sheriff to back judge now

    Law enforcement officials in Ozaukee County announced their support for Circuit Court Judge Tom Wolfgram this week in an unusually early endorsement triggered by the controversial campaign of challenger Joseph Voiland.

    Voiland, a 40-year-old lawyer and Town of Grafton resident, has attacked Wolfgram, an 18-year veteran of the Ozaukee County Branch II bench, on a single issue — his signing of the Gov. Scott Walker recall petition. Last month Voiland’s campaign purchased several internet domains that include Wolfgram’s name and launched the website tomwolfgram.com, which displays the recall petition the judge signed.

    The chiefs of all police departments in the county, as well as Sheriff Maury Straub, endorsed Wolfgram in a letter to the editor of Ozaukee Press this week — two months before the April 2 election —  because, some said, they want to make sure Voiland’s recall petition tactic doesn’t interject partisan politics into a nonpartisan race and distract voters from Wolfgram’s exemplary record as a judge.

    “Judge Wolfgram has demonstrated the qualities of a person seeking a judicial position — honesty, integrity and compassion,” the chiefs and sheriff wrote in the letter.

    The Voiland campaign’s purchase of domain names such as judgewolfgram.com and its creation of a website that is not run by its namesake but rather his challenger has raised ethical questions.

    “Not being much of a high-tech sort of guy, I’m not exactly sure what to think about this,” Straub said. “Maybe it’s astute, or maybe it’s just dirty politics.”

    Ozaukee County District Attorney Adam Gerol, a Wolfgram supporter, said he doesn’t know of any law that prohibits a candidate from creating a website in an opponent’s name and using it to campaign against him, but others said there are ethical considerations at stake.

    “Even candidates for judicial posts are bound by the ethical guidelines of the Supreme Court rules,” said Branch III Circuit Court Judge Sandy Williams, who was the county’s longtime district attorney before being elected to the bench in 2009.

    Wolfgram said he had intended to use at least one of the domains purchased by the Voiland campaign for his website.

    “We hired someone to set up a website for us and they said all the names we wanted had already been purchased,” he said. “They (the Voiland campaign) exploited my name before I could use it for my website.

    “It certainly surprised me.”

    Instead of judgewolfgram.com, which was purchased by Voiland’s campaign, Wolfgram settled for reelectjudgewolfgram.com.

    “I’m disappointed something like this happened in the context of a nonpartisan judicial campaign, but I continue to focus on my performance as a circuit court judge over the last 18 years and my longstanding record in the community.”

    Voiland defended his campaign’s website tactic, saying it is a legitimate way to disseminate information about a candidate for public office.

    “Anyone who says this is unfair politics is just unhappy that the information is out there,” he said.

    Voiland noted that the tomwolfgram.com website includes a statement that makes it clear his campaign is responsible for the content.

    Underneath an image of the recall petition on the website is a statement that reads, “This page is paid for by Friends of Joe Voiland, Jake Curtis treasurer, and not by Judge Tom Wolfgram or any other candidate or committee.”

    Curtis, a lawyer and Ozaukee County supervisor from Grafton, is listed as the  administrative contact for at least two of the domains that include Wolfgram’s name, according to the web hosting company GoDaddy.com. Curtis did not return messages left for him Tuesday.

    Website aside, Saukville Police Chief Bill Meloy said, the recall petition doesn’t have any relevance in the judicial race.

    “I certainly didn’t sign the recall petition, but I don’t see how Judge Wolfgram signing it has any relevance to any decisions he makes on the bench,” Meloy said. “I respect him for the reasons that are important — the job he has done as a judge. I’m proud to support him.”

    Voiland is the first challenger Wolfgram has faced in his 18 years on the bench.

    Wolfgram has spent nearly his entire legal career in Ozaukee County. After graduating from Marquette University Law School in Milwaukee, he served as an assistant prosecutor and district attorney in the county.

    After six years in private practice, Wolfgram was appointed to the bench, a position he was elected to in 1995, 2001 and 2007.

    In 2008, Wolfgram, who is the county’s presiding judge, was named Judge of the Year by the State Bar of Wisconsin.

    Voiland, also a graduate of Marquette University Law School, specializes in  financial services litigation with the Milwaukee-based law firm Reinhart Boerner Van Deuren.

    He has served as counsel to the State of Wisconsin in litigation regarding the 2011 congressional and legislative redistricting and to Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice David Prosser during the recount of votes cast in the 2011 Supreme Court election.Daily-Press

    Voiland served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Navy before becoming a lawyer.


 
Congressman Petri to hold town meetings PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 06 February 2013 16:33

The public will have the opportunity to share their thoughts with Congressman Tom Petri when he holds two town meetings in Ozaukee County on Sunday, Feb. 17, and Wednesday, Feb. 20.

    Petri represents the state’s Sixth Congressional District, which includes Ozaukee County.

    All town meetings will include an introduction from Petri and an opportunity for residents to talk about issues.

    A town meeting will be held from 1 to 2 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 17, in the community meeting room at the Cedarburg Police Department, W75 N444 Wauwatosa Rd.

    Another meeting will be held from 10 to 11 a.m. Wednesday, Feb. 20, in the community room at the Port Washington Police Department, 365 N. Wisconsin St.

    For a complete list of upcoming town meetings, visit www.petri.house.gov.

 
Phone scam claimed grandson was in Mexico PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 06 February 2013 16:29

A 70-year-old Port Washington resident called police Friday, Feb. 1, after she received a phone call from a man claiming to be her grandson.

The man on the phone told the woman he was in a Mexican jail and asked her to wire him money for bail.

The woman called a family member and discovered her grandson was not in Mexico and was OK.

No money was lost in the attempted phone scam.

Other incidents include:

• A 14-year-old boy at Thomas Jefferson Middle School was cited for disorderly conduct after he used profane language toward teacher Wednesday, Jan. 30.

• A 17-year-old girl at Port Washington High School was cited Wednesday, Jan. 30, for disorderly conduct and suspended from school after she refused to leave a classroom and used profane language towards a teacher and the vice principal.

• On Thursday, Jan. 31, a 17-year-old boy at Port Washington High School was cited for underage drinking after staff suspected that he had consumed alcohol. Police discovered the student had a blood alcohol level of .10 after administering a portable breath test.

• The Parks and Recreation Department reported damage at the warming stations in Lower Lake Park, 410 N. Lake St., after discovering a damaged faucet in the women’s bathroom Monday, Jan. 28. badge
• Mailboxes on the 1500 block of Pine Cone Trail were reported being vandalized Monday, Jan. 28. Police said one mailbox was knocked off its post and three others had damage from the use of a blunt object, possibly a baseball bat. Police were given a description of a vehicle, but have no suspects.


 
Proposed height of building to be discussed Feb. 5 PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by KRISTYN HALBIG ZIEHM   
Wednesday, 30 January 2013 20:04

    How tall a structure should developer Gertjan van den Broek be able to erect as he renovates the former M&I Bank and Harry’s Restaurant building?

    The public will get its say when the Common Council holds a public hearing on a special exception permit for van den Broek’s project at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 5.

    Van den Broek has proposed a sweeping renovation plan that calls for the construction of a new structure between the former bank and the restaurant buildings, as well as an addition on the east side, to create a multi-million-dollar retail and residential development.

    The renovated and new buildings would have an average height of 45-1/2 feet, while the tallest element is a 48-foot-tall tower.

    City codes allow a 35-foot tall building downtown without a special exception permit.

    Although controversy has greeted a number of building proposals in the past that exceeded the 35-foot limit, City Administrator Mark Grams said he hasn’t heard any objections to van den Broek’s proposal.

    In part, he said, that could be because neighboring buildings are similar in height to van den Broek’s proposal. The Biever building across the street and the Boerner Mercantile Building northeast of the site are 45 and 50 feet high, respectively, officials said.

    The special exception permit is the last city approval van den Broek needs for his project, Grams said.

    However, the city and van den Broek are continuing discussions about parking, Grams said. The city has agreed in concept to reserving 19 parking spaces in municipal lots for building tenants, but has not determined where those spaces will be.Daily-Press

    Also Tuesday, the Common Council will hold a public hearing on proposed changes to its liquor license law, tightening the procedures to issue and revoke the permits.

 
Mom accused of hitting kids with belt faces felonies PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by BILL SCHANEN IV   
Wednesday, 30 January 2013 20:03

Port woman charged after her children say she hurt them

    A 38-year-old Port Washington woman accused by her children of hitting them with a leather belt was charged Tuesday with felony child abuse.

    The woman, who is not being named by Ozaukee Press to protect the identities of her children, faces two counts of physical abuse of a child, a crime punishable by a maximum 1-1/2 years in prison and two years extended supervision.

    According to the criminal complaint filed in Ozaukee County Circuit Court, a 12-year-old boy told authorities that at about 6:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 28, his mother hit him with a leather belt on his forearm at his home.

    A police officer noted a six to eight-inch mark on the boy’s forearm, the complaint states.

    The boy and his sister, who was 13 at the time, said their mother stopped hitting the boy after the girl intervened, according to the complaint.     

    The girl, who turned 14 the day after the incident, said her mother grabbed her by the hair, dragged her out of the house and forced her into a car. The girl said her mother was saying “very bad words to her,” the complaint states.

    The girl told police that her mother drove to Upper Lake Park in Port Washington, where she hit her with a belt, according to the complaint.

    An office reported seeing an “area of slight discoloration” on the girl’s right wrist, the complaint states.

    According to police, the boy called his father shortly after the incident and told him his mother had hit him. The father called police. Daily-Press

    Judge Paul Malloy authorized the release of the woman from jail in lieu of a $1,000 signature bond. He ordered her not to have contact with her children.

 
Saukville woman accused of stealing from jewelry store PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by BILL SCHANEN IV   
Wednesday, 30 January 2013 19:56

    A 38-year-old Saukville woman already in trouble with the law for allegedly forging a check from her ex-fiance was charged Monday with stealing a $2,750 diamond ring from a jewelry store.

    Onyetta M. Kretlow was arrested after she tried to resell the ring, as well as another piece of jewelry, at a shop near the jewelry store shortly after she stole them, according to the criminal complaint filed in Ozaukee County Circuit Court.

    Kretlow was charged this week with one count of felony retail theft, a crime punishable by a maximum 1-1/2 years in prison and two years extended supervision.

    Last week, Kretlow was charged with one count of forgery, a felony punishable by a maximum three years in prison and three years extended supervision.

    According to the complaint in the theft case, an employee of Armbruster Jewelers in Cedarburg told police that on Tuesday, Jan. 15, Kretlow was looking at rings in the store and appeared to be trying to distract the person helping her. At one point, the employee said, Kretlow was seen behind the counter where diamond rings are displayed.

    Kretlow eventually made a purchase and left the store.

    Employees were not aware Kretlow had stolen jewelry until the owner of the nearby Pagoda Fine Jewelry store told them that Kretlow tried to sell her two types of rings sold by Armbruster Jewelers, the complaint states. That’s when employees discovered a $2,750 Hidalgo diamond ring and $195 silver promise ring were missing.

    When the jewelry store called Kretlow in an attempt to recover the jewelry, she said that store employees mistakenly put the rings in the box with the item she purchased, according to the complaint. Kretlow then returned the jewelry.

    Employees told authorities it’s highly unlikely that happened.

    When confronted by police, Kretlow told them a similar story. But after being told that surveillance video showed her behind the counter where the Hidalgo rings are kept, Kretlow admitted to trying to sell the rings but insisted she did not knowingly take them from the store, the complaint states.
Daily-Press
    In the forgery case, Kretlow’s ex-fiance told authorities that when the couple was engaged to be married, he wrote a $200 check to a caterer. After the wedding was cancelled, he said, Kretlow told him that she destroyed the check, according to the complaint.
    It was later discovered, however, that Kretlow had written her name over that of the caterer and cashed the check, the complaint states.



 
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