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Woman gets 16 months in jail for rash of crimes PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by Bill Schanen IV   
Wednesday, 15 March 2017 17:17

Saukville resident pleads guilty to charges that include child neglect, OWI

A 31-year-old Saukville woman who racked up 11 criminal charges, including child neglect and spitting on a police officer, during a 10-month period beginning in December 2015 was sentenced last week to 16 months in the Ozaukee County jail.

Lisa M. Dulong, a former Fredonia resident, pleaded guilty March 8 to third-offense operating while intoxicated with a child in the car, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct and four counts of bail jumping, as well as the child neglect and spitting on an officer charges. Three other charges were dismissed.

The charges were filed in four separate complaints between December 2015 and March 2017.

In addition to ordering her to serve time in jail, Ozaukee County Circuit Judge Paul Malloy sentenced Dulong to 1-1/2 years in prison and two years of extended supervision for her most serious crime — spitting on an officer — but stayed the punishment, which means that if she completes three years of probation she will not have to serve the time.

Dulong’s troubles with the law began on Dec. 19, 2015, when she was arrested for hitting and kicking the father of her son in the parking lot of a McDonald’s restaurant in Fredonia, where they had met to exchange custody of the boy, according to the criminal complaint.

Dulong was charged with disorderly conduct-domestic abuse and released in lieu of a $500 signature bond.

About a month later, on Jan. 15, 2016, Dulong was arrested again after a Grafton gas station employee called police to report that Dulong was passed out in a car parked at the station with a screaming child in the back seat, the complaint states.

The employee told police that she noticed Dulong’s car parked at a gas pump at about 10:40 p.m., and when she and a coworker approached the car and knocked on the window, Dulong sat up momentarily but then slumped over again.

An officer who arrived about 30 minutes later pounded on the window of the car but could not wake Dulong. He then unlocked the door and tried rousing Dulong, who woke up only momentarily before falling back asleep. 

The officer said Dulong’s 4-year-old son was awake in the back seat. The temperature at the time was about 29 degrees.

A preliminary blood alcohol test revealed no alcohol in Dulong’s system, but the officer found a bottle of the anti-anxiety medication alprazolam while searching her belongings. The prescription for 90 pills had been filled the day before, but only 24 pills were in the bottle, according to the complaint.

Dulong was initially charged with misdemeanor crimes and her bail was set at $5,000. She spent about a month-and-a-half in jail before her bail was reduced to $1,000, which she posted on March 3, 2016. An additional charge of third-offense operating a vehicle while intoxicated with a child in the car, a felony, was filed later.

Just more than two months later, a sheriff’s deputy responding to a report of a car in a ditch off Highway A in the Town of Fredonia found Dulong asleep in the vehicle at about 5:30 a.m.

When confronted by the deputy, who had to knock on the car window to wake Dulong up and said he could smell alcohol, Dulong admitted to drinking, which was prohibited by the conditions of her bail, the criminal complaint states.

Dulong denied she was the driver of the vehicle but refused to say who was.

Dulong, who according to a preliminary test had a blood alcohol level of 0.03, below the 0.08 threshold for intoxication, was charged with bail jumping. Her bail was set at $350.

With three cases pending against her, Dulong was arrested again on Oct. 13 after a man said he saw her hit a parked car near Quade Park in Saukville, then drive away, according to the criminal complaint.

The man called police and followed Dulong to the employee entrance of Charter Steel, where a police officer stopped her.

The officer noticed Dulong’s car had significant front-end damage and the air bags had deployed, although Dulong said it had happened about a week earlier.

The officer, who noted Dulong smelled of alcohol, said she resisted arrest and spit on him and inside his squad car. 

As he was taking Dulong to a nearby hospital, the officer said, she launched into an expletive laced tirade directed at him. At one point she said, “I’m going to get out and find you all. I know your last name. My friends know where you live and it’s all good.... You ever been raped...?” according to the complaint.

Officers found unidentified pills in Dulong’s purse and a bottle of vodka and Dr. Green’s Agent X Fake Pee in her car.

Dulong was charged on Oct. 14 with six crimes, including three counts of bail jumping. Her bail was set at $25,000 and increased to $5,000 in each of the three other pending cases. She has been in jail since then.Daily Press

 
Port candidates to tackle issues at forum PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 19:25

A visioning and candidate forum for aldermanic candidates in the City of Port Washington will be held from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, March 25.

The forum will be in the Lakeview Community Room in the former Wilson House at the corner of Main and Franklin streets in downtown Port.

The forum, organized by a group of Port residents, is intended as an opportunity for residents to discuss issues and share their visions of the city’s future with the candidates.

It’s also a chance for the candidates to meet residents.

There are two contested races in the  April 4 aldermanic election — in the 3rd District, where newcomers Michael Gasper and Don Cosentine will face off, and the 7th District, where incumbent Ald. Dan Becker and John Sigwart, a former city engineer, will compete.

Ald. Mike Ehrlich is running uncontested for the city’s 1st District seat.

In the 5th District, incumbent Ald. Kevin Rudser is not seeking re-election and newcomer Jonathan Pleitner, a member of the city’s Parks and Recreation Board, is the lone candidate on the ballot.Daily Press

 
Trump’s budget may endanger marine sanctuary PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by Kristyn Halbig Ziehm   
Wednesday, 08 March 2017 19:22

Port mayor says public support for NOAA preserve particularly important with president’s budget looming

Port Washington Mayor Tom Mlada on Tuesday asked area residents to ramp up their support for a proposed Lake Michigan shipwreck sanctuary, saying it’s more important now than ever because President Donald Trump’s proposed federal budget would significantly cut the budget for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. 

“We don’t know how that would potentially flow through to the Great Lakes fund or NOAA,” Mlada said, noting the budget proposal would slash funding for NOAA by 18%. “Clearly, I think there is some degree of concern with the potential cuts.

“Now is the time to let your voices be heard. This is something that’s simply too important. We have to push this down the field and into the end zone.”

Mlada said he is hoping for a good turnout at a public meeting on the sanctuary proposal  from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, March 16, in the Lakeview Community Room in the former Wilson House in downtown Port.

Public comments on the sanctuary’s draft environmental impact statement and management plans will be taken at the meeting, with input sought on everything from whether people support the overall concept of a sanctuary to the borders of the proposed sanctuary — there are two alternatives, the original three-county plan and one that includes the waters off Kewaunee County.

Mlada and other officials have long touted the impact a national sanctuary could have on the area, in terms of education, tourism and community vitality.

That would especially be true if the sanctuary is approved — something expected by late 2017 or early 2018 — and NOAA decides  where to locate its headquarters. 

The only other Great Lakes sanctuary, Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary and Great Lakes Maritime Heritage Center in Alpena, Mich., draws thousands of people annually to the community.

Mlada noted that an estimated 100,000 people visit Alpena annually, and the impact is significant.

The Wisconsin Department of Tourism estimates that a visitor spends $60 every day at his destination, Mlada said — funds that could help area businesses survive.

He also noted that Alpena had one hotel before the Thunder Bay sanctuary was created, and now it has three.

The proposed three-county Lake Michigan sanctuary — NOAA’s preferred option — includes 37 known wrecks, and officials believe there could be as many as 80 others waiting to be discovered. Fifteen of these vessels are preserved virtually intact, officials said, adding 18 of the known wrecks are listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Ten of the known shipwrecks are in the waters off Ozaukee County, with as many as 11 undiscovered wrecks believed to be off the county’s shore.

Public comments on the proposed Lake Michigan sanctuary are being accepted through March 31.

“This is our opportunity to weigh in,” Mlada said. “We need to do all we can locally to make sure our voices are heard. I don’t think we’re sounding alarm bells, but there is a sense of urgency.”

Ald. Dan Becker concurred, saying, “This is vitally important. There’s an environmental benefit. There’s a recreational benefit with the diving that would be done. There’s obviously a tourism benefit.”

The draft plans for the Lake Michigan sanctuary may be found at http://sanctuaries.noaa.gov/wisconsin/wisconsin-proposed-deis-dmp.pdf.

Comments should be sent to Russ Green, NOAA’s regional coordinator for the Lake Michigan sanctuary,  at the University of Wisconsin-Sheboygan, 1 University Dr., Sheboygan 53081.

They may also be emailed via the website www.regulations.gov and referencing the docket number NOAA-NOS-2016-0150.Daily Press

 
Shared-ride taxi service participation tops record PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by Mitch Maersch   
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 19:08

With service attracting more than 113,000 patrons, county plans to add stops

Participation in Ozaukee County’s shared-ride taxi service reached a record high in 2016, and three more stops in Milwaukee County are being added.

Ridership reached 113,569 last year, a 4% increase from 2015 and a 52% leap from 2010, which had nearly 75,000 riders.

Three-fourths of riders using the service are elderly or disabled, County Public Works Director Jon Edgren told the Public Works Committee last month.

Billed service hours in 2016 increased by 5%, but total costs only went up 2.7% and net costs just .73%, according to a report to the committee.

The service got its highest fare box recovery ever, and buying fuel in bulk set the price per gallon at $1.75, Transit Supt. Jason Wittek said.

The county pays the state fuel tax but not sales tax, Edgren said.

Fuel efficiency reached a record in 2016, with the service getting 14.05 miles per gallon, up from 12.9 in 2015. Fuel cost was down by nearly $40,000.

Some of the savings is due to newer, more fuel-efficient vehicles. Since 2015, the county replaced six Crown Victorias that got 19 miles per gallon with six hybrid vehicles that get 52 mpg.

Nearly 15,000 gallons of fuel totaling $25,000 was saved in 2016 due to fleet upgrades the past three years, according to a report to the committee from Wittek.

The service this year is replacing four of its vehicles and adding two hybrid cars to bring the fleet to 28 vehicles.

Three wheelchair-accessible mini-buses are being replaced, along with one rear-load wheelchair-accessible mini-van, which replaces a wheelchair-accessible mini-bus.

The old mini-bus gets nine miles per gallon while the new mini-van gets 25. Total cost for the vehicles is $240,000. Ozaukee County Transit Service has $275,000 in this year’s budget for vehicle replacements, the report said.

Ridership is continuing to climb. Wittek said that January had 10,218 riders, the biggest month in history of the taxi service. Ridership in January 2016 was 9,448 and the high for the year was 9,968 in March.

Numbers were aided by three additional stops in Milwaukee County this year.

The committee approved the boundary changes after a yearlong study with input from businesses, nonprofit agencies, education organizations and other governmental agencies.

In addition, the committee expanded the service by one hour from 9 p.m. to 10 p.m. on weekdays to accommodate second and third-shift workers.

The shared-ride taxi service could be merged with Washington County’s service, County Administrator Tom Meaux said.

The counties last year merged their public health departments.

The county’s express bus service had 80,601 riders in 2016, up 5% from 2015, but its third-lowest total since 1998.

Billed service hours and total costs were both down 1%, while net costs fell by 2%.

Wittek said the goal is to keep making the bus more attractive for casual riders. From Cedarburg, the bus can get to downtown Milwaukee in 22 minutes.

“That’s a pretty good deal,” Wittek said.

Summerfest ridership, with stops in Saukville and Grafton, returned to a normal level after bus drivers went on strike from July 1 to 3 in 2015. Ridership was 25,872 in 2016, up from 15,558 in 2015.

In 2014, the county started using Milwaukee County Transit Service buses exclusively to save on capital replacement costs.

For taxi and bus rates and more information, go to www.ozaukeetransit.com.Daily Press

 
Supreme Court overturns DNA decision in 1982 murder case PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by Kristyn Halbig Ziehm   
Wednesday, 01 March 2017 19:05

Judges rule Denny is not entitled to have evidence from Grafton crime tested

The Supreme Court of Wisconsin has ruled that Jeffrey C. Denny, one of two brothers sentenced to life in prison for a gruesome 1982 murder in Grafton, is not entitled to have evidence in his case tested for DNA.

In issuing its ruling Tuesday, the court overruled the Court of Appeals, which had said Denny was entitled to have evidence in his case tested for DNA more than 34 years after the crime. Such tests did not exist when Grafton resident Christopher Mohr was bludgeoned and stabbed to death at his home on Jan. 26, 1982.

The decision also effectively reiterates one made by Ozaukee County Circuit Judge Joseph Voiland in January 2015 stating that Denny was not entitled to DNA testing of a shattered marijuana bong, a bloody towel, a pair of gloves and hair found clutched in Mohr’s hand.

Denny’s case is being handled by the Wisconsin Innocence Project, which argued that the absence of his DNA on the objects could suggest he is innocent and the presence of other’s DNA could indicate someone else killed Mohr. The state’s case is being argued by the Office of the Solicitor General.

One of the main issues before the court was whether the result of DNA test would be relevant in Denny’s case.

Ozaukee County District Attorney Adam Gerol said Wednesday that the court’s decision recognizes “this is simply one of the cases where the evidence of guilt is so extreme that the defendant doesn’t get it (the testing).”

However, Gerol said, there are still questions left unanswered in the decision about when a defendant is entitled to post-conviction DNA testing that may mean it will be appealed. “There are some interesting things I think might make it amenable to federal review,” he said. “I don’t know that the U.S. Supreme Court has really weighed in on post-conviction DNA testing.”

Denny was 17 and his brother Kent was 19 when they were convicted of first-degree murder after a nine-day trial.

Jeffrey Denny is incarcerated at the Oakhill Correctional Institution. Kent Denny has died, according to the Wisconsin Department of Corrections Division of Community Corrections.

The two were convicted in the death of Mohr, with the state arguing the murder grew out of a drug-related dispute between  Mohr and the Dennys.Daily Press

 
School District tries to spark interest in land it wants to sell PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by Bill Schanen IV   
Wednesday, 22 February 2017 20:02

Port parcel seen as ideal for subdivision worth $800,000 by one estimate

Attempting to spark efforts to sell 54.5 acres of farmland the Port Washington-Saukville School District has owned for more than 47 years, the School Board last week decided to release a marketing report that describes the property as an attractive site for residential development.

The report, prepared by Moegenburg Research Inc. of Milwaukee, concludes that, based on an average size of 14,000 square feet, 127 lots could be developed on the property, which is north of Grand Avenue and east of Highway LL on Port Washington’s west side. 

That suggests the property, once seen as a future site for a school, could be a windfall for the district, although the excerpts of the Moegenburg report released by the district do not include appraisal information.

The district has not released the appraisal to protect its bargaining interests, Supt. Michael Weber said, and is in the process of having the land reappraised in light of an increase in new home construction in Port Washington. 

Tom Didier, owner/broker of Re/Max United Port Washington, who is not involved in efforts to sell the property, said in an interview this week that with an increasing demand for residential sites in the Port Washington area, it’s a seller’s market.

“All the market indications are good, and inventory is very low,” he said. “All the data we’ve seen suggests this year will mimic last year, which was pretty busy.”

High demand for residential sites is driving up prices, although not to where they were in the early 2000s when land was selling for $20,000 or more an acre, Didier said.

“Then the market tanked,” he said.

But in the current market, land like that owned by the School District, which is abutted by utilities and city streets, could sell for $15,000 an acre, Didier said. That would make the property worth more than $800,000.

“I don’t think we’re back in the $20,000-an-acre range, but maybe $15,000,” he said.

Thus far, the School Board has been committed to the for-sale-by-owner approach. Although it solicited proposals from brokers, it shelved those in September when it received an unsolicited offer for the property. The board countered that offer, which officials described as attractive, but the counteroffer has lapsed.

The board received a second offer earlier this year, but after meeting in closed session to consider it, took no action.

“We’ve received a couple more inquiries,” Director of Business Services Jim Froemming told the board last week.

Although farmland now, the property is seen as a desirable residential site because of its location and proximity to other subdivisions — Spinnaker West to the south, The Woods at White Pine to the west and Lake Ridge to the east. It’s bordered by farmland to the north.

Referring to comments from area real estate brokers, the Moegenburg report states, “They noted that the (property) has a great location within Port Washington and all utilities and services are to the site boundaries. The only downfall is the fact that there are a number of other subdivisions in the area that are trying to fill up, which provides greater competition.”

In May, a year after the approval of a $49.4 million referendum that reflects the board’s commitment to renovating and expanding its current schools rather than building new ones, officials decided it was time to sell the land the district has long owned.

The district purchased the property, which is comprised of two parcels, in January 1969 from Elmer and Myrtle Bley for $149,944.

Since then it has been seen as a site for a future school, but as the city developed around it and the needs of schools changed, it became a less desirable school site. And with the approval of a referendum that provides $46.5 million to modernize the high school and $3.8 million to expand Dunwiddie Elementary School, officials said it was time put the property on the market.

Proceeds from the sale of the land are to be used to finance capital improvements, and a leading contender is Port Washington High School’s outdoor athletic facilities, officials have said. While the referendum is financing building improvements, it does not include money for outdoor athletic facilities. 

Officials envision a fairly sweeping project that would include the replacement of the grass football field with artificial turf, new lighting and sound systems and a press box. The project could be expanded to include artificial turf and other improvements to the baseball diamonds and track and field facilities. Daily Press

 
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