8/30/16 - Bond was set at $1,000 yesterday for a Hartford woman accused of fleeing the scene of an accident. Alyssa Busateri is facing one felony count of Hit and Run Involving Injury. In July, the 18-year-old allegedly drove off at speeds around 100 miles per hour after striking another vehicle from behind in the Town of Rubicon. The driver of the other vehicle suffered multiple injuries, including a herniated disc. If she is convicted, Busateri faces up to nine months behind bars. Her preliminary hearing is October 20.
8/30/16 - Bond was set at $1,000 yesterday for a Horicon woman accused of lying to a police officer. Faith Murphy is facing counts of felony Identity Theft and misdemeanor Obstructing an Agency, both as a repeat offender. An officer saw the 27-year-old walking in the Town of Hubbard on Wednesday night. When he stopped his squad car and began to turn around to check on her well-being, Murphy allegedly dashed into a nearby wooded area. She reportedly provided officers with a false name, stating she was the mother of her ex-boyfriend’s child. Officers believed Murphy lied about her identity since she had been drinking, which was a violation of her probation. If she is convicted on both counts, Murphy faces up to ten years in prison. Her preliminary hearing is October 20.
8/30/16 - Voters in the Hustisford School District will see a $5.6-million dollar referendum question on the November 8 ballot. The funds would largely cover facility upgrades to John Hustis Elementary School. Although she says students are not currently at risk, Superintendent Heather Cramer notes the district wants to bolster security at the building’s entrance. While visitors currently need to use a buzzer system to enter the elementary school, Cramer says they can freely roam the building once access is granted. The district hopes to move the school office to the front of the building so visitors need to sign in at the office prior to accessing the rest of the school. Cramer says changing the office location will prompt some other renovations. The planned elementary office would intrude on the school cafeteria. According to Cramer, the current cafeteria is not large enough to comfortably fit all students anyways. If the referendum is successful, the cafeteria would move into the gymnasium and a new gym would be constructed as an add-on. Cramer says the district would also use the funds to add three special education classrooms. The district last went to referendum in 2014 for operational needs, and it was successful. School officials say the last facility referendum was over 20 years ago.
8/30/16 - The state Department of Justice has released the name of the officer involved in a ‘suicide-by-cop’ incident earlier this month in Beaver Dam. Dodge County Sheriff’s Deputy Joseph Nicholas used lethal force on August 5th at the Spring Lake Apartments. A ‘suicide-by-cop’ incident is described as a scenario where a suspect creates a deadly force situation where law enforcement is forced to act to stop a potentially deadly threat to themselves and the community at large. At a press conference following the incident, Beaver Dam Police Chief John Kreuziger explained that 59-year-old James Quealy of Beaver Dam was threatening suicide to friends and had access to a firearm. Beaver Dam Police responded, set up a perimeter, and started negotiating with the subject. Quealy reportedly told officers he wished to end his life through suicide-by-cop and began waiving a firearm on his balcony. After roughly one hour of negotiations, Beaver Dam Police requested assistance from the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office. Sheriff Dale Schmidt says his deputies attempted to end the negotiations peacefully, but the suspect turned the gun and fired a shot at his deputies. Nicholas returned fire, killing Quealy. Nicholas was uninjured in the exchange and remains on administrative leave until the investigation has concluded. The state Department of Criminal Investigations is continuing to collect evidence before turning over its findings to the Dodge County District Attorney. Nicholas has been with the department since 2007 and had never been in an officer-involved shooting before. Sheriff Schmidt stated after the incident that his deputy used appropriate force.
8/29/16 - Cash bond was set at $100,000 today for the Beaver Dam man accused of breaking into multiple churches last week. Kodey Meredith is facing four felony Burglary counts, all as a party to a crime. The 26-year-old allegedly broke into both Grace Presbyterian Church and First Evangelical Lutheran Church during the overnight hours of August 21-22. Meredith reportedly stole over $16-thousand dollars’ worth of Scrip cards, which churches and organizations can buy at reduced rates and sell to supporters who pay the full value for use at restaurants, gas stations, and other participating businesses. He is also accused of breaking into First Evangelical during the overnight hours of August 7-8 to steal cash, keys, and electronics. Meredith also allegedly broke into the home of Beaver Dam Police Department Chaplain Mark Jensen on the morning of August 4 and stole his chaplain badge, along with keys to Wayland Academy, checkbooks, and electronics. Officers tracked used scrip cards back to Meredith, and a search warrant executed at his house reportedly turned up the stolen items. Meredith denied stealing the cards and claimed he was unsure how the items ended up in his home. Though Meredith did tell officers he has a heroin problem. A friend allegedly told police that Meredith confessed the burglaries to him. If Meredith is convicted on all counts, he faces over 52 years in prison. A preliminary hearing is set for September 8. While there may be other suspects in the case, none have been identified at this time.
8/29/16 - Hustisford residents will likely pay more this year for the school portion of their tax bill than they did last year. The district’s preliminary budget shows a projected mill rate of $10.91, up from last year’s $10.03. That means the owner of a $100,000 home would pay $109.10 in school taxes. The $5.5-million dollar budget would bring a $3.3-million dollar tax levy, $300-thousand dollars more than the 2015-16 levy. School officials say district property values will not be available until October. Last year’s $304-million dollar property valuation was used in the preliminary document. Finance Director Michael Gerlach says the projected levy and mill rate increases are largely due to a decrease in state aid. Hustisford is also entering the third of four years in a $240,000 technology upgrade plan. Superintendent Heather Cramer says the district has seen positive results in the first two years as parents have noted their kids are more engaged in learning through the new, interactive lessons that incorporate laptops, IPads, and smart boards. Gerlach says the preliminary budget comes with a $62-thousand dollar deficit. He says the district was in a similar spot going into the past two school years but both times eliminated the deficit by year’s end. This year’s budget hearing is scheduled for October 10 with final adoption the following week.