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2 Waukesha police officials who resigned smoked pot, department says

March 28, 2011 6:34 p.m. | Waukesha - A Waukesha police lieutenant and a police officer who were put on administrative leave last year have resigned in the wake of charges ranging from illegal behavior to insubordination, according to internal investigation reports released Monday by the department.

Before they resigned Police Chief Russell Jack had moved to fire both.

Lt. Craig Rivers, who was first hired in 1988 and was later promoted to lieutenant, was first investigated after a heated argument last August between him an another officer. According to the reports, the fight stemmed from him having an extramarital affair with the wife of another officer while married to the sister of another officer, but his conduct had begun to interfere with duties in 2006 when he did not get promoted to captain. Investigation reports found that he was also smoking marijuana during the period.

Among other things, he was accused of failing to follow orders to properly staff the dispatch center and failing to properly monitor traffic grants that ended up costing the department thousands of dollars in overtime that wasn't covered by the grant. He was also accused of failing to properly administer a crossing guard contract, resulting in higher pay for guards than was negotiated in the contract.

Officer Scott Heitman was placed on leave last December after the investigation of Rivers revealed that Heitman had smoked marijuana with Rivers about six times between 2006 and 2008 on vacations and other personal time.

Former Waukesha Alderman Roger Patton remembered for his service

4:30 p.m. | As an alderman, Roger Patton didn't like to miss a meeting.

In fact, Patton, who served as the city of Waukesha's District 11 alderman since 2010, often attended many meetings that weren't required of him even as his health began to decline over the last year.

Patton died Sunday, Oct. 11, after spending the past month at West Allis Memorial Hospital battling many health issues. He was 79.

"I believe the city is in a better state because of his commitment," Waukesha Common Council President Andy Reiland said at last week's council meeting.

In and out of the council chambers, he made his presence felt, Reiland said.

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Waukesha Mayor Shawn Reilly urges Congress to reauthorize Ex-Im Bank

12:15 p.m. | Mayor Shawn Reilly is fulfilling his promise, but whether it has the desired effect is to be determined.

GE has already announced its decision is final. The company still plans to move the jobs after it builds a $265 million factory in Canada, which is among 60 other countries that have export credit agencies that support domestic manufacturing for export. As a result of the move, the local facility will close within 20 months.

But the mayor isn't backing down.

When Reilly first heard General Electric was eliminating 350 jobs from Waukesha's Power and Water facility at 1101 W. St. Paul Ave., he vowed he would try to work with the company, as well as state and federal partners, in an attempt to retain the jobs here.

Congressional role

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Woman accused of stealing $21,000, climbing through ceiling to steal drugs pleads guilty

Oct. 12, 2015 8:23 p.m. | City of Waukesha — Dousman resident Stephanie Butler is still waiting for one final bang of the judge's gavel before the books can close on some of her myriad legal troubles.

Butler, 30, pleaded guilty Friday, Oct. 9 in Waukesha County Circuit Court to two counts of misappropriating identification information to obtain money, and to burglary of a room within a building and possession of narcotic drugs — all felonies. She is scheduled to be sentenced for her crimes Nov. 18 by Judge Ralph Ramirez, court records say.

All the charges stem from two separate criminal cases, one of which involved Butler skimming more than $21,000 from Waukesha State Bank customers while she worked there as a teller; and the other in which Butler apparently crawled through the ceiling of an Oconomowoc Kmart to break into the store's pharmacy and steal prescription drugs.

Charges from both cases were filed almost exactly two months apart (the bank theft charges were filed first), but the plea hearings were adjudicated jointly and the date of the sentencing hearing is the same for both cases, according to online court records. All the remaining charges in both cases — there were more than two dozen of them — were dismissed but read into the court record.

Butler could be facing decades in prison and more than $50,000 in fines. And she's still facing charges in one Milwaukee County case.

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Former Waukesha Alderman Roger Patton dies

Oct. 12, 2015 7:34 a.m. |  Former Waukesha Alderman Roger Patton died last night in his sleep, according to a post on his Facebook page. His health had been declining in the last couple months. Watch for further updates as they become available. 

Waukesha postal carrier suspected of stealing mail

Oct. 09, 2015 9:24 p.m. | A postal carrier in Waukesha faces charges after being accused of stealing mail, WISN-TV in Milwaukee reported Friday.

The 58-year-old fill-in carrier allegedly took mail to his home looking for cash and gift cards, according to a post on the station's website.

An investigator told the station a large quantity of mail was recovered from the man's vehicle and residence.

Mama D's Coffee open in former Spoon site

Oct. 09, 2015 1:18 p.m. | Mama D's Coffee is now open for business in Waukesha.

Diana Markus, also known as Mama D, held a grand opening ceremony Saturday, Oct. 10, at the former Spoon site, 928 N. Hartwell Ave.

Markus has operated Mama D's Coffee in Wales for three years; when property owner Leslie Bley came to her about the Waukesha vacancy, she decided to expand her operation.

Saturday's festivities included complimentary coffee offered by Valentine Coffee, free samples from Sally's Sweet Shoppe and a musical performance from Stan Markus (also known as Papa D).

Diana Markus said the Waukesha location offers the same menu as its Wales location.

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Updated week eight rankings of area prep football teams and players

Food drive grows bigger in Waukesha's District 12

Oct. 09, 2015 10:00 a.m. | For the third straight year, neighborhoods within the city's 12th district are holding a food drive to benefit the Food Pantry of Waukesha County.

But this year, the River Hills Estates Food Drive is expanding to include the entire southwest side district on Saturday morning.

Alderman Aaron Perry, who represents constituents in this district and also participates in the drive, said the last two years volunteers have gone door-to-door in the neighborhood picking up donations.

Given the success of the first two years, the drive will include the district's other four neighborhoods (River's Crossing, Fox Lake Village, River Place and Rose Glen) located behind Waukesha West High School.

Perry said people who want to participate should leave a food pantry donation outside their homes by 9 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 10, for pick up.

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Waukesha Verizon Wireless store robbed at gunpoint

Oct. 08, 2015 9:08 p.m. | The Verizon Wireless store at 1921 Silvernail Road in Waukesha was robbed Thursday by two men, one who was armed with a handgun, according to police.

The robbery was reported shortly after 6 p.m., according to a news release from the Waukesha Police Department.

The robbers obtained an undisclosed amount of cash before fleeing on foot toward Meadow Lane, according to the release.

Anyone with information about the robbery is asked to call Waukesha police at (262) 524-3926.

Waukesha Police Report: Oct. 8, 2015 issue

Oct. 08, 2015 2:30 p.m. | 1 A maroon Saturn was scratched at 2146 Kilps Drive prior to 1:02 p.m. Sept. 24.

2 A phone was stolen from a stroller near the Waukesha Public Library, 321 Wisconsin Ave., at 6:06 p.m. Sept. 24. A suspect was seen fleeing south toward the library parking lot.

3 A customer choked an employee at Buffalo Wild Wings, 1180 W. Sunset Drive, Suite 106, at 9:32 p.m. Sept. 24. He fled the scene.

4 A man was taken into custody after police responded to a domestic disturbance at 714 Oakland Ave. at 1:09 a.m. Sept. 25. The man, who was intoxicated, and his wife were in an argument and he wasn't letting her in the house. He also allegedly threatened to kill her.

5 A male delivery driver urinated in public at 331 Riverfront Plaza at 10:11 a.m. Sept. 25. No complaint was filed but the caller was concerned about the health code violation. The caller then reported the incident to the city's health department. The suspect's employer was notified.

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Housing development hopes to stay at home in town of Waukesha

Oct. 08, 2015 10:30 a.m. | A long-planned housing project that includes condominiums and single-family lots could finally make its way into the town of Waukesha.

A developer is looking to redevelop the Fred Lathers property at River Road along Highway I, south of Fox Vale Court, as a residential subdivision, and, more pointedly, remain as a town, not city, property.

The developer is proposing eight single-family condominium units west of River Road, and an additional 40 single-family lots east of River Road.

A majority of the Fred Lathers property is within the project boundary Vernon Wildlife Area, southwest of Waukesha West High School.

Based on the original parcel size of 91 acres and environmental corridor estimate of 28 acres, a maximum of 48 residential units was established based on Waukesha County's more restrictive density provisions, according to a town report.

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Erik Helgestad appointed to the Waukesha Common Council

Oct. 07, 2015 12:28 p.m. | The timeline for Erik Helgestad sped up by about six months.

The Waukesha resident first intended to run for the District 11 aldermanic seat in spring 2016.

But when he heard the position was open after Alderman Roger Patton announced his resignation due to health reasons last month, Helgestad decided now was the time to get into public service. Patton died Sunday, Oct. 11.

Helgestad, who was unanimously appointed to the Waukesha Common Council on Tuesday, Oct. 6, wants to be a voice for his constituents.

"I intend to hit the ground running as fast as I can," Helgestad said while being interviewed by the council. "I'll start engaging the residents."

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Waukesha business park gets a healthy addition with Dental Associates

Oct. 07, 2015 10:15 a.m. | An area probably best known for Goodwill, Lasertag Adventure and Walmart Neighborhood Market just off Highway 164 and East Main Street is now growing with another niche: the health industry.

A year after an urgent care facility and dentist office opened at the corner of Highway 164 and Coral Drive, joining a chiropractic office and a fitness center for women in the business park, the latest addition to the neighborhood will follow suit.

Dental Associates is entering the Waukesha market and is building a 21,571-square-foot dental facility on a three-acre slot just north of AFC/Doctors Express and Proven Dental. The office is expected to open in spring 2016.

Dental Associates, Wisconsin's largest family-owned dental group practice headquartered in downtown Milwaukee, recently started construction on its facility at 1211 Dolphin Court in Waukesha.

The facility will be situated between the Goodwill store and Harmony Pet Clinic, Central Bark Doggy Day Care at Highway 164 and East Main Street on the north end of Dolphin Court.

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Vietnamese restaurant Pho King opens, pizza eatery Bobanna's closes in Waukesha

Oct. 06, 2015 10:55 a.m. | A new restaurant is now open on Waukesha's southside, while an Italian pizza restaurant on Summit Avenue has closed.

Pho King, a Vietnamese restaurant, is open for business at 316 W. Sunset Drive. The restaurant occupies the building previously used by The Spot on Sunset, which moved into the former Broadway Cafe at 500 E. Broadway St. in June.

Pho King, which is family-owned and operated, also has a restaurant at 11112 W. National Ave., West Allis.

The restaurant serves pho, a Vietnamese dish that is made by creating homemade beef broth, steeped with warm and fragrant spices, according to the restaurant's website. The broth is then left to simmer for hours, giving it lots of flavor.

Pho is served with cuts of tenderloin and brisket, Vietnamese meatballs and tendons. Other variations of pho have been created such as chicken pho, seafood pho and pork pho.

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West Allis man charged with video taping women's restroom at UW-Waukesha

Oct. 06, 2015 8:39 a.m. | According to a criminal complaint, a West Allis man said he liked to watch and listen to females using the bathroom, and would spend weeks inside the opposite sex's restroom at the University of Wisconsin-Waukesha doing just that.

But late last spring, Jacob E. Laurishke, 22, was busted after he began recording a woman inside a stall in a campus bathroom, the complaint said.

Now, four months after being caught, Laurishke was charged on Sept. 21 with invasion of privacy in a public place with a person present. If convicted, Laurishke faces up to nine months in prison and $10,000 in fines.

He posted a $500 cash bond on May 6 and will make his first court appearance on Oct. 19 at the Waukesha County Courthouse.

According to the complaint, a woman, then 22, was in a public bathroom May 5 on campus and saw a black backpack on the floor in a stall. She said once she was in her stall she heard someone exit a stall and enter the stall next to her, the complaint read.

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