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Waukesha Alderman Aaron Perry seeking 97th Assembly District seat

March 28, 2014 11:03 a.m. | In the days after the embattled Rep. Bill Kramer announced he won't seek re-election for his state assembly seat, there haven't been a shortage of interested candidates.

Three local officials have said that they are considering the position, while one (Alderman Aaron Perry) has announced his candidacy for the 97th Assembly District seat.

Perry, who has lived in Waukesha since 2009, has been an alderman in the City of Waukesha for the last year. He represents the city's 12th district on the city's southwest side.

The other three who have expressed interest in the position includes Alderwoman Kathleen Cummings, Alderman Adam Jankowski and Town of Waukesha Supervisor Joe Banske.

If just one of them also declares their candidacy, there would be a Republican primary on Aug. 12.

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Waukesha police report: June 2, 2016 issue

4:40 p.m. | 1A city employee found a marijuana pipe on the side of the road around 9:13 a.m. May 20 near West Moreland Boulevard and Airport Road. Police recovered the pipe and destroyed it.

2A woman told police a man hit her near West Laflin and South Grand avenues around 1:09 p.m. May 20. The woman declined medical treatment and said the man took her purse, wallet and phone. A police report did not indicate whether officers found the suspect.

3An anonymous caller reported a man was possibly trying to break into a car around 1:41 p.m. May 20 in the municipal parking lot at 720 Clinton Street. The caller told police the man was using a coat hanger or a piece of wire to try to get into the car and wasn't sure if the vehicle belonged to the man.

4A caller told police they thought they saw kids using drugs while they were sitting up in some trees around 4:33 p.m. May 20 at Horeb Spring Park, 400 Spring St.

5An apparently intoxicated woman barged into a home in the 400 block of Barney Street around 7:06 p.m. May 20 looking for someone named "Danny Santos." According to a police report, the homeowners did not know the person the woman was talking about and shortly after walking into the home the woman and a man she was with — who had urinated outside — left. Police later discovered the Santos family had moved away from the area years ago.

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Farmer's Daughter Collection in Waukesha makes cultural connection

3:16 p.m. | Walking into The Farmer's Daughter Collection, 380 W. Main St., is a little like crossing a cultural threshold.

That's because everything that's for sale inside the new art store — which had its grand opening in April and is occupying the space previously filled by the River's End Gallery — isn't from around here.

The store offers handmade jewelry, pottery and artifacts from American Indian artists based in Arizona and New Mexico.

In fact, the only thing in the shop that might be a Wisconsin product is the store's owner, Lynn Pfeil, who said her mother began collecting many of the various pieces now on display in the store many years ago.

"They're all quality items," said Pfeil, a Vernon resident. "You can't find them anywhere."

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Waukesha School District lauds change in food service provider

11:25 a.m. | The Waukesha School District was craving a change for its food service provider, which, as it turned out, spelled doom for a business already beset by difficulties tied an an employee theft.

After more than 20 years with Sodexo, the district will begin using Aramark starting in June. For Sodexo, it was apparently the last straw. The business announced in May that it will close locally.

Every five years districts are required by the Wisconsin Department of instruction to issue a request for proposals from food management services. The district has been using Sodexo since the 1995-1996 school year, but was looking to increase the quality of food and service it provided to students.

In the end, the board voted unanimously to make the switch to Aramark.

Problems with Sodexo

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Allô! Chocolat owners seek sweet deal for downtown Waukesha business

9:42 a.m. | Another downtown business is up for sale.

Allo! Chocolat co-owners Roger and Carrie Igielski announced in a May 23 letter to their customers that they intend to sell their chocolate shop at 234 W. Main St. to a buyer that will "maintain the high quality products that we offer, provide our customers with our usual high level of service and nurture our 20 staff members as they continue to enhance the business."

"After nearly 10 years of chocolate bliss, we have made the difficult decision that the timing is right for us personally, and for Allô! Chocolat, to put the business up for sale," the letter began.

Roger Igielski said in a May 25 interview that he and his wife are looking to sell the business as soon as possible.

Thriving store

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Family of Milwaukee man killed by Walworth County deputy seeks answers

May 26, 2016 9:24 p.m. | The family of a Milwaukee man shot to death by a Walworth County sheriff's deputy three months ago say they have yet to be provided with information about what led to the shooting.

"All they know is what was reported in the press release by the media," Nate Hamilton of the Coalition for Justice said at a news conference Thursday evening at the grave of Christopher J. Davis in Graceland Cemetery.

Davis, 21, was shot Feb. 24 while sitting in a car in the parking lot of Roma's Ristorante and Lounge in the village of East Troy during what the Walworth County Sheriff's Office called a drug investigation with village police.

According to a news release from the Sheriff's Office, Deputy Juan Ortiz, 30, was assisting village police in the investigation and "discharged his department-issued firearm," striking Davis, after "the driver failed to follow commands" of officers.

The driver took off, prompting a chase that reached speeds of more than 100mph before ending when the vehicle crashed in the area of Durham Place and Hidden Creek Court in Muskego.

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Retzer Nature Center locked down May 25 due to attempted suicide

May 26, 2016 1:49 p.m. | A 21-year-old woman was flown to the hospital by Flight for Life after an attempted suicide Wednesday, May 25, at Retzer Nature Center.

According to a police report, the woman left a note for her parents in the morning that said she wanted to end her life then apparently drove to the nature center, S14 W28167 Madison St. Her parents told police the woman is pregnant.

Police found her there around 1 p.m. Wednesday carrying a pistol. Authorities locked down the park while deputies from the Waukesha County Sheriff's Department attempted to negotiate with the victim.

The negotiations failed, and the woman shot herself, the report said. However, scanner traffic indicated the woman was still alive when the Flight for Life helicopter landed.

She was rushed to Froedtert Hospital in Wauwatosa for treatment.

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Reconstruction of Tenny Avenue in Waukesha prompts short-term closure of nearby intersection

May 25, 2016 10:55 a.m. | More street closures are coming soon and will likely continue to aggravate local drivers who might already feel inundated by the sight of orange construction barrels.

However, the latest closure announced by the city, at College, Racine and Oakland avenues, just south of Buchner Pool, will be short-term.

According to City Project Engineer Katie Jelacic, the intersection of College, Racine and Oakland avenues will be closed from May 31, 2016 to June 3, 2016.

Planning staff said Wednesday, May 25 that intersection will be closed to facilitate the reconstruction of nearby Tenny Avenue, between Newhall and College avenues, which will require the installation of a new sewer.

Several other road projects are also underway along a number of main roads in Waukesha, including Highway 18/Moreland Boulevard, Main Street and Sunset Drive.

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Ex-Waukesha man accused of reckless homicide in heroin overdose death

May 24, 2016 2:25 p.m. | An ex-Waukesha man who called police to report his colleague had fatally overdosed on heroin was the one who provided her with the drug and is facing decades in prison for doing so, according to a criminal complaint.

Derek Engberg, who now resides in Milwaukee, also reportedly tried to revive the woman — 49-year-old Julie Bernal — before emergency personnel responded to his apartment, but couldn't. Bernal was later pronounced dead at Waukesha Memorial Hospital of an opiate intoxication.

Engberg, 25, was charged May 20 in Waukesha County Circuit Court with first-degree reckless homicide. He made his initial court appearance the same day and is being held at the county jail on a $5,000 cash bond.

According to the complaint, Engberg and Bernal drove together to Milwaukee to buy heroin on Dec. 30, 2015. Engberg knew a dealer there and bought heroin from him several times before, the complaint said.

He and Bernal allegedly injected themselves with the drug in a McDonald's bathroom before returning to Engberg's Waukesha apartment on Bluemound Road, where they snorted more heroin, according to the complaint.

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Initial Reaction: Talking with star Waukesha soccer players Dani Rhodes, Emily Cervantes

May 24, 2016 12:05 p.m. | JP sits down with top girls soccer players Dani Rhodes of Waukesha West and Emily Cervantes of Catholic Memorial. JP also begrudgingly talks about the decision facing Wisconsin forward Nigel Hayes, and the guys talk about Cubs-hate in the Milwaukee market and look at a number of WIAA spring sports storylines. Each week, Lake Country/Now sports director JR Radcliffe and Time Warner Cable Sports Channel's JP Cadorin chat about the Wisconsin sports scene, with an emphasis on Milwaukee-area preps. Find the podcast on Stitcher and iTunes.

Blair Innovation Flair creates challenges for all to share

May 23, 2016 5:27 p.m. | The Blair Flair explored new territory, turning the annual event into an extension of an educational theme at the Waukesha elementary school this year.

Dubbed the Blair Innovation Flair, the May 19 event put the emphasis on "innovation," with students dancing, playing, creating and designing their way through a public exhibition of education.

Principal Aida Cruz-Farin said that the school based the day's events on the interest and focus of the students, one of which was innovation, an educational theme at Blair.

Day and night

There were actually two parts to the event — a portion earlier in the school day for students and the two-hour late afternoon fair that was open to the public.

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Construction won't stop Waukesha's annual Memorial Day festivities

May 23, 2016 4:59 p.m. | Construction has slowed traffic in the city, but it won't stop the annual Memorial Day parade from marching through downtown on Monday, May 30.

The Waukesha Allied Veterans Council announced last week that the parade will be rerouted around the road work on Main Street, but the Memorial Day festivities will otherwise continue as planned.

Those festivities include a 9 a.m. river service in front of the State Office Building, 141 N.W. Barstow St., at the Fox River; the parade; and a program at Cutler Park to honor veterans, according to WAVC Secretary Walter Hahn.

During the river service, which will be overseen by women from the Marine Corps League, auxiliary chaplains from local veterans organizations will deliver their Memorial Day prayers. The service will end with the casting of flowers onto the water to honor those who died at sea, followed by a rifle salute and the playing of taps.

The parade line-up begins at 9:15 a.m. at the Schuetze Recreation Center in Frame Park. The parade starts at 10:15 a.m.

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Waukesha police report: May 26, 2016 issue

May 23, 2016 3:35 p.m. | 1Police had to remove an intoxicated 53-year-old man from an apartment complex in the 700 block of Summit Avenue around 8:03 a.m. May 13 at the request of a tenant, who said the man refused to leave. A police report said the man had somehow injured his foot and was "disagreeable with authority," but eventually left the apartment and was transported by ambulance to the hospital.

2A 14-year-old boy was drunk and reclining on the grass outside the Raymond P. Lauer Youth and Family center, 1515 Paramount Drive, around 12:28 p.m. May 13. The teenager, who according to a police report did not think he was intoxicated, refused to come back into the building. The situation was mitigated without police assistance.

3Two males were seen trying to break into a car around 12:39 p.m. May 13 behind St. Joseph's Catholic School, 818 N. East Ave. Both suspects drove away before police arrived but left a screwdriver in the door frame of a van, an incident report said. Police were unable to locate the suspects.

4A three-car accident around 2:29 p.m. May 13 at Brook and East North streets left at least one person injured. A woman cut her chin in the accident, and officers thought a male passenger in one of the other vehicles might have been hurt as well but could not confirm it.

5A resident in the 1000 block of Buena Vista Avenue reported the possible theft of a two-carat diamond ring — valued at $2,500 — from her home around 6:12 p.m. May 13. The resident claimed an in-home caretaker might be responsible for the theft. According to a police report, no other valuables were missing from the home.

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Greats Lakes panel approves Waukesha water application with conditions

May 23, 2016 1:25 p.m. | Waukesha's water diversion application is one step closer to final approval or dismissal following a vote last Wednesday, May 18 from Greats Lake Regional Body officials who affirmed the city's application complies with the Great Lakes Compact.

Specifically, the group voted that the application would comply with the compact if it met certain conditions, such as a reduced service or distribution area and a draw of no more than 8.2 million gallons of Lake Michigan water per day by mid-century.

The application is scheduled to go before the governors of the eight Great Lakes states for a final vote June 21 in Chicago.

"A final decision has not yet been made, but we are hopeful that all the Great Lakes states will agree with the regional body's findings," Waukesha Mayor Shawn Reilly said. "The citizens of Waukesha need the healthy and sustainable water supply that only borrowing and returning Lake Michigan water can reasonably provide."

Great Lakes conservation groups, which have opposed the application, released a statement the day of the regional body vote that said in part the groups were "disappointed that the regional body did not completely reject Waukesha's flawed diversion proposal."

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Q&A with Jody Landish, Waukesha schools' new assistant superintendent

May 23, 2016 1:22 p.m. | The Waukesha School Board named Jody Landish as the new assistant superintendent of teaching and learning, taking over for Ryan Krohn, who is moving on to a position as the director at The Institute for Personalsized Learning at CESA #1 in Pewaukee.

Landish has a long career in education, having been with the Waukesha School District for 14 of her 20 years as a teacher and administrator.

She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater with a Bachelor of Science degree and received her master's degree in education at Virginia Tech University. She also holds a Master of Science degree in Education Leadership from Cardinal Stritch University, where she received her principal and curriculum and instruction licenses.

Landish sat down the Waukesha Now to talk about her new role and what the district is doing or could do for students.

What are you most looking forward to as the new assistant superintendent for teaching and learning?

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Old Waukesha reform school will be razed, not reused

May 20, 2016 2:45 p.m. | The Waukesha School District's former environmental education building will soon be nothing more than a memory.

The school board voted unanimously this month to raze the historic building, which has sat vacant since 1997 and has been a topic of conversation since then to find a way to use it, Treasurer Kurt O'Bryan said.

Most recently, the board debated using the building — south of College Avenue between Prairie and Walton avenues, adjacent to the Waukesha STEM Academy's Saratoga campus — as part of STEM programs continued development.

"Over the years there have been attempts to reuse it or lease it out, but those have been to no avail," said Joseph Como, school board president.

Saratoga STEM is crowded and has a waiting list for prospective enrollees. Due to the program's popularity, the district considered using the environmental education building, as well as the Harvey Phillips buildings as sites for possible expansion of the STEM campus.

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