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DOT official fired over Facebook rant; Store owner gives away No. 85 gear, says Jennings crossed the line; It’s not Wisconsin cream in those puffs; more state briefs

Gov. Scott Walker fired the No. 3 official in the state Department of Transportation Department for comparing undocumented immigrants to Satan during a rant on Facebook.

Assistant Deputy Secretary Steven Krieser was let go Thursday, less than two hours after the governor’s office caught wind of the incident. Krieser was responding to comments about a controversial bumper sticker when he wrote that a “stream of wretched criminals” is crossing the border, ruining southern states and industries and breeding what he called “the animus that many American citizens feel toward them.”

Walker spokesman Tom Evenson called the remarks “repugnant, completely unacceptable, and have no place in Gov. Walker’s administration.”

It all started Wednesday, when state Assembly Democrat Gordon Hintz of Oshkosh posted a note on Facebook criticizing a bumper sticker that’s being sold at a Germantown gas station. The sticker read, “USA Illegal Immigrant Hunting Permit – No Bag Limit – Tagging Not Required.”

Former Assembly Republican Joe Handrick of Minocqua later posted another criticism of the bumper sticker, saying it would cause people to focus their anger on the immigrants instead of what he called a broken system.

Krieser then disagreed with Handrick and went into his blistering attack. He told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel he withdrew his post, and he did not write it on a state computer during work hours.

Among other things, he said, “The whole social safety net and educational systems of entire southern states have been crushed under the weight of these criminals, who commit another crime with every breath they take here, having snuck across the border.”

The Journal Sentinel said it bought the last hunting permit bumper sticker at the Germantown gas station yesterday for $6.


Store owner gives away No. 85 gear, says Jennings crossed the line

A sports clothing store near Green Bay gave away all of its remaining Greg Jennings gear yesterday after the former Packers receiver said the team “brainwashed” him when he played there.

The Jersey Store in Ashwaubenon gave away about 200 jerseys, hats and T-shirts with Jennings’ old No. 85, and it was all gone by 2 p.m.

Store manager Mike Walters told WLUK TV that the owner just wanted to get rid of the Jennings items.

Jack Kotleski of Racine said he could use his jersey as a door-mat because he likes his dog too much to use it as a dog bed.

Jennings became just the latest ex-Packer to sign with Minnesota. On Wednesday, Jennings told a Twin Cities radio station that the Packers’ management brainwashed players into believing that the Green Bay organization is head and shoulders above every other team in its division.

Walters said Jennings would frequent his store when he played with the Pack, and he’s not sure what happened after Jennings put on the purple and gold.

Recently, Jennings accused Packers’ quarterback Aaron Rodgers of caring more about himself than about the team. His new coach took him to the woodshed for that, and Jennings later apologized.


It’s not Wisconsin cream in those puffs

The legendary cream puffs at the Wisconsin State Fair are hot items, even after we learned that the cream is from an out-of-state company for the first time in 89 years.

The Golden Guernsey dairy in Waukesha traditionally provided the cream until the plant closed in January.

The Wisconsin Bakers Association scrambled to find somebody else. It hired Prairie Farms of Carlinville, Ill. The bakers knew the uproar it might create so they had the firm explain that the milk for the cream puffs still comes from Wisconsin, as far north as Hwy. 29.

Schmidt said his group tried to get a Wisconsin dairy as the supplier, but nobody could provide up to 1,500 gallons of cream that’s needed for each day of the 11-day State Fair.

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel columnist Jim Stingl asked some cream puff eaters what they thought about an Illinois firm providing one of Wisconsin’s signature products. One said it tasted good, but he felt cheap afterward. Another called it the new normal since everything seems to come from somewhere else.

Sales are still hot. If the weather stays good, the bakers will sell over 400,000 cream puffs for only the second time since they were introduced at the State Fair in 1924. The fair runs through Sunday in West Allis.


Man killed on Lac Courte Oreilles Reservation

State, county and tribal police are investigating the shooting death of a 26-year-old man on the Lac Courte Oreilles Indian reservation in northwest Wisconsin.

Sawyer County authorities said the man was shot late Wednesday night in an apartment where he did not live. The victim’s name was not immediately released, and authorities have not said whether foul play was involved.

Sawyer County sheriff’s deputies are investigating along with tribal police, the state Department of Justice and the State Patrol.


15 more protesters arrested at Capitol

About 15 protesters were arrested and cited at the State Capitol rotunda Thursday.

The singing group continues to protest without a permit, maintaining they are exercising their right to free speech.

Over 175 citations have been issued over the past two weeks after a judge allowed for permit requirements of 20 or more people to gather at the rotunda.


Minneapolis cops not charged in Green Bay incident

No charges will be filed against two Minneapolis police officers who got into a racially charged street confrontation in Green Bay and then reportedly criticized local officers.

Minneapolis officers Shawn Powell and Brian Thole, who are white, reportedly argued with a group of black men outside a bar June 29, and one of the officers admitted throwing a punch.

The black group was gone by the time Green Bay Police got there, and their names never got into a police report. Assistant City Attorney Kail Decker said it would have been hard to prove assault charges without knowing who the victims were.

Also, Decker told Minneapolis Star Tribune he did not know why police didn’t pursue non-criminal disorderly conduct citations in municipal court since the officers were caught on police video making racial slurs. A police spokesman did not comment on that.

The Minneapolis mayor and police chief have both expressed outrage. The chief apologized to Green Bay police, removed the two officers from the Minneapolis SWAT team and put them on paid leave pending an internal investigation.


Budget director challenges Walker’s claim that Milwaukee saved $25 million

Milwaukee’s budget director says Gov. Scott Walker is wrong by claiming that the city saved $25 million through the state’s Act 10 public union bargaining limits.

Mark Nicolini said the governor should have also mentioned the reductions in state aid and grants that Milwaukee suffered since 2011 when the Republican Walker took office. When those are figured in, Nicolini said Milwaukee actually lost $6.6 million due to Walker’s overall budget actions.

The city’s chief budget analyst said Milwaukee did save around $20 million in direct Act 10 reforms – things like increased employee payments for their health insurance and pensions and costs that are no longer be bargained by the unions.

But Nicolini said Milwaukee’s state street aids and shared revenues fell by almost $14 million since 2011, and some other grant monies were lost as well.

Walker mentioned Milwaukee’s Act 10 savings when he rejected the mayor’s request this week for $500,000 in state funds to help the city end its recent rash of shootings.


Five people killed in Milwaukee in past week

Five people have been killed in Milwaukee since last Friday.

The latest victims were a 26-year-old man shot and killed around 4:15 p.m. Wednesday on a north side residential street. Police said the victim got into an argument that escalated to a fight and property damage. The suspects left the area for a time, and then came back and shot the victim.

The second murder happened around 10:45 p.m. Wednesday on Milwaukee’s northwest side. Details were not immediately available.

Twenty people have killed or wounded in Milwaukee in the last six days. The city’s homicide toll for the year stands at 52, and officials said two others were near death after being gravely wounded in a pair of robberies on Tuesday.


Former boutique owner dies in home fire

A woman who died in a condominium fire in Delafield used to own a high-end boutique in downtown Milwaukee.

Waukesha County authorities have not released the victim’s name from the Wednesday night blaze, but Milwaukee TV stations say she’s 36-year-old Sarah Brucker.

She opened the Blush Beauty Boutique in 2004. The current owner said she was a well-known makeup artist who made other people comfortable while having them look their best.

Authorities said the fire started in Brucker’s condo unit, but the cause remains under investigation. Her husband and two children were elsewhere at the time. Two other families escaped unharmed.

Fourteen units from area fire departments responded to the blaze. The Lake Country Reporter said a town of Lisbon fire truck got into a crash while responding to the scene. The truck was hit by another vehicle at an intersection. The driver of the other vehicle was the only one hurt. That person was taken to a Waukesha hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.