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Wisconsin roundup: Vice President attends Vukmir fundraiser; and more state news briefs

MILWAUKEE -- Vice President Mike Pence attended a closed-door fundraiser for U.S. Senate candidate Leah Vukmir in Milwaukee Thursday night. His presence was aimed at narrowing the financial gap between Vukmir and incumbent Democratic Sen. Tammy  Baldwin.

Pence spoke with reporters at Mitchell International Airport, saying Vukmir has served Wisconsin with distinction. He told them the Republican state representative would support President Trump's nominees to various federal court positions. Trump had endorsed her after Vukmir's primary win.

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Floodwaters nearly take 2 kayakers who had to be saved

CEDARBURG -- Rescuers from the Ozaukee County Sheriff's Office had to pull two kayakers out of flooded Cedar Creek Wednesday afternoon.

Their names haven't been released, but a 59-year-old woman and a 57-year-old man were dumped in the moving water when their kayaks overturned. A neighbor spotted the two as they were floating downstream. She threw a surfboard into the water and they used it to float to a log. Then, the water almost swept the neighbor away. The three held onto the log until the rescuers could pull them out. The man had to be taken to a hospital with minor injuries.

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Burlington police sergeant resigns in middle of investigation

BURLINGTON -- Burlington police say a sergeant who is being investigated about several accusations has submitted his resignation.  

Sgt. Matthew Baumhardt has been on administrative leave since the first of the month. Chief Mark Anderson says Baumhardt wasn't fired and he acted on his own.

The sergeant has been with Burlington police for more than seven years. He is being accused of sexual harassment, neglect of duty, unbecoming conduct and non-compliance with the law.  Kenosha County authorities are handling the investigation and the DA says she expects to make a decision soon about filing charges.

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Elkhorn police say woman was sexually assaulted, seriously injured

ELKHORN -- Relatives found a seriously-injured woman in her car after she was sexually assaulted Tuesday night. Elkhorn police say they are looking for a maroon conversion van with plastic covering a rear window.  

The victim wasn't able to communicate with officers when they arrived at the public parking lot on South Lincoln Street. She was taken to Aurora Lakeland Medical Center for treatment. Her name and medical condition haven't been released.  

Family members say they saw a man running away from the car as they arrived at about 10:15 p.m. They were looking for the woman because she had left her job and never arrived home.

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UPDATE -- Tornado count reaches 16, time now for cleanup work

MADISON -- A dry weather spell is giving Wisconsin residents a chance to clean up the damage from a series of storms which swept the state.  

The National Weather Service spent Thursday surveying the damage done in Fond du Lac, Green Lake, Marquette and Sheboygan counties. Five of the 16 tornadoes confirmed by the government meteorologists were in Fond du Lac County, the most powerful an E-F-2 with winds of 125 mph, which stayed on the ground for several miles. Wisconsin has experienced 26 confirmed tornadoes so far this year.

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8-year-old boy dies of head injury after he was hit by baseball

MISHICOT -- The Manitowoc County Sheriff's Office reports an 8-year-old boy has died of a head injury after he was hit by a baseball.  

The fatal injury was suffered Wednesday afternoon in Mishicot. Witnesses told deputies the victim collapsed after he was hit. Emergency responders took him to Aurora Medical Center in Two Rivers, where he died. The name of the victim hasn't been released. Although the death is still being investigated, authorities say it was apparently an accident.

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Youth prison nurse fired for failing to provide adequate care to inmate

IRMA -- One of four nurses who failed to realize a 14-year-old inmate's appendix was about to burst has been fired. The incident happened at the state's youth prison 2.5 years ago.  

The Wisconsin Department of Corrections determined nurse Kitty Hasse failed to provide adequate care on at least four occasions. The other three nurses received additional training, but they kept their jobs.  

Six days after he became sick the boy was finally rushed to a hospital, underwent emergency surgery and survived. The FBI is investigating claims of abuse at Lincoln Hills-Copper Lake and the facilities are scheduled to be closed in 2021.

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Wauwatosa considers fee to pay for fixing roads

WAUWATOSA -- Wauwatosa city leaders are considering a $30 wheel tax as a way to pay for needed repairs on local roads.

Car owners already pay a $75 state registration fee and a $30 Milwaukee County registration fee each year. That would go up by almost 29 percent. A public hearing will be held in October and the Wauwatosa City Council could vote on the new fee in November.  

The proposed tax would raise an estimated $800,000 a year.

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More cruise ships could be sailing Great Lakes soon

MACKINAC ISLAND, Mich.  -- Officials from several states and Canadian provinces are working on an initiative to bring cruise ships to the Great Lakes. The new marketing partnership effort was announced Thursday.  

"Cruise the Great Lakes" is aimed at growing cruise ship tourism significantly over the next few years. An estimated 100,000 passengers are expected to visit the region on eight ships by the time this tourist season is over. That number could jump to 10 cruises ships operating on the lakes by 2020.

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Sen, Johnson likes renegotiation of NAFTA

WASHINGTON, DC -- U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson says renegotiating parts of the North American Free Trade Agreement will be good for Wisconsin farmers. The Wisconsin Republican says Mexico is the largest market for Wisconsin cheese.  

After reaching agreement with Mexico, Trump administration negotiators are trying to get a deal done with Canada as quickly, but that nation hasn't participated in talks yet. The new deal will replace NAFTA.

Johnson says he wishes the agreement could have finalized sooner. He says the next target should be reaching fair and full reciprocity with China in trade deals, including an agreement that country would stop stealing industrial and military secrets.

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Milwaukee organizers upbeat after selection visit for 2020 Democratic Convention

MILWAUKEE -- Milwaukee organizers are calling a site selection visit for the 2020 Democratic Convention very successful.  

Officials met with committee members Tuesday and Wednesday, touring sites and holding breakout sessions to discuss security, transportation, and housing. Milwaukee hopes to beat out Houston and Miami Beach to host the convention. Democrats will make their choice by early next year.

Sarah Nigbor

Sarah J. Nigbor serves as a regional editor for RiverTown Multimedia, a position she began in April 2017. She joined RiverTown Multimedia in October 2013 as a news reporter for the New Richmond News, before being appointed editor of the Pierce County Herald in February 2015. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-River Falls with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Spanish and French in 2001. She completed a minor in journalism in 2004. 

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