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Wisconsin state news briefs: Supreme Court justices question liberal group challenging lame duck session, more state news stories

MADISON -- One justice on the Wisconsin Supreme Court asked the group challenging last December's lame-duck special session if she should rule the Legislature has been violating the state Constitution for four decades.  

Justice Rebecca Bradley was one of the conservative justices who questioned the liberal-leaning group who want the laws passed during that session tossed out. Republicans and their attorneys say lawmakers can call a session anytime they want. The high court is expected to issue a ruling this summer.

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Madison gym teacher charged with child abuse

MADISON -- A veteran gym teacher with the Madison Metropolitan School District has been charged with child abuse for allegedly slamming a door in a boy's face. The incident happened last month.  

Sixty-year-old Christopher Rumbelow is charged with one count of reckless child abuse causing bodily harm. Witnesses say he slammed a door in a student's face, causing an injury to his forehead. Several staff members told investigators Rumbelow seemed to be frustrated. He makes a Dane County court appearance this morning.

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Columbia County man will serve prison time for selling guns without license

MADISON -- A 66-year-old Columbia County man will serve just over one year in federal prison for selling guns without a legal license.  

Eugene Ripp had entered a guilty plea in February. Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives had warned the Arlington man about the illegal activity, but he kept doing it until he was taken into custody.  

Ripp was selling weapons at gun shows under the trade name of "Son of a Gun."

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Second man headed to prison for involvement in gunfight outside Wausau bar

WAUSAU -- A Marathon County judge has sentenced a second man to prison for his involvement in a gunfight outside a Wausau bar nearly four years ago.  

Brian Fisher exchanged at least 15 shots with another man. He pleaded guilty to a charge of recklessly endangering safety and was handed the four-year sentence.  

The other man, Morgan Sykes, was already sentenced to nine years in prison.

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Appleton police officer, firefighter among 4 people wounded at Transit Center

APPLETON -- A shooting incident Wednesday at the Appleton transit center left four people wounded, including a police officer and a firefighter.

Emergency responders had rushed to the center for what was originally described as a medical call. Witnesses report hearing several gunshots shortly after 5:30 p.m. Although police couldn't confirm any arrests, one witness says she saw a man being handcuffed while he was on the ground. The names of those involved and the severity of their injuries hasn't been released.

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Wisconsin finds $753M windfall after spike in tax collections

MADISON -- Federal tax law changes have provided the state of Wisconsin with $753 million in revenue which wasn't expected. The extra money is showing up at the same time lawmakers are working on the two-year spending plan.  

Gov. Tony Evers says $56 million should be used to pay down debt and $33 million should go to technical colleges and workforce development. Some Republican leaders say they agree about paying down the state's debt, but they want to put some of the money in reserve and give the rest back to taxpayers.

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Man charged in double murder must undergo competency exam

MANITOWOC -- A judge in Manitowoc County Circuit Court has ordered a competency examination for a man charged with two killings.  

Thirty-five-year-old Karl Hess made a court appearance Wednesday, entering pleas of not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect to two counts of first-degree intentional homicide. Police say Hess shot 52-year-old Richard Miller and his 19-year-old daughter Jocelyn to death last September. He is being held on a $1 million cash bond.

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Man suspected of spraying deputy with pepper spray arrested

SAUK PRAIRIE -- Family and friends of a man suspected of spraying a deputy with a can of pepper spray say he may be going through a mental health crisis.  

Thirty-year-old Joshua Martin is accused of attacking the Columbia County deputy during a traffic stop Monday. Dashcam video shows the deputy approaching the truck he had just stopped, them stumbling away while the truck drives off. Martin was taken into custody in the Sauk Prairie area two days later.

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Monroe man tells investigators he thought 16-year-old girl was older

MONROE -- A Monroe man who faces 10 charges for having sex with a 16-year-old girl tells investigators he thought she was older.  

Justin C. Stocker is accused of exploiting the underage victim. Police say Stocker admitted to having sex with the teenager, but they say he claimed he didn't know she was underage.  Stocker made an appearance in Green County Circuit Court earlier this week where his bond was set. He returns for another hearing June 21.

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Wisconsin Assembly honors kidnapping victim Jayme Closs of Barron

MADISON -- The Wisconsin General Assembly is honoring Jayme Closs of Barron as a "hometown hero."  

The 13-year-old girl and family were in the chamber Wednesday while State Rep. Romaine Quinn spoke of the tragic events from Oct. 15, 2018. Jake Patterson shot her parents, abducted Jayme and held her in his home in Gordon for 88 days. She was able to escape Jan. 10 and flag down neighbors.  

Quinn said, "Jayme, your strength, your resolve and your bravery is beyond incredible. You are truly an inspiration and a bright light during a time of sadness."  

Jayme did not speak during the event. Her aunt Jennifer Smith said the hometown hero award is not only a recognition of Jayme, but also all of the support shown by the community.

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Teenage boy on bike suffers accidental gunshot wound in Two Rivers

TWO RIVERS -- Authorities in Manitowoc County are investigating the apparent accidental shooting a teen in Two Rivers.  

Police responded to the report of someone falling off a bike around 9 p.m. Tuesday and found a boy with a gunshot wound to the head. Officers said in a news release "preliminary investigation indicates the injury was accidental in nature."  

It's unclear whether the teen or someone else fired the gun. He was taken to the hospital but police did not release his current condition.

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Vote to allow ATVs on Rhinelander roads put off until June

RHINELANDER -- The Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce is solidly behind the idea of allowing people to operate their ATVs on city roads. The chamber's board of directors says it has spoken to residents while conducting research on the question -- and it found support for the idea.  

Rhinelander City Council members are expected to vote on the final proposal at the June 10 meeting. ATV drivers would have to be at least 16 years old and the vehicles would have a 35 mile-an-hour speed limit.

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Wauwatosa Health Department warns of chickenpox exposure

WAUWAUTOSA -- The Wauwatosa Health Department is advising parents of students at Longfellow Middle School they should take their children to a doctor. There is the possibility they have been exposed to chickenpox.  

One case has been confirmed at the school. The health department suggests making sure their children have had a chickenpox vaccination for protection.