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Wisconsin roundup: Exposure blamed for 3 state deaths; more state news stories

MADISON — The Dane County Medical Examiner's Office says hypothermia was at least a contributing factor in three weekend deaths.

The body of 84-year-old Alice McGaw was found Friday near the Faith Garden Memory Care assisted living center where she lived. Sixty-year-old Jeffrey Bracey of Madison was talking when first responders found him Friday, but he wasn't dressed for the weather.

Paramedics lost his pulse in the ambulance as he was being taken to a hospital. And, the body of 57-year-old Vance Perry was found in a downtown parking ramp Sunday morning when the temperature was below zero. The Georgia man had walked away from a hospital earlier the same day.


Days before sentencing, businessman wants to withdraw guilty plea

GREEN BAY — The attorney for a De Pere businessman says his client wants to withdraw his guilty plea to bank fraud conspiracy charges.

That step was taken after two motions to delay sentencing for Ron Van Den Heuvel were denied. He had entered a guilty plea last October. Van Den Heavel is now asserting both factual and legal innocence of the charges, according to his attorney. He says the plea was forced and he entered it to clear his wife and a co-defendant.


Another infant death thought to be victim of co-sleeping

MILWAUKEE — A preliminary investigation by Milwaukee police reveals co-sleeping may have caused the first infant death of 2018.

Emergency responders were called to a home at 5:35 a.m. Tuesday to find a 7-week-old girl dead. The Milwaukee County Medical Examiner's Office reports 20 of the 45 infant deaths investigated in 2017 were caused by an unsafe sleeping environment. That's nearly double the number of infant deaths blamed on co-sleeping during 2016.


Speed, alcohol likely factors in snowmobile crash

TOMAHAWK — The Lincoln County Sheriff's Department reports speed and alcohol are thought to be factors in a snowmobile accident.

A 24-year-old man has been cited for operating a snowmobile while intoxicated. The deputy handling the case noted excessive speed was the leading factor in the crash. The man's name hasn't been released. He was operating the vehicle in the town of Bradley last Friday at about 2 a.m. when he lost control and was thrown free. Tomahawk emergency responders transported him to a Wausau hospital. He is expected to survive.


Twitter blocks former Milwaukee County Sheriff Clarke

WASHINGTON —  A former Milwaukee County sheriff was put in read-only mode by Twitter until he deleted three of his tweets seeming to call for violence against the media.

David A. Clarke Jr. had been blocked for violating Twitter’s terms of service. After deleting the tweets, he insisted he won't be intimidated into silence by what he calls the "lying liberal media." Twitter rules ban users from making specific threats of violence, or calls for the serious physical harm or death of an individual or group of people.


Brown County: Armed robbers motivated by drug use

GREEN BAY — Investigators with the Brown County Sheriff's Department say three men accused of committing a series of armed robberies were motivated by their drug use.

Thirty-four-year-old Jeffrey William Gross of De Pere, 28-year-old Darrin K. Hill of Oneida and 25-year-old Joshua James Way of Seymour were arrested Saturday. In each robbery, witnesses told of a knife-carrying suspect taking money from the restaurant or store. Investigators say each of the suspects faces a maximum of 40 years in prison on each offense, if convicted. It is thought that Way committed the robberies and Gross and Hill served as getaway drivers.


Pickup driver charged with OWI in Kenosha County fatality

KENOSHA — The Kenosha County Sheriff's Office reports the 38-year-old driver of a pickup which crossed the centerline and caused a head-on crash has been charged with operating while intoxicated.

The charge could be upgraded because the driver of the car he hit, a 54-year-old woman, was dead at the scene, and a 7-year-old boy was injured. No names have been released. The accident happened on Kenosha County Highway K Monday at 6:30 p.m.


Police investigate death of man who ‘wandered away’ from hospital

MADISON — The Dane County Medical Examiner's Office will conduct an autopsy on the body of a 57-year-old man who was found dead near the state capitol Sunday morning.

Investigators have been told the man "wandered away" from a Madison hospital. His name hasn't been released. Police say there were no signs of trauma. City parking utility workers had reported the discovery at about 8:30 a.m. Sunday. When he was reported missing, officers had checked the man's home, but he wasn't there.


Suspect wanted in violent Madison attack arrested in Mo.

MADISON — Police say a 25-year-old man wanted in connection with a violent early December attack on a Madison woman has been taken into custody.

Madison police said Tuesday that Dalwayne Howard Jr. was arrested in Springfield, Missouri, by the U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force. Howard is accused of violently assaulting a woman he knew on Dec. 13. The victim, a woman in her 20s, told police she feared she was going to be killed when Howard bound, choked and beat her with a wooden dowel. He also burned her with cigarette ashes. She suffered significant facial injuries.