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Rusk County News


A Ladysmith man faces reckless homicide charges for a hit and run crash that left a man dead.

Michael Niles is charged in Rusk County for the February death of Joseph Hraban. Before he died Hraban told police he was standing next to his pickup truck when he saw a car approaching at a high rate of speed without its headlights on. The car spun out of control, hitting Hraban, then left the scene. Police say a local bartender told them she had kicked Niles out of the bar that night along with two others due to their behavior.

Niles told police he should not have been driving because he had too much to drink. He said he lost control of the car while turning up the radio, and fled the scene because he was scared. Thursday in court the judge refused to lower his $100,000 bond. He returns to court in May.

Thursday afternoon at about 1:30, a female subject from the Flambeau School District reported that she received reports that a male student was threatening another student and is in possession of a knife. After an investigation, a Rusk County deputy requested Probation be contacted as the male student will be receiving a citation for possession of drug Paraphernalia. The male student was found to be in possession of a boot style knife while at school and a Marijuana smoking device. The knife was seized for safe keeping. The Flambeau School will be following through with school violations.

Also Thursday afternoon, Rusk County dispatch received a 911 from a male subject reporting that he was burning a brush pile at a location on Cranberry Road, Hawkins and it got out of control. The Hawkins Fire Department and the DNR were called to the scene. No other information was available.

Thursday morning Ladysmith Police reported that a male subject advised that he received a phone call from the IRS advising he was being sued. The subject advised that he thinks this was a scam.

Early Thursday afternoon, Ladysmith Police was advised of a criminal damage to property complaint at the Ladysmith High School. According to the report, the Ladysmith Police Officer met with the complainant and the 17 year old suspect. The male student admitted to punching two walls causing damage to the dry wall. The subject was issued a citation for Criminal Damage to Property.

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