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Rusk County News

WLDY-WJBL NEWS 12-7-17

MADISON, Wis. (WEAU) — Gov. Scott Walker has ordered flags to be flown at half-staff to commemorate Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.

The order is effective at sunrise on Thursday, December 7, 2017, and ends at sunset on that date.

“The attack on Pearl Harbor serves to remind us all that our nation’s blessings of freedom are not free: their price is paid willingly and selflessly by our courageous men and women in uniform,” said Walker. “No words can fully express our gratitude for the brave service members who sacrificed their lives 76 years ago today, or our gratitude for all our veterans and service members who have dedicated themselves to tirelessly defending our ideals and keeping us safe and free.”

The winter pattern continues while we get a break from the cloudier conditions and flurries. Much of the day will be mostly sunny and highs will be in the lower 20’s. The breeze will remain, keeping it feeling colder with chill values again in the single digits much of the day. Clouds will again be moving back in by the evening hours out ahead of a cold front that will be dropping down from the north. This front will have little moisture but should at least produce scattered flurries and a few snow showers as it arrives and moves through Thursday night into early Friday. Winds will shift more to the west and southwest before the front passes, which would help get temperatures to rise a bit more with highs in the mid-upper 20’s.

A quick moving clipper system will then drop down behind this weak front, bringing a better chance for some light snow Friday night. Currently it appears we will have a chance to see an inch or two of snow with this exiting by early Saturday. Colder air will then follow, dropping highs back down into the upper teens Saturday with some breezes returning.

Wednesday morning at 9:25 AM, the Rusk County Sheriff’s Office received a one vehicle accident report on Highway 8 near Cranberry Road West of Weyerhaeuser. Rusk County deputies, Ladysmith ambulance and the Weyerhaeuser Fire Department responded to the scene. According to the report, after an investigation, a Rusk County deputy advised that the driver of the vehicle lost control and slid into oncoming traffic and rolled into the South ditch. The driver was issued a citation for failure to maintain control of the vehicle.

(WQOW) – Three area people have been indicted by a federal grand jury.

Shane Johnson, 40, Chippewa Falls, is charged with possessing 50 grams or more of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. The indictment alleges that he possessed the methamphetamine on November 23, 2017. If convicted, Johnson faces a mandatory minimum penalty of five years and a maximum penalty of 40 years in federal prison.

Deborah R. Marcellus, 63, Turtle Lake, is charged with seven counts of wire fraud and four counts of filing a false income tax return. The indictment alleges that she filed false income tax returns for 2012, 2013, 2014, and 2015, in which she under-reported her adjusted gross income. The indictment alleges that from January 2011 to April 2017, Marcellus devised a scheme to defraud St. Joseph’s Catholic Congregation, a church and parish located in Rice Lake.

During this time period, Marcellus served as the Director of Development for St. Joseph’s, and was responsible for handling all financial and accounting matters for the church. The indictment alleges that Marcellus misappropriated approximately $818,604 from St. Joseph’s bank accounts and used the funds for her personal benefit, including gambling. The indictment also alleges that Marcellus generated checks to herself from checking accounts maintained by St. Joseph’s, and concealed her conduct by changing the name of the payee for the checks to a legitimate vendor of the church in the financial records maintained by the church.

In addition, the indictment alleges that Marcellus forged the signature of an authorized signatory for the St. Joseph’s checking accounts on the fraudulently obtained checks. If convicted, Marcellus faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison on each of the wire fraud charges, and five years on each of the tax charges.

Daniel Swessel, 33, Barron, is charged with two counts of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. The indictment alleges that he possessed methamphetamine on September 1 and October 11, 2017, and further alleges that on October 11, he possessed 50 grams or more of the drug.
If convicted, Swessel faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison on count 1, and a mandatory minimum penalty of five years and a maximum of 40 years on count 2. The charges against him are the result of an investigation by the Barron County Sheriff’s Office.

(Press Release) –  The approach of another holiday season means Interstates and other multi-lane highways will be busy. The Wisconsin State Patrol Law of the Month for December reminds freeway drivers that signs asking Slower Traffic to Keep Right provide more than just a suggestion its the law.

For example, Wisconsin law 346.59 prohibits drivers from traveling at a speed so slow as to impede the normal and reasonable movement of traffic. Violations can result in a $175 citation. Our concern is drivers who monopolize the passing lane on freeways, because it greatly increases the potential for tailgating, crashes and road rage incidents, said Wisconsin State Patrol Captain Nick Wanink of the Northwest Region.

When motorists linger in the passing lane for any reason – such as an ill-advised attempt to slow down traffic – they’re making an illegal and potentially dangerous decision. Unless you need to legally pass another vehicle, its best to remain in the right lane and let law enforcement deal with potential speeders.

Other laws and safety issues impacting freeway travelers: Move over a lane if possible or slow down when approaching a stopped law enforcement vehicle, ambulance, fire truck, tow truck, highway maintenance or utility vehicle that has its warning lights flashing. The goal of the states Move Over Law (346.072) is to provide a safety zone for roadside workers. Violations can result in a $263 fine.

Median crossovers are for authorized vehicles only – using them to turn around is dangerous and illegal. When a vehicle slows to turn onto a crossover, it can result in serious rear-end crashes or cause other drivers to take evasive action. The only safe and legal option to turn around on a freeway is to proceed to the next interchange and use the off/on ramps. Illegally crossing a divided highway (346.15) can also result in a fine of up to $263.

As a matter of public safety and courtesy, freeway drivers should try to accommodate traffic merging from a ramp. While merging vehicles are required to yield, freeway drivers are encouraged to shift over a lane if possible or adjust their speed slightly to accommodate merging traffic.

 

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