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Wisconsin roundup: Man accused of hiding corpse say woman died during sex; more state news stories

TOWN OF BELOIT — A 50-year-old Beloit man says he was having sex with Nakiela Thompson when she died.

Marco Rodriguez is accused of hiding the 27-year-old woman's body. He told investigators Thompson texted him the night she died, telling him to meet her in at Beloit park. Rodriguez says he'd been paying her $20 to have sex with him over the previous two months. He dumped her body at an Illinois truck stop.


Slender Man stabbing victim’s mom pens statement for court

WAUKESHA — The mother of the girl stabbed 19 times by her classmates in 2014 says her daughter slept with scissors for security and threw herself into her school work to deal with the trauma.

One of the girl's who attacked Payton Leutner in what has been called the "Slender Man" case is to be sentenced Thursday in Waukesha County court. Stacie Leutner told the court her daughter has 25 scars. Anissa Weier and Morgan Geyser will be sent to a mental facility. Weier appears in court tomorrow, while Geyser's sentencing is set for February.


Fired Salvation Army bellringer accused of threats

BROWN DEER — The Salvation Army reports one of its employees and a bell-ringer were threatened at knife point Tuesday by another bell-ringer who had just been fired.

The incident happened at a Red Kettle donation site in Brown Deer. Army officials say the same fired worker made additional threats in a call to the Salvation Army of Milwaukee County's Citadel Corps. Shortly after the original incident outside a Walgreens store, 40 other Red Kettle locations were closed as a precaution. No injuries or arrests have been reported.


Wood County rejects ordinance on horse-drawn buggies

WISCONSIN RAPIDS — An ordinance that would basically force horse-drawn buggies to follow the same rules as cars has been rejected in Wood County.

The Tuesday meeting where the change was discussed filled the county boardroom with onlookers. Many speakers called the rules discriminatory. Board member Bill Winch says he brought the ordinance up because many of his constituents have had close calls with buggies. He says he's been accused of not liking the Amish, but he's just trying to make things safer.


La Crosse man given 10-year sentence for hitting detective with car

LA CROSSE — A 25-year-old La Crosse man is going to prison for 10 years for hitting a police investigator with his car.

The incident happened last year in Holmen. Brandon Ritter entered guilty pleas to charges of manufacturing and delivering meth, and second-degree recklessly endangering safety. Police Investigator James Mancuso suffered minor injuries in the incident. He fired four shots into Ritter's car shortly before the impact.


Former Wis. DNR leader chosen for EPA regional position

MADISON — A former head of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources has been chosen to be regional administrator for the EPA.

Cathy Stepp led the DNR in August. Stepp will oversee the enforcement of environmental protection laws and regulations for the six-state region which includes Wisconsin. Stepp takes the position at a time environmentalists are voicing concerns about the impact of a $10 billion flat-screen production plant in southeastern Wisconsin.


Trempealeau County contends DA committed a felony

TREMPEALEAU — The board of supervisors in Trempealeau County is asking the governor to suspend its district attorney and start an investigation.

County leaders accuse DA Taavi McMahon of committing a felony while holding that office. They say he lied to a county judge when he said he'd submitted an affidavit to the state Department of Administration in October. The affidavit was apparently never submitted. The board also accuses the DA of violating the legal code of ethics by lying.


Ryan repeats intention to keep job in Congress

WASHINGTON — Wisconsin Republican Paul Ryan got a standing ovation in the House of Representatives Tuesday when he repeated his intention to say on the job.

Reports had emerged last week that the House Speaker was thinking about leaving Congress at the end of his current two-year term, or possibly after the Republican tax bill is passed. In a closed-door meeting with other Republicans Ryan reportedly said it made no sense to leave when "we're winning and have the momentum." Ryan became Speaker of the House two years ago when he replaced John Boehner.


Madison man arrested for theft of $6,000 bike

MADISON — A careless bike thief was caught by an oversight.

He failed to remove a sticker bearing the owner's name which was on the bike when he pawned it at a Madison shop. Thirty-one-year-old Michael Lowe is charged with felony theft and bail-jumping. The owner says the Trek Domain Series Six Carbon Fiber Racing Bicycle is worth $6,000. He spotted it on Craigslist last week. Pawn shop records were used to identify the thief. The secondary seller wasn't aware the bike had been stolen.