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Local News Briefs Thursday 12/10/15

Motion Denied To Dismiss Drug Charges Against Beck Murder Suspect

Drug charges against the 62-year-old Kenosha man suspected of killing Berit Beck won’t be dismissed. Fond du Lac County Judge Peter Grimm this week denied the motion made by Dennis Brantner’s lawyer. The drugs were found while Brantner was being searched while being booked at the County Jail last March for Beck’s murder. A jury trial is scheduled on the drug possession and bail jumping charges next month. Brantner is suspected of killing Beck during the summer of 1990. She stopped in Fond du Lac on her way to a computer seminar in Appleton that July. Six weeks later her body was found in a ditch outside of Waupun. Brantner’s fingerprints were found inside Beck’s van. He is being in the County Jail on a $1 million cash bond.

Polk County DA Pleads Not Guilty To FDL County Charges

The Polk County District Attorney who is suspected of driving drunk on Highway 23 in Fond du Lac County has pled not guilty to OWI 1st and speeding charges. Daniel Steffen submitted those pleas in writing for a hearing held this week. He was allegedly doing 70 miles per hour in a 55 mile per hour zone when he was pulled over by a Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s deputy last month. Steffen is in his third term as Polk County District Attorney. According to the Polk County website one of the programs he helped create and implement during his tenure as DA is an OWI Prevention Committee.

FDL Fire And Rescue Receiving Grant

Fond du Lac Fire and Rescue will receive a $3,000 grant today from FM Global Insurance Company. Division Chief of Fire Prevention Troy Haase says they will use money to buy computers they can use on-site while doing fire inspections. He says they will purchase a few computers that double as tablets. Haase says they look for grant opportunities that allow them to purchase equipment and at the same time ease the burden on city taxpayers. 

Ripon Common Council Wants Water And Sewer Rate Increase

The Ripon Common Council this week discussed a proposed 3 percent increase in water and sewer rates. The last rate increase the city had was in 2011 and 2012 and it was phased in because it was a large increase of 11 percent. Ripon City Administrator Lori Rich says the rate increase will go into effect next March 1st. The Council also passed a resolution terminating Tax Incremental District #1. Rich says it was their original downtown TID and it served its purpose well. She says they are required by the State’s Department of Revenue to close it out after the December and January tax cycle.

Solutions Center Drop In Opportunity At Thelma Tonight

The Solutions Center of Fond du Lac will be hosting a drop-in opportunity at the Thelma Sadoff Center for the Arts for people who would like to learn more about the services they provide in Fond du Lac. It’s being called “Home for the Holidays” and will be from 5 to 7 p.m. They serve victims of domestic abuse and the homeless population in the County. They have three year round shelters and a warming shelter that is only open during the winter months.  Solutions Center Executive Director Nicole Johnson says people will be available to field questions about what they do. She says they will have staff and board of directors’ members will be available in the lounge upstairs. She says it won’t be all business though. She says they will have artwork from some of their support groups; you enjoy a cup of cider or take advantage of a cash bar while you find out about their services.

Oshkosh Police Participating In Drive Sober Campaign

Oshkosh Police are joining other law enforcement agencies across Wisconsin in “Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over” campaign. It begins Friday, December 18th and runs through January 3rd.  Police officials say rather than run the risk of a drunken driving arrest of crash, choose a designated driver. You can also call a taxi or a sober friend. You can also check the Tavern League of Wisconsin website to see if the tavern or restaurant you’re at participates in the Safe Ride program.