Mike Longaecker is the regional public safety reporter for RiverTown Multimedia. His coverage area spans St. Croix and Pierce counties. Longaecker served from 2011-2015 as editor of the Woodbury Bulletin. A University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate, Longaecker previously reported for the Red Wing Republican Eagle and for the Forum Communications Minnesota Capitol Bureau. You can follow him on Twitter at @Longaecker
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Two teenagers were charged with felonies after the window of a man's vehicle was shot out in a Somerset parking lot last week. St. Croix County prosecutors charged Bailey A. Huot, 18, and 17-year-old Israel Morua with one count each of first-degree recklessly endangering safety after the Thursday, Jan. 4, incident outside Subway on Parent Street.
Fire crews from around St. Croix County responded Tuesday morning to a house fire in the town of Kinnickinnic. The fire was reported at about 9:20 a.m. Jan. 9 at 1237 County Road N — in between River Falls and Roberts. The home, owned by Bradley and DK Bockus Kinkaid, was unoccupied at the time of the fire. According to River Falls firefighters, crews arrived to find the fire "had progressed rapidly," including heavy smoke and fire inside the home.
A man on bond for a sexploitation case was arrested last week on suspicion of drug charges after authorities raided his Houlton-area home. Brandon W. Brown, 23, was one of two men charged in connection with the Jan. 2 incident in the town of St. Joseph. He and 19-year-old Cameron A. Brown, were both charged with felony THC possession with intent to deliver. The elder Brown is also charged with felony heroin possession.
Spotlight draws arrest A deputy stopped Jan. 4 at W3202 160th Ave. in Maiden Rock to tell a man that his high-powered spotlight was blinding motorists. The man was arrested for two warrants. Puppy mill report investigated
Fire crews from around St. Croix County responded Tuesday morning to a house fire in the town of Kinnickinnic. The fire was reported at about 9:20 a.m. Jan. 9 at 1237 County Road N — in between River Falls and Roberts. Initial scanner traffic suggested the home was not occupied at the time of the fire.
A Hudson business owner accused of putting a gun to his estranged wife's head was arrested Thursday after an extensive search that prompted security measures at two schools. The St. Croix County Sheriff's Office said the man, 45-year-old Robert D. Cook, was arrested at 3:40 p.m. Jan. 4 without incident at a home on West Grove Road in the town of Troy. St. Croix County prosecutors charged Cook with two felonies — aggravated domestic battery and first-degree recklessly endangering safety — along with two misdemeanor offenses.
A North Carolina man was arrested over the Christmas holiday weekend after a woman reported being assaulted and robbed in Hudson. The suspect, identified as 29-year-old Kevin Bowser III, was arrested on suspicion of robbery, disorderly conduct and lewd and lascivious behavior. He was charged Dec. 27 in St. Croix County Circuit Court with lewd and lascivious conduct and disorderly conduct — both misdemeanors to which he pleaded not guilty. A second man sought in connection with the incident remained at large, Hudson Police Chief Marty Jensen said.
Two candidates for the 10th Senate District seat will appear next week in River Falls for a forum.
Authorities say a routine traffic stop led to the discovery of nearly 2 pounds of pot in St. Croix County. The incident occurred at about 6 p.m. Dec. 17 while a Roberts police officer was patrolling the area of Highway 12 and Briarwood Boulevard when, according to a criminal complaint, he spotted a suspected speeder.
TOWN OF ST. JOSEPH — Ron Burton blames his dad. The town of St. Joseph fire chief recalls how his father, an assistant fire chief running a truck out of Burkhardt, would take him along on fire calls decades ago. Burton remembers the allure of the siren wails and light flashes as they responded to calls. "It was a pretty cool thing for a little boy," he said. That early exposure was all it took to spawn his own firefighting career. "I don't know that I had much choice in the matter," he said with a chuckle.