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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A heightened police presence will be at schools in Hudson after a threat was investigated late Tuesday. Hudson Police Chief Marty Jensen said a threat reported at Hudson Middle School led to an officer visiting a student's home, where he conducted interviews and searched for weapons. Jensen said none were found. The student allegedly made reference to "shooting up the school," Jensen said. "We don't believe there was any credible threat," the chief said Wednesday morning. "But in this day and age, you've got to make sure you take all the necessary precautions."
HUDSON — A Somerset man allegedly told investigators he'd saved "a lot" of child porn to his computer. Authorities last week put a number to that estimate — about 10,000 files. That revelation came Friday, March 2, during the initial appearance for Richard J. Caldwell, who faces 10 counts of child porn possession. Law enforcement officials in the courtroom said the number of files drew gasps from fellow jail inmates during the hearing, which was conducted through videoconferencing between the courtroom and a jail conference room.
A western Wisconsin lawmaker cried foul last week after authorities determined a Houlton man's social media post wasn't the threat he believed it to be. Rep. Adam Jarchow took to Twitter to voice his disgust with Wisconsin State Capitol Police after authorities there opted not to press charges. The flap stemmed from a Facebook post by Garry Fay, who took umbrage with a post of Jarchow posing with his AR-15 rifle shortly after the Florida school massacre.
A La Crosse man picked up his third active fleeing police charge last week after a traffic incident beginning at the High Bridge connecting Pierce and Goodhue counties. Pierce County prosecutors charged 22-year-old Dean J. Mickelson with two felonies — attempting to flee an officer, meth possession — and three misdemeanors stemming from the March 5 incident. He was released on a $20,000 signature bond after a March 6 hearing before Pierce County Circuit Court Judge Joe Boles.
St. Croix County authorities said a potentially dangerous situation was averted after the makings for a suspected pipe bomb were discovered in a Somerset man's apartment. Sheriff Scott Knudson said the items were found Friday morning in a unit at the EZ Living Apartments complex on Main Street. A 30-year-old resident, David Lee Johnson, was arrested and later charged with felony possession of improvised explosives, along with two marijuana-related misdemeanors. St. Croix County Circuit Court Judge Eric Lundell held Johnson on a $25,000 cash bond.
St. Croix County authorities said a potentially dangerous situation was discovered at a Somerset apartment where a man was later arrested. Sheriff Scott Knudson said “suspected bomb material” was found Friday morning in a unit at the EZ Living Apartments complex on Main Street.
HUDSON — Wisconsin's top tax official cautioned residents here not to expect imminent change to a longstanding impasse with Minnesota. The two states have been at loggerheads over tax reciprocity for years and Wisconsin Revenue Secretary Richard Chandler said Wisconsin has done virtually everything it can do to restore the agreement that ended in January 2010. "We just see things differently," he said Feb. 27 during a public meeting organized by Rep. Shannon Zimmerman at the UW-River Falls Hudson Center.
A deputy on patrol at 1:06 a.m. March 5 attempted a traffic stop at Highway 63 and 825th Street in Hager City after learning the driver's status was suspended. The vehicle led deputies on a pursuit before eventually coming to a stop. The driver, a 22-year-old La Crosse man, was arrested at gunpoint. He was jailed on suspicion of knowingly fleeing an officer, contempt of court, operating after revocation, misdemeanor bail jumping and felony bail jumping. Dog owner cited after fifth complaint
A woman was rescued from icy waters Thursday after falling into Lake George in River Falls. Firefighters on scene said the woman, whose identity wasn’t immediately available, was attempting to save a dog that had fallen through the ice. The woman was seen being pulled to shore by firefighters before raising herself up on the riverbanks under her own power; she was immediately loaded into an ambulance.
A Florida man living in Somerset shot up vehicles and a house last month, according to documents filed last week in St. Croix County Circuit Court. St. Croix County prosecutors allege James M. Hendershot was responsible for damage inflicted during a drive-by shooting along Abby Lane in Somerset. The 30-year-old, who told police he moved from Florida to Somerset, was charged with three counts of felony discharging a firearm from a vehicle and multiple misdemeanors stemming from the Feb. 4 incident. Misdemeanor charges include contributing to the delinquency of a child.