Jason Schulte is a reporter for the New Richmond News since February 2015. Prior to that he spent eight years at the Pierce County Herald in Ellsworth. His duties with the News will include covering news out of Hammond and Roberts along with action from St. Croix County court system. He lives in Roberts.
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A Pierce County Board member was charged last month with possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Cullen T. Peterson, 25, River Falls, is alleged to have those two items while he was residing at South Fork Suites on the campus of UW-River Falls. His next court appearance is a motion hearing at 3 p.m. March 24. According to police reports, a UW-RF police officer were called to South Fork Suites Dec. 21 as the resident hall manager and resident assistant were doing room checks.
ELLSWORTH -- The Pierce County Board of Supervisors reached its first agreement with one of six labor unions Feb. 1. The board unanimously approved the collective bargaining agreement with the Labor Association of Wisconsin (L.A.W.) -- Community Health Association (CHA). The agreement begins Jan. 1 and expires Dec. 31, 2012. CHA is made up of 16 members and consists of public health personnel. "We truly felt negotiations took place," said CHA representative Dianne H-Robinson, who made up the negotiation team, along with Sara Sabelko and Michelle Williams.
A fight in the Pierce County Jail resulted in a River Falls man being charged with a felony. Gene C. Ewers, 40, was charged Thursday in Pierce County Circuit Court with battery by prisoners. He is scheduled to make his initial appearance Monday. According to the criminal complaint, a fellow inmate alleged on Jan. 21, Ewers pushed him into the shower door causing him to fall about five to six feet injuring his hand. The victim said the fight started when he asked Ewers and another inmate to quit being so loud and referencing a scene from a TV show.
ELLSWORTH -- As he begins his first full year on the bench, Pierce County Circuit Court Judge Joseph Boles offered his thoughts on the local judicial system to the County Board Feb. 1. "The transition from private practice to judge has been smooth," said Boles, a lawyer in River Falls before winning the election last April. "I feel very welcome here in the courthouse and throughout Ellsworth. "I feel very happy to have the job I have, which is serving the citizens of Pierce County." Boles talked about recent changes, both involving video conferencing.
An accomplice in the River Falls Econo Foods burglary last September pled guilty Tuesday to two counts of misdemeanor theft in Pierce County Circuit Court. Ashley M. Schuh, 21, Mondovi, pled guilty to the counts as part of an agreement. She was originally charged with four counts of credit card fraud, misdemeanor theft and two counts of burglary. According to the criminal complaint, Schuh caught the eye of law enforcement when she and Joleigha Johnson, 30, were found in a stalled vehicle on Interstate 94 in Eau Claire County the early morning hours of Sept. 20.
Expansion of departments in the Pierce County Courthouse will likely not happen in the foreseeable future for two reasons: Money, as evident by the budget cuts made last year, and space, as there is hardly any of that, either. That is the opinion of a recent building summary done by KKE Architects, the architectural firm specializing in interior design and architectural planning. The company, with locations in Minneapolis and throughout the United States, did an overview of the judicial portion of the courthouse.
The year is only 20 days old, but there have already been two notable animal cruelty cases in the county. On Saturday, Evelyn Halvorson of River Falls reported "Thunder", her 14-year-old Arabian gelding horse was shot and killed. According to the police report, Thunder was found next to six other horses enclosed in a pasture with woods and open land surrounding it. The Halvorsons, who live on County Highway W, believe the shooter was a coyote hunter as Thunder was shot right between the eyes with a rifle bullet. Thunder was a gelding raised from a colt, Halvorson explained.
A recent building summary of the Pierce County Courthouse has confirmed what those who work or visit have known all along: "Among many physical and operational problems with the facility, the most severe and immediate issues revolve around space needs, efficient operations, accessibility and security," representatives of KKE Architects said. The architectural firm, specializing in interior design and architectural planning, with locations in Minneapolis and throughout the United States, praised the complex for being attractive and well-maintained for being over 100 years old.
Mother Nature and the collapse of the U.S. economy forced Steve and Jennifer Koth out of their Ellsworth home. At the same time, the couple is determined not to join one of the nearly 150 homeowners in Pierce County foreclosed upon this year. "There are other options you can aggressively pursue," Steve Koth said. "You can stand up to these banks and fight them.
A Prescott man who allegedly struck a teenager several times in a dispute over the boy's housekeeping, faces a charge of felony child abuse. Mark H. Nelson, 53, 334 N. Dakota St., has been ordered to appear for a preliminary hearing at 10:30 a.m. Jan. 31. Prescott police were dispatched around 8 a.m. Dec. 21 for a possible domestic/battery to a child, according to the criminal complaint. Upon arrival, a 14-year-old alleged that earlier in the day, Nelson grabbed him by the back of the neck.