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Mon
12
Sep

Inmate on Huber release does not return

An inmate on Huber release was arrested and returned to the Crawford County Jail Sunday, Sept. 11, after he was on the loose for more than 36 hours, according to the Crawford County Sheriff’s Department.

Trent Gilbertson was released from the jail on Friday, Sept. 9, at 6:28 a.m., for Huber work release, as he was doing construction in the Prairie du Chien area. As of Saturday, Sept. 10, at 7 a.m., he had not returned. He was being held on a warrant for failure to support child.

The Prairie du Chien Police Department and surrounding counties were notified that Gilbertson had not returned as scheduled.

Finally, at 6:45 p.m., Sunday, Gilbertson was arrested after the sheriff’s department received a tip that he was staying at a residence in Prairie du Chien. Prairie du Chien police responded and arrested Gilbertson, who was intoxicated.

Mon
12
Sep

No one injured, no citations in railway maintenance car versus semi crash


A Moore’s Trucking semi trailer was lifted slightly due to the impact and weight behind the railroad tamper car that collided with it last Wednesday at Frederick Street in Prairie du Chien. (Photo by Gary Howe)

By Correne Martin

A railway maintenance car crashed into a semi at the East Frederick Street railroad crossing in Prairie du Chien last Wednesday morning, Sept. 7, according to the Prairie du Chien Police Department. The semi was lifted slightly due to the impact and weight behind the tamper car when they collided, though no one was injured in the accident. No citations were written by law enforcement.

The crash occured about 10:45 a.m., when Zachary Berman, 29, of Spokane, Wash., was operating a Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway tamper and heading east on the tracks as part of a regularly scheduled BNSF maintenance crew. As a result of the morning rain, the wet track became a factor in Berman’s attempt to slow down and stop the equipment, according to the accident report. He was unable to stop before colliding with a 2003 International semi, owned by Moore’s Trucking and operated by Lesley Lathrop, 56, of Gays Mills.

Mon
12
Sep

Family hosts fundraisers in anticipation of Prairie du Chien PD’s K-9 dog


Pictured (from left) are Linda Farmer, Police Chief Chad Abram, future K-9 Handler Casey Cox, Tracy Fernette, Breia Farmer, Terrilyn Farmer, Stacy Hendrix and Piggly Wiggly Owner Curt Zinkle. (Photo by Correne Martin)

By Correne Martin

The Farmer family, including four sisters and their mom from Prairie du Chien, took fundraising for the anticipated PdC Police Department K-9 unit to a whole new level this summer, and they engaged the public in supporting their fundraising efforts along the way.

First, they hosted three days of concessions in May, June and July at Nelson True Value, which donated the space and propane to cook the food sold. Second, they got Zinkle’s Piggly Wiggly on board with sponsoring public donation containers, paws on the wall and employee jeans day. The Zinkle family contributed monetarily, while their company members and customers were generous in their donations as well. Third, in August, they organized a volleyball tournament, from which the top two winners, the Pustinas and the Butterburgers, gave their prize money back to the effort.

In total, $2,090.79 was raised for the police department to use in adding the K-9 unit.

Mon
12
Sep

Centuries-old painting of second Ft. Crawford bought from private owner


The Prairie du Chien Historical Society purchased this 1842 oil painting (artist unknown) of the second Fort Crawford from a private owner, with donations given in memory of Eric Temte and Fred Huebsch. It is going to be conserved and put on permanent display at the Fort Crawford Museum. The boat in the foreground contains Surgeon Charles McDougall and his orderly on a hunting trip.

By Correne Martin

How would an 1842 oil painting of the second Fort Crawford in Prairie du Chien end up in California? The historians at the Fort Crawford Museum would like to know, since the Prairie du Chien Historical Society recently purchased the painting from a private owner, who acquired it himself over 25 years ago.

“He contacted us and wanted to sell it,” said Mary Antoine, PdCHS president. “He had purchased it from an antique dealer from California.” But, how the painting got to California in the first place remains uncertain. The name of the artist who created the piece is also unknown.

On the contrary, the historical society is knowledgable about the history of what the painting depicts. A hand-written label adhered to the back of the canvas states:

Mon
12
Sep

SMRT Bus Growth


SMRT Bus ridership has grown significantly since it began.

 

SMRT Bus ridership 

shows continued growth

By Ted Pennekamp

 

The Scenic Mississippi River Transit Bus Service (SMRT Bus), which began operation on Dec. 3, 2012, continues to show good growth over its first few years. SMRT Bus is a commuter bus system for Crawford, Vernon and La Crosse counties. The bus service runs Monday through Friday. 

Wed
07
Sep

Second middle-income apartment complex proposed to Prairie du Chien Common Council

Developer Luke Pelton, of 22nd Street LLC, approached the city late in 2015 about the feasibility of constructing a new apartment complex on the land owned by the city adjacent to Woodridge Acres and Universal Forest Products.

Pelton has since drafted a pro forma financial plan to build three, 16-unit apartment buildings, which he would like operational by Jan. 1, 2018. The complex would include a mix of one- and two-bedroom units, each with its own garage, and they would be market-rate apartments on an average rental of $650, with no subsidized tenants. If market conditions warranted, Pelton has indicated a desire to construct up to as many as 96 units.

Wed
07
Sep

Brothers’ memorial playground in need of funds for rebuild


Austin and Justin Nolan died in a tragic ATV accident near their home in rural Prairie du Chien in August 2005.

The playground is pictured in its previous location, before it was taken down in April 2015 to make way for necessary additions to Prairie Catholic Schools

A beautiful picture of the playground equipment, with St. Gabriel's Catholic Church in the background.

By Correne Martin

A memorial playground honoring two brothers, who died in an ATV accident in 2005, has befittingly brought joy to hundreds of kids for the better part of a decade. So, when the Austin and Justin Nolan Memorial Playground was taken down from the Prairie Catholic School grounds in April 2015, to make way for a new gymnasium, it was difficult for parents Carrie and John Nolan to see happen. Thankfully, the deconstruction was not permanent.

The Nolans were assured by the school and parish administration that the play equipment would be rebuilt elsewhere on the grounds. The way Carrie understood it, at the time, was that it would be erected once again by means of a community build—just as it happened over the course of two days in July 2006. However, a month and a half ago, Carrie learned otherwise.

Wed
07
Sep

Few comments about COTR move are split in opinion

By Correne Martin

The public was given its time to share comments with the Prairie du Chien Common Council, regarding support or opposition to the relocation of Country on the River, from Bridgeport to St. Feriole Island. However, those representing the public and vocalizing their opinions, at the council meeting Tuesday night, included only a small percentage of community stakeholders.

Two spoke in person and five more provided emails and letters, which were read into the record at the meeting. A half-dozen others attended the meeting but did not comment. The council only listened to the viewpoints, as it will make a decision on the matter at its Sept. 20 meeting.

Wed
07
Sep

People in crash injured, lie about man with a gun

On Sunday, Aug. 28 at 6:21 a.m., the Grant County Sheriff’s Office took a report from Crawford County dispatch of a number of individuals receiving care at Crossing Rivers Health in Prairie du Chien.  

It was initially reported that three subjects received a ride from a bar in Platteville, as the driver lost his keys to his vehicle. The men said the unknown driver took a person to Prairie du Chien, dropped that person off and then started taking them back to Avoca. During the trip to Avoca, the driver showed the trio a gun and told them to get out of the vehicle. They said they all jumped from the vehicle as it was moving.  

Wed
07
Sep

Man charged with his seventh OWI

A 58-year-old Soldiers Grove man was charged Sept. 1 in Crawford County Circuit Court with one count of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated (seventh offense).

Thomas E. Finley faces up to 10 years in prison and $25,000 in fines if convicted.

According to the criminal complaint, Finley was pulled over by a Crawford County Sheriff’s Deputy in the village of Soldiers Grove at 11:40 p.m. on Aug. 22, on suspicion of OWI.

Finley was arrested and taken to Crossing Rivers Hospital in Prairie du Chien. Finley had six prior convictions for OWI and therefore his blood alcohol content was restricted to .02 in order to legally drive.

Finley refused to submit to a chemical test of his blood, so a search warrant was obtained and Finley’s blood was drawn. Samples were labeled, sealed and sent to the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene in Madison.

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