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Capsized boat completes crossing of Lake Michigan PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Wednesday, 12 July 2017 18:06

Vessel abandoned after men were rescued off Port found 80 miles away

    When the Port Washington fire department rescued three men from a capsized 17-foot fishing boat June 18, officials believed the vessel would sink a little more than two miles off the city’s shore.
    That didn’t happen. The boat was recovered by the Coast Guard near Big Sable Point lighthouse just north of Ludington, Mich., on June 30.
    A “good Samaritan” reported the boat floating upside down, said Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class Frank Carpenter, who is assigned to the Coast Guard station at Manistee, Mich.
    The Coast Guard towed the boat to the Manistee station, flipped it and dewatered it. Officials then contacted the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to determine the owner via the boat’s registration number, Carpenter said.
    The owner was notified that his boat had been recovered, and he picked it up the following day, he said.
    “He seemed pretty happy,” Carpenter said.
    The story started about 8:30 a.m. Sunday, June 18, when the fishing boat began taking on water over the sides while three men were fishing in choppy waters. The men used a waterproof iPhone 7 to call for help.
    When the Port fire department’s rescue boat arrived at the scene, it found the men atop the overturned boat. The men were brought on board, then transferred to the Ozaukee County rescue boat, which brought them to shore.
    Port Fire Chief Mark Mitchell said a Coast Guard helicopter responded to the scene and saw the boat was under the surface of the water.
    “They didn’t make any attempt to recover it,” he said.  
    In case you’re wondering, the vessel traveled 70 nautical miles — the equivalent of 80.5 highway miles — across Lake Michigan from Port to a point that’s roughly east of Manitowoc.
    It was a remarkable trip, Mitchell said, given that the boat traveled across a lake without bumping into the many freighters and pleasure craft that ply the water.
    The overturned boat apparently avoided them on its travels because it was in pretty good shape when it was recovered, Carpenter said.
    He noted that the vessel was designed to be inherently buoyant.
    “You could technically fill it up with water and it would still float,” Carpenter said.
    Still, he didn’t lose perspective on the case.
    “The boat floated across the lake, and that’s a good thing, but the most important thing is that the people who were in it were saved,” Carpenter said. “I think that’s the biggest point to make.”Daily Press

Marina Day to be celebrated on July 8 PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by Ozaukee Press   
Wednesday, 05 July 2017 19:02

National Marina Day will be celebrated in Port Washington from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, July 8.
    The marina staff will serve free hot dogs, chips and soda throughout the event.
    At 1 p.m., the Ozaukee High School robotics team — the top-rated team in the state and third ranked in the nation — will demonstrate its remotely operated underwater vehicle, a tethered ROV that completes simulated industrial and scientific tasks that are not safe for divers to undertake.Daily Press

Landscaper scam, forgery lands Port man in prison PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by BILL SCHANEN IV   
Wednesday, 05 July 2017 19:00

Judge revokes his probation, sentences him to two years behind bars

    A Port Washington man whose troubles with the law began in 2015 when he passed himself off as an employee of a landscaping firm he didn’t work for and accepted money for work he never did was sentenced to prison last month for that crime and forging checks earlier this year.
    Andrew J. Gronowski, 39, was sentenced on June 20 by Ozaukee County Circuit Judge Paul Malloy to two years in prison and two years of extended supervision after pleading guilty to forging a check in January or February.
    At the time of the forgery, Gronowski was on probation for the landscaping scam. His probation was revoked on June 20 and he was sentenced to two years in prison and two years of extended supervision, although the two sentences are to be served concurrently.
    According to the criminal complaint in the forgery case, on Feb. 8, a man told a Port Washington police officer that he had power of attorney to manage the finances of his brother, who had been in the county jail since Jan. 8.
    The man said he noticed that nine of his brother’s checks had been paid to the order of Gronowski for cash since his brother had been incarcerated. The checks totalled $4,250.
    The man said his brother’s girlfriend, Deborah Paulin, had permission to use his brother’s debit card for some purchases but not his checkbook. He said that since his brother was incarcerated, Gronowski had been providing “moral support” to Paulin, according to the complaint.
    When officers interviewed Paulin, she denied writing any of the checks and said she believed Gronowski stole the checkbook.
    But when officers went back to Paulin’s home a few days later, they found Gronowski hiding in a closet. Gronowski admitted to cashing the checks and said he had written all but one of them. That one, he said, was written by Paulin to him for $200.
    Paulin, who eventually admitted writing one of the checks, pleaded no contest in April to one felony count of forgery and obstructing an officer, a misdemeanor.
    Malloy sentenced Paulin to one year in jail, but stayed that sentence and placed her on probation for three years. As a condition of probation, Paulin was ordered to serve 60 days in jail.    
    Gronowski’s earlier crime dated to September 2015 when, after noticing trees that needed to be cut down in a yard on Harrison Street in Port Washington, he approached the homeowner, told him he was from a local landscaping company and took a $200 deposit for work to be done later. Gronowski told the man he would put a contract in his mailbox the next day.
    When the contract wasn’t delivered, the man called the landscaping company. A representative of the company told him that Gronowski did not work for the firm and had been swindling people by claiming that he was employed by the landscaper.
    In February 2016, Gronowski pleaded guilty to one felony count of identity theft. Malloy initially withheld a prison sentence, placed him on probation for three years and ordered him to serve six months in the county jail. Gronowski was then sentenced to prison last month after violating the terms of his probation.Daily Press

Rash of burglaries has authorities seeking clues PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by JOE POIRIER   
Wednesday, 05 July 2017 18:58

Sheriff’s Office is investigating series of break-ins, thefts from businesses, construction sites in Town of Grafton

    The Ozaukee County Sheriff’s Department is investigating a series of burglaries of businesses and construction sites along I-43 in the Town of Grafton.
    More than several thousand dollars worth of tools and scrap metal are missing from thefts occurring over the past several weeks, according to Lt. Marshall Hermann.  
    The Sheriff’s Department received its first report on June 14, when a residential home under construction on the 600 block of Lakefield Road was broken into sometime between 6 p.m. June 13 and 6 a.m. June 14. Several items, including tools, construction materials and copper wire were taken.
    Around the same date and time the Sheriff’s Department received a report of forceful entry and stolen tools and equipment from a locked enclosed trailer parked at a residential construction site on the 700 block of Lakefield Road.
    On Friday, June 30, Fire Ridge Golf Course, 2297 Hwy. W, reported that its maintenance shop was forcefully entered and tools and equipment were removed. The incident is said to have occurred between 2:45 p.m. Thursday, June 29, and 5 a.m. the next day.
    On Monday, July 3, burglaries of two commercial buildings and thefts from four enclosed trailers at the businesses of Paul Crandall & Associates, located at 1645 N. Port Washington Rd., and Chenery Brothers, 1655 N. Port Washington Rd., were reported.
    Tools and construction equipment were removed from the buildings and trailers between noon on Saturday, July 1 and 6 a.m. Monday.
    Hermann said all the incidents appear to be similar, based on the location of targeted areas and similarity in the items taken – tools and construction equipment.
    “We’ve reached out to other agencies in Milwaukee to see if they had any similar and consistent incidents,” Hermann said. “We have no solid leads and are asking the public to keep an eye out for suspicious behavior, especially after business hours, and to report any information regarding these incidents.”
    The Sheriff’s Department asks anyone with information on the crimes to call (262) 284-7172 or text “OZSO + your tip” anonymously to 847411.Ozaukee Press Logo RED

Man gets 3 years prison for driving drunk again PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Written by BILL SCHANEN IV   
Wednesday, 28 June 2017 20:29

    A 55-year-old Town of Port Washington man with a history of aggravated drunken driving convictions was sentenced last week to three years in prison for driving while intoxicated on New Year’s Day.
    Dean A. Rauch was also sentenced by Ozaukee County Circuit Judge Sandy Williams to two years of extended supervision and six months in jail after pleading guilty to one felony count of fourth-offense drunken driving and misdemeanor counts of driving after his license had been revoked and failing to install an ignition interlock device on his vehicle.
    Rauch was arrested at about 3 p.m. Jan. 1 after a police officer saw him pull out of the Sai Mart gas station and convenience store at the corner of Wisconsin Street and Highway LL in Port Washington and into an oncoming lane of traffic.
    According to the criminal complaint, the officer said he could smell alcohol on Rauch’s breath. A preliminary breath test showed Rauch’s blood alcohol level exceeded the legal limit.
    Rauch’s drunken driving record dates to 1991, when he was convicted in Milwaukee County of causing injury and negligent homicide by intoxicated driving, the criminal complaint states. He was also convicted of drunken driving in 2007.
    On Feb. 19, 2014, Rauch was arrested in Saukville after police officers received a report of a man who appeared to be drunk getting into a minivan with a child in it and driving away.
    Officers who pulled Rauch over on Green Bay Avenue noticed a child who was about 4 years old in the front seat without a seat belt or a car seat. When asked why the child was not properly restrained, Rauch, who smelled of alcohol, said, “That’s a good question,” according to the criminal complaint.
    Four months later, Rauch pleaded guilty  to one felony count of third-offense drunken driving with a child in the vehicle. He was sentenced by Ozaukee County Circuit Judge Joseph Voiland to 18 months in prison and six months of extended supervision.
    Voiland also revoked his license for four years and ordered him have an ignition interlock device on his vehicle for four years.
   Daily Press

City gives Brewpub in Legion hall the green light PDF Print E-mail
Daily News
Wednesday, 28 June 2017 20:26

Port council approves permit that will allow brewery, restaurant to operate beer garden near lakefront

    Inventors Brewpub, which will operate the bar and restaurant at the Van Ells-Schanen American Legion Post Hall in Port Washington beginning next month, received a conditional use permit from the Common Council last week that will allow it to create a beer garden in front of the building.
    Brewpub owner Adam Draeger said the beer garden will complement the hall, which he described as “a really great historic building.”
    He said he plans to plant hops along one wall of the building, install picnic tables and a rope-like fence along the east and north sides and a planting bed at the base of the hillside in front of the hall.
    Draeger said he plans to have the beer garden open from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Wednesdays through Sundays, with an 11 p.m. closing on weekends.
    Depending on how things go this year, Draeger added, he could open it daily next summer.  
    “This is just a regular restaurant and bar right now,” he said. But once he gets his brewing license in seven to eight months, he will convert the facility to a brewpub.
    Draeger said he plans to open a one-barrel operation initially and work his way up to a seven-barrel operation.
    Several residents of the Lighthouse Condominiums at 415 N. Lake St., next door to the Legion Hall, questioned aspects of the conditional use permit.
    Greg Loebbaka questioned whether there would be outdoor entertainment, saying he wanted to be sure neighbors would not be “hearing loud music at 2 a.m.”
    City Administrator Mark Grams said Draeger had not applied for a cabaret license, which is needed before live entertainment can be featured.
    Draeger noted he will have a jukebox inside the hall, adding that since closing will be 11 p.m. on weekends “there’s no fear of a 2 a.m. raucous party going on.”
    Karen Oleski said she is concerned about traffic, especially with children running across Lake Street from Veterans Park to the beer garden, where their parents may be enjoying a brew.
    “It’s pretty difficult at times now to see cars coming down from Upper Lake Park,” she said, adding the city may need to consider traffic control measures, such as reducing the speed limit or signs, when the beer garden is operating.
    City Attorney Eric Eberhardt suggested that the city require a fence around the entire beer garden, but Grams disagreed, saying the terrain and landscaping bed at the foot of the hill provide enough separation to prevent people from coming and going with alcohol or handing drinks off to underage people.
    The council also agreed Tuesday to a licensing agreement that will allow the pub to install a sign on a small grassy city-owned parcel next to the Legion hall.
    The sign is a silo that stands 12 feet tall and is 5-1/2-feet in diameter.
    “It’s a real silo,” Draeger said. “I’m just treating it as a sign.”Ozaukee Press Logo RED

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