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It didn't take long to choose a jury in a sexual assault case involving a priest serving in the La Crosse Diocese...
Jury selection for the trial of Father Edmund Donkor-Baine lasted less than two hours. Those jurors will begin hearing testimony tomorrow, on charges that Donkor-Baine had sexual contact with a woman he was counseling in a divorce. The woman says she complained to police after church officials took no action against the priest, who's visiting from Ghana. She claims the incident happened in a parked car more than a year ago.
A sixth drunk driving arrest for a guy in La Crosse this week-end. Police say they stopped 40 year-old Craig Ross around midnight on Saturday heading north out of town. Ross told cops he was just heading home to Onalaska from a bar on the city's northside. He was driving a car without a rearview mirror, no seatbelt, no insurance. What he did have was a full belly of booze. Police say Ross nearly blew a .16 at the scene. Besides the sixth OWI, under a recently enacted Wisconsin law, they also cited him for failing to installl an ignition interlock device on the car he was driving.
The La Crosse ethics board is back at it today. The board meets for the second time to consider a complaint filed by a large group of people against mayor Matt Harter. The complaint roughly mirrors an outside legal opinion that found the mayor maybe overstepped ethical and legal boundaries in meetings at the county solid waste director's office. One of those meetings involved Harter's dad, the city's garbage and recycling contractor. The ethics board today is expected to select outside legal counsel.
You have to have standards. And La Crosse police will hold you to them if you apply for a bartender's license in the city. After a review of the 18 license applications denied by the police in the last year, we find that police follow a pattern of denials: Excessive problems with the law, drug and alcohol convictions, or just unpaid parking tickets. The 18 denials were among 500 or so bartender license applications total over the last year. Not a big number, says La Crosse tavern league president Mike Brown, and he doesn't think the process for getting a license is overly burdensome. Although Brown does have some light criticism for denials based on unpaid parking tickets. Brown also says, though you don't have to have an operator's license to tend bar in the city, members of the Tavern League typically require their bartenders to get the license.
A judge in Prairie du Chien could decide this afternoon whether Michael Burroughs will be tried for a murder he already confessed to committing.
Burroughs has an evidence hearing in Crawford County court...a standard procedure, leading up to a possible negotiated plea. The Iowa man went to police in Prairie earlier this month, and told them he strangled Shannon Fischer in his apartment in 2006, putting her body in the garbage days later. Area police had spent years searching for Fischer as a missing person.