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FBI agents raid La Crosse house, arrest one man

1 person arrested in connection to case

LA CROSSE, Wis. - An early-morning FBI raid of a home on La Crosse's south side leads to a man's arrest.

The house is at 4330 Verchota St., which is near the former Hillview Golf Course.

Neighbor Tom Kromke woke up at 6:00 a.m. to loud banging noises.

"My wife was guessing it was the backfiring of a car. And I said, ‘Well, to me it sounded like gunshots,'" said Kromke.

His neighbor, Becky Post, and her husband heard it, too. They looked out the window and saw cars swarming the house across the street.


"And I said to him, maybe you should call the police. So he did. And they informed him that there was an FBI sting operation going on over there and that what he had heard were flash grenades, something that will startle a person so they can get him before he has time to think," said Post.

FBI agents from the Milwaukee field office raided the house for a case the Chicago FBI has been working on.

The man who rented the house was arrested and transported to Chicago.

Neighbors said before now, they've never noticed anything suspicious about him.

"It's just been a real quiet neighborhood. I've never noticed anything going on in that house. Like I said, the person that lives there, I think we've saw him maybe twice. So it was sort of a surprise seeing all the action going on over here this morning," said Kromke.

It was action that frightened Post at first, but now she feels reassured the problem has been taken care of.

"Well, I'm just glad that people were on the ball. Law enforcement, they evidently tracked this guy down and did what they needed to do. And I feel really happy about that. He's not in our neighborhood anymore," said Post.

Law enforcement is keeping very tight-lipped for now about what the raid was all about, but La Crosse police detectives with the department's drug unit were on the scene Thursday morning.

The owner of the house was also on the scene, but he said law enforcement has instructed him not to comment while the investigation continues.

Law enforcement took a black SUV out of the garage this morning, which neighbors said belonged to the man who lived there. Neighborhood watch president Bud Miyamoto said he saw a K-9 sniffing the car.

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