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Wisconsin COVID patients packing hospitals, no omicron yet

Patients with COVID-19, most of them unvaccinated, are packing Wisconsin hospitals at levels not seen for a year, a worrying development even before the new omicron variant has been detected in the state. Amid concerns about the new and little-understood omicron variant, Wisconsin health officials on Thursday urged people to get vaccinated and take other steps to slow the spread. The latest date from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services shows people who are not vaccinated are nearly 11 times more likely to be hospitalized and 15 times more likely to die than those who are vaccinated.

EXPLAINER: Was officer's fatal Taser mix-up manslaughter?

Prosecutors will try to prove that a white suburban Minneapolis police officer, Kim Potter, committed manslaughter when she fatally shot Daunte Wright, a Black man, during an attempted arrest in April. Potter, who resigned two days after the shooting, says she meant to use her Taser but accidentally grabbed her gun instead when she killed the 20-year-old Black man in the Minneapolis suburb of Brooklyn Center. Potter is charged with first- and second-degree manslaughter. The more serious charge requires prosecutors to prove that she acted recklessly, while the lesser charge requires them to establish that she acted with culpable negligence. Jury selection begins Tuesday. 

Children's Wisconsin treating 7 victims from parade crash

Children’s Wisconsin said seven patients injured in last weekend’s Christmas parade crash in suburban Milwaukee are still being treated at the hospital. The facility originally received 16 patients after the driver of a red SUV roared through the parade in Waukesha, killing six people and injuring more than 60. One Children's Wisconsin patient was released on Sunday, another on Friday and another was able to come home for Thanksgiving. Out of the seven remaining patients, four are in serious condition, two are in fair condition and one is in good condition. Darnell Brooks Jr. is accused of speeding away from police and entering the parade, refusing to stop even as an officer banged on the hood of his SUV. Five adults and one child were killed in the crash. 

Police: `Some fatalities' when SUV hits Christmas parade

The police chief in Waukesha, Wisconsin, says there were “some fatalities” when an SUV sped into Christmas parade. Chief Dan Thompson said more than 20 people were injured Sunday. Thompson said he doesn’t have an exact number of fatalities. He said a “person of interest” is in custody. A live video feed of the parade from the city of Waukesha, as well as videos taken by parade attendees, showed a red SUV breaking through barriers and speeding into the roadway where the parade was taking place.

SUV plows into Wisconsin Christmas parade; multiple injuries

The mayor of Waukesha, Wisconsin, has confirmed that multiple people were injured when an SUV sped into a Christmas parade in suburban Milwaukee. Mayor Shawn Reilly tells WITI in Milwaukee that he does not believe there is any current danger to the public. Police in Waukesha were urging people to avoid the downtown area. A live video feed of the parade from the city of Waukesha showed a red SUV breaking through barriers and speeding into the roadway where the parade was taking place. It’s unclear how many people are injured. Police said they could not immediately provide details.

‘Shot across the bow’: Virginia results forecast tough road for Gov. Evers next fall

MADISON, Wis. — A historic Republican gubernatorial win in Virginia on Tuesday could forecast a tough election for Wisconsin’s governor next fall. It’s clearly “a shot across the bow,” former longtime Wisconsin Republican strategist Brandon Scholz said. Virginia’s gubernatorial history since the early 2000s trends deeper blue then Wisconsin’s own. Four out of their last five governors dating back to…

Wisconsin inmates’ mail will soon be photocopied to stop drugs being sent to corrections facilities

iStock/allanswartMADISON, Wis. — All adult inmates in Wisconsin correctional facilities will have their personal mail photocopied and delivered on fresh paper in an effort to reduce the prevalence of hard-to-detect drugs being sent to them, the state’s Department of Corrections announced Wednesday. Citing an increase in the number of drug incidents among people in its care, the department said it…

Multiple students burned after firework explodes on Fitchburg bus

FITCHBURG, Wis. — A 15-year-old is in police custody after igniting a firework on a bus Friday, burning multiple students. Fitchburg Police say the teen, who was riding a Badger School Bus to Verona High School, ignited a firework that exploded in the bus aisle. The bus driver initially believed shots had been fired and stopped the bus. At least…