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Wisconsin roundup: Groundbreaking state Supreme Court justice won’t seek re-election; more state news stories

Eighty-four-year-old Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Shirley Abrahamson says she has decided not to seek re-election.

Abrahamson has been sick recently and has participated in cases by phone for the last few months. She became the first woman on the state's high court 42 years ago and she says she intends to serve through the end of July 2019. The election to replace her will be held next April. She had served as chief justice for nearly 19 years and has written more than 450 majority opinions.


DOT: Deer activity on Wis. roads spikes in June

The Wisconsin Department of Transportation says motor vehicle operators should be on the lookout for increased deer activity on the roads throughout the month of June.

DOT officials say the month of June has the highest rate of motorists injured in deer-related crashes. During this time young deer separate from their mothers, while does look for places to give birth, resulting in an overall increase in activity.

Deer are active at all times of the day, but appear most often in the early-morning and evening. Officials say there were more than 20,000 deer-related crashes reported in Wisconsin in 2016.


Proposal would reduce Wis. cranberry sales

A proposed federal marketing order may force Wisconsin cranberry growers to reduce their sales.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture order would limit the nation's cranberry crop to 75 percent of its normal size. The move would reduce supplies and increase prices. Public comment being taken on the order ended Tuesday.


Trump signs Johnson’s ‘Right to Try’ medication bill

The president signed U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson's "Right to Try" bill into law at a Wednesday White House ceremony.

The legislation would clear the way for people with deadly diseases to try experimental treatments before they are approved by the Food and Drug Administration. The bill authored by the Wisconsin Republican gives patients access to medications which have passed "Phase 1" approval from the FDA. The president says this is a "fundamental freedom" which will provide hope and save lives.


Woman accused of starving son, 5, headed to jail

A Wrightstown woman has been sentenced to nine months in jail for starving and mentally abusing her adopted 5-year-old son.

The Brown County Circuit Court judge also ordered a psychological evaluation for Kimberly Fahrenburg. One doctor at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin called the case "the most egregious example of child starvation and torture" she has seen, comparing it to children in World War II concentration camps. The boy weighed just 29 pounds when Fahrenburg and her husband took him to the hospital last year. Hospital officials say she tried to limit his food while he was being treated there as well.


Bon-Ton bankruptcy will be costly for Wis. small business owners

Small business owners in Wisconsin are expressing very little bitterness, even though the bankruptcy of Bon-Ton Stores, Inc., will cost them money.

Artisans, retailers and crafters in this state are owed $717,000 and they don't expect to recover very much of that — maybe none. Twenty claims were filed with the bankruptcy court by smaller companies which make products like maple syrup, jewelry, soap, candles, and religious children's books. The vendors say they are simply grateful the retailer reached out to them and made a place on its shelves for their products. They do still want to be compensated.


Wis.-based Lands’ End makes new Delta Airlines uniforms

For the first time in more than 30 years, workers at Delta Airlines are wearing new uniforms.

Dodgeville-based Lands' End is the supplier for the airline's 64,000 workers. The traditional navy-and-red uniforms worn by flight attendants and ticket agents have been replaced by a color Delta calls "Passport Plum," but it looks purple. The project which started two years ago is the largest ever tackled by Lands' End and the company hasn't disclosed the financial value of the deal. The Wisconsin apparel company just won a contract this year to supply uniforms for the 51,000 American Airlines employees.


5 defendants plead not guilty to murder conspiracy charges

Five northern Wisconsin men entered not guilty pleas to charges they conspired to kill a man.

Twenty-six-year-old Curtis Wolfe, 28-year-old Evan Oungst, 19-year-old James Lussier, 26-year-old Joseph Lussier and 27-year-old Richard Allen made Iron County Circuit Court appearances Wednesday. They are accused of participating in the fatal shooting of 25-year-old Wayne Valliere Jr. of Lac du Flambeau. Valliere was shot eight times, including two shots to the head. He may have been killed during an argument over a stolen meth pipe and a suspicion by the others that he was a police informant.