On June 5, 2014 at approximately 5:15 p.m. officers responded to traffic complaint of vehicle driving erratically on Hwy 27 north of the City. The caller described the vehicle and stated it was crossing the center line as it traveled south. An officer located the vehicle on Black River St near Wisconsin St and noted the vehicle was weaving and crossing the traffic lane. The vehicle was stopped and driver identified as Crystal Lewandowski, from Cochrane. In talking with Lewandowski the officer noted several signs of impairment and had her perform several field sobriety tests. The officer determined Lewandowski was too impaired to be driving and arrested her for OMVWI. Lewandowski later submitted to chemical testing which indicated a .14 alcohol content. In addition to OMVWI, Lewandowski was cited for Operating with a Prohibited Alcohol Content and Unsafe Lane Deviation.
On June 8, 2014 at approximately 11:20 p.m. officers responded to the report of disabled vehicle on Black River Street near Maple Ave. The vehicle became disabled after the driver struck the curb and when the tow truck driver arrived he believed the person “shouldn’t be driving” and notified police. The investigating officer spoke with Joel Mueller, 74 from Sparta, who admitted to driving and striking the curb. Mueller stated he had “a lot” to drink and showed other signs of impairment. Mueller was eventually arrested for OMVWI, but refused chemical testing. A preliminary breath test indicated an alcohol level over twice the legal limit. In addition to the OMVWI arrest, Mueller was cited for Open Intoxicants in a Motor Vehicle and Unsafe Lane Deviation.
On June 13, 2014 at approximately 4:00 p.m. an employee of Monroe County Justice Sanctions reported that Dustin Beckjorden, 37 from Camp Douglas, was at their office and was wanted on a warrant. Officers confirmed that a warrant had been issued earlier in the day for Beckjorden after he failed to comply with rules of the OWI 4th program. He was taken into custody without further incident.
On June 14, 2014 at approximately 1 a.m., Sparta officers were assigned to a subject with a warrant that was in the Jail parking lot, 210 W. Oak St. Dispatch informed officers that Richard Lobe, 32 of Tomah, was sitting in a green car in front of the Jail. Once officers arrived, they did see a subject that matched Lobe's description get out of a green car and then took off running away from officers. Lobe was eventually caught on Court Street. Lobe was arrested for Resisting an Officer, a Monroe County Warrant and Bail Jumping X4. He was taken to the Monroe County Jail without further incident.
On June 15, 2014 at approximately 7:30 p.m., Officers responded to a disturbance at 910 Saint Anne St. A male subject called and advised that Michael Thorpe, 51 of Sparta, was in the residence, intoxicated, and was a threat to others. While officers were on scene talking with Thorpe about what lead to the phone call to dispatch, he refused to provide any information and was speaking with slurred speech. Dispatch then advised officers that Thorpe was on bond conditions that included not to consume alcohol. Thorpe was given a PBT which returned a reading of .21. Thorpe was arrested for Bail Jumping and taken to the Monroe County Jail without incident.
On June 10, 2014 at approximately 6:20 p.m. an Elm Street resident reported that her 8 year old son had been bitten by dog while biking in the 700 block of Lee Court. The child had been riding a bicycle with a grandparent when a dog started barking at him and then bit him as he turned around to leave. The dog’s owner was identified as William Ziegelmeier, 51 from Sparta, who claimed the dog had been outside with him and only jumped on the child. The dog was found to be unlicensed and unvaccinated. Ziegelmeier was cited for having an Unlicensed Dog and Dog Attacking Person.
On June 11, 2014 at approximately 6:20 a.m. officers received information that Gregory Hernandez, 24 from Sparta, was wanted on a warrant and currently at a Water Street address. Officers confirmed that the Department of Corrections had issued an apprehension request for Hernandez and took him into custody without further incident.
On June 7, 2014 at approximately 8:00 p.m. officers responded to a reported disturbance in the 200 block of Franklin St. The caller reported hearing shouts of “why did you hit me”. When officers arrived they were directed to apartment #4 where they spoke with one of the residents and were allowed inside. The officers were able to determine some sort of altercation took place between Lance Root, 47 from Sparta, and Marla Niemann, 45 from Sparta that triggered the call to police. Niemann had been drinking which violated her probation and was taken into custody at the request of the Department of Corrections. Another resident, Ryan Coole, 21 from Sparta, was found inside and he too had been drinking in violation of his probation and was taken into custody at the request of the Department of Corrections. The case was sent to the Monroe County District Attorney for review.
On June 8, 2014 around 1:30 a.m., a Sparta officer on patrol was advised by dispatch that a Monroe County Sheriff's Deputy had observed Derek D. Crocker, 28 of Sparta, outside of the Hangout tavern. Crocker was known to have a Monroe County Warrant and was featured on the Monroe County Sheriff's Department's Mugshot Monday. Upon arrival, the officer observed Crocker, whom he was familiar with through prior contacts standing outside of the Hangout. While walking towards the Hangout, the officer observed Crocker walk inside of the Hangout and contact was made with him in the rear of the tavern. Crocker was arrested for the warrant and transported to the Monroe County Jail.
On June 6, 2014 at approximately 8:15 p.m., a Sparta officer on patrol observed Cody D. Nelson, 26 of Sparta, whom he knew through previous contacts, driving westbound on Wisconsin St. The officer checked with dispatch and was advised that Nelson had a 7:00 p.m. curfew on his bonds. A traffic stop was initiated on the vehicle after it turned onto Industrial Dr. and Nelson produced a Wisconsin DL confirming his identity. Nelson advised the officer that he had gotten off of work at 7:00 p.m. and was waiting for his passenger, verbally identified as Brittany J. Foster, 29 of Sparta, and was currently on his way home. Nelson was subsequently arrested for two counts of felony Bail Jumping and placed on a Probation Hold. Nelson was transported to the Monroe County Jail and released to Jail staff without incident.
On Saturday, June 07, 2014, at approximately 2:40 p.m. the City of Sparta Police Department responded to EZ Money Payday Loans, 530 Black River Street S. for an armed robbery. A masked male suspect approached the cashier that was working and demanded money. The suspect did display a handgun to the employee during the robbery.
As an Officer arrived on scene the suspect fled on foot out the back door with an undisclosed amount of cash. After a short foot pursuit with officers the suspect was taken into custody. Jacob Elliott, 25 from Camp Douglas, was arrested and taken to the Monroe County Jail where he remains in custody and scheduled to appear in Monroe County Circuit Court on Monday, June 9, 2014.
The robbery remains under investigation and anyone with information is encouraged to call the Sparta Police Department at 608-269-3122, or Monroe County Crime Stoppers at 608-269-STOP.
On June 1, 2014 at approximately 12:28 a.m., Sparta officers responded to a disturbance at Lynda Lou's Tavern, 214 S. Water St. They were given information that a male subject had gotten rough with customers and the owner had asked him to leave. When the owner had asked him to leave, the male subject, later identified as Michael J. Kass (no relation to Chief Kass), 43 of Sparta, broke the window of the bar and left the scene. Officers then observed a blood trail going northbound on Water St. leading away from the bar and were told by two pedestrians that they saw the man whom the blood trail belonged to entering the hospital. Kass was later located at the Sparta Mayo Emergency Room and did advised officers that he had punched the window out. Kass was issued a citation for Criminal Damage to Property.
On June 4, 2014 at approximately 5:34 a.m., Sparta officers were advised of a male subject attempting to make entry into a residence at 722 W. Montgomery St. Upon arrival, contact was made with the suspect, Christopher D. Lyons, 24 of Sparta, and the complainant. Lyons was found to be heavily intoxicated and had attempted to enter the residence but was not able to provide any reason for why he attempted to make entry into the residence. When officers asked questions about what had happened or why he was there, Lyons laughed and was not able to provide any other information. Lyons submitted to a PBT which resulted in a .275. Lyons was arrested for Disorderly Conduct and transported to the Monroe County Jail without incident.
On June 2, 2014 at approximately 1:17 a.m., a Sparta officer on patrol observed a vehicle which drove onto the center median by Club 16. The officer followed the vehicle and observed the it deviating in its lane and crossing the center line. The officer initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle as it pulled into a parking stall in front of a business. The driver was then observed opening the door and getting out of the vehicle. The officer could detect a strong odor of intoxicants and asked the driver if he was having problems driving. The driver, later identified by his Wisconsin DL as John E. Tatzel, 37 of Sparta, advised the officer he did not have any problems driving. He advised the officer he had about 4 beers, but later stated he had 5 beers, when asked if he had been drinking that night. Tatzel was put through field sobriety tests and given a PBT which resulted in a .228. Dispatch advised the officer that Tatzel also had a warrant for his arrest through Monroe County. Tazel was warned for Operating Left of Center and Unsafe Lane Deviation. He was arrested on the warrant and Operating while Intoxicated-3rd Offense. He was transported to the Monroe County Jail without incident.
On May 30, 2014 at approximately 3:20 p.m. the Department received a traffic complaint alleging a driver failed to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk which caused the pedestrian to jump out of the way to avoid being struck. The caller described the vehicle and an officer located it a short time later being driven on Pearl Street. The vehicle was stopped and driver identified as Nicholas J. Johnson, 21 from Sparta. Johnson commented that he remembered seeing a crossing guard and the officer noted signs of impairment along with the strong odor of marijuana. Johnson admitted to smoking marijuana around 2:00 p.m. and having a bag of it inside his pocket. A subsequent search of vehicle turned up several more bags of marijuana and cash that is consistent with someone who is distributing the illegal substance. Johnson was arrested for Possession of Marijuana, Possession of Marijuana with the Intent to Deliver and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. Johnson was also cited for Failure to Yield to a Pedestrian and Having Open Intoxicants in a Motor Vehicle.