On December 9, 2013 at approximately 8:00 a.m. an employee of the Amber Inn reported a customer acting strangely. The employee was concerned that the customer appeared underage and was “watching her every move”. The customer was identified as Nicholas Bernal, 27 from Sparta, and found to be wanted on a Monroe County warrant. Bernal was taken into custody and transported to the Monroe County Jail.
On December 9, 2013 the Department received information that Curtis Suriano, 32 from Conover, was a registered sex offender who absconded from Vilas County and was now believed to be in the City of Sparta. Officers confirmed that the Department of Corrections has issued a warrant for Suriano and proceeded to 302 Walrath Street where he was believed to be staying. At approximately 8:15 p.m. an officer knocked on the door and a man matching the description of Suriano answered, then immediately shut the door and retreated inside. Despite repeated knocks the occupants refused to open the door. The home owner was contacted and officers were allowed inside where Suriano surrendered without further incident.
On December 8, 2013 at approximately 3:00 a.m. an officer on patrol saw an occupied vehicle stopped on River Road with its hazard lights on. The officer turned around to assist the motorist and the driver suddenly started to drive away. The officer was then advised by the Communication Center that a vehicle matching this one was reportedly driving the wrong way on the Interstate. The officer was able to stop the vehicle and identify the driver as Noe Martinez Delgado, 25 from Camp Douglas. Martinez Delgado showed signs of intoxication and attempted several field sobriety tests before being arrested for OMVWI. Martinez Delgado was also cited for Operating after Suspension (2nd offense) and taken to the Monroe County Jail. A passenger in the vehicle told the officer that they were coming from Tomah and had been driving in the wrong lane when they almost struck a semi prior to exiting in Sparta.
On December 7, 2013 at approximately 5:15 p.m. a Wal-Mart loss prevention employee stopped Shawnyeaha Martenson, 29 from Sparta, after observing her concealing items in her purse and leaving the last point of sale without paying for the merchandise. The investigating officer discovered that Martenson had concealed almost $200 worth of mostly cosmetic items in her purse and also found marijuana and drug paraphernalia inside a cosmetic bag. Martenson was issued municipal citations for Retail Theft, Possession of Marijuana and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia.
On December 4, 2013 at approximately 1:50 a.m. an officer on patrol saw a vehicle registered to Michael Godlewski, 32 from Sparta, pass by him. The officer discovered Godlewski had an active arrest warrant issued by the City of Cashton and stopped the vehicle on Iband Ave near 8th Court. The warrant was confirmed and while talking with Godlewski the officer noted signs of intoxication. Godewski attempted several field sobriety tests prior to being arrested for OMVWI (4th offense). Godlewski refused to submit to chemical testing and a search warrant was issued by a Monroe County judge. A blood sample was obtained and sent to the crime lab for testing. After completing OMVWI processing custody of Godlewski was turned over to the Monroe County Jail.
On August 8, 2013 at approximately 1:55 a.m. an officer was walking in the 600 block of Wolcott Street when she heard what sounded like a traffic crash nearby. The officer located the crash in the 700 block of Wolcott St. and discovered that a pickup truck had struck a parked semi-tractor. The driver of the pickup had fled the scene prior to the officer arriving. The owner of the pickup truck was identified as Jeffery Von Ruden, 26 from Sparta, and he could not be immediately located. The investigation continued and on December 1, 2013 the investigating officer obtained sufficient information to conclude that Von Ruden was the driver of the vehicle when the crash occurred and that he attempted to mislead officers by claiming the vehicle was taken from the Super 8 motel while he was camping with friends. Von Ruden was cited for Hit & Run – Unattended Vehicle, Unreasonable and Imprudent Speed, Reckless Driving and Failing to Notify DMV of an Address Change.
On December 1, 2013 at approximately 1:50 a.m. officers responded to a disturbance at 904 Hill Street. The caller was reporting someone pounding on doors. When officers arrived they encountered William Krause, 33 from Sparta, who claimed he was trying to get his son back from an ex-girlfriend’s apartment. The investigating officers discovered that Krause had left his 7 year old son alone while he went to a downtown bar. The 7 year old had wandered outside wearing only shorts and was taken inside by the ex-girlfriend. It’s believed that Krause had left the child alone for approximately 45 minutes. Krause was arrested for Neglecting a Child and Disorderly Conduct.
On December 2, 2013 at approximately 1:50 a.m. officers were notified that a vehicle struck a stop sign at the intersection of Water Street at Court Street. The driver fled the scene but the vehicle bumper and license plate were still at the crash site. The investigating officer discovered that the striking vehicle had also jumped the curb and struck a power pole. The striking vehicle was located on Poole Street and the driver identified as Jason Libbey, 30 from Sparta. Libbey showed signs of intoxication and admitted to striking the power pole and then driving away from the scene. Libbey was arrested for OMVWI and cited for Operating with a Prohibited Alcohol Content over .15, Operating without Insurance, and Hit & Run Property Adjacent to a Highway.
On November 25, 2013 at approximately 11:20 p.m. officers responded to 712 Main St. after a neighbor reported a suspicious vehicle in driveway. The neighbor was aware that the occupant was not home and saw several people just sitting in the car. When officers arrived two of the passengers ran from the car and locked themselves inside the house. A third person remained in the car and was identified as Christopher Beeler, 20 from Sparta. The car and Beeler both smelled of marijuana smoke and Beeler told the officers that he and his friends smoked marijuana in the car so that his mother wouldn’t smell it in the house. Beeler resided at the house and gave officers permission to go inside where they located Robert Ragan, 19 from Sparta, and Paul Van Tassel, 19 from Sparta. Ragan and Van Tassel were both cited for Possession of Marijuana and Obstructing an Officer. Beeler was cited for Possession of Marijuana and Possessing of Drug Paraphernalia.
On November 25, 2013 at approximately 6:55 p.m. a Wal-Mart loss prevention employee reported that she had been threatened earlier in the day by Dawn Cole, 49 from Sparta. The employee told the investigating officer that Cole was known to her because she had been caught shoplifting at the store on a prior occasion. The employee saw Cole in the pharmacy area and was watching her when Cole came up to her and started yelling profanities at her because she was being watched. Cole acknowledged that she had been banned from Wal-Mart for the prior shoplifting incident, but said she was just picking up a prescription for a family member. Cole was cited for trespassing and taken into custody for violating the conditions of her probation.
On November 21, 2013 at approximately 9:40 p.m. officers were called to 2962 Icecap Road on the report of a male yelling and screaming. Officers discovered a verbal argument had taken place and that Paul Ingles, 47 from Sparta, had driven away and then returned. The investigating officer located Ingles who admitted to being in an argument and showed signs of intoxication. Ingles was asked to attempt several field sobriety tests and was eventually arrested for OMVWI (2nd offense) and Operating after Revocation. The officer also discovered a sawed-off shotgun uncased inside his truck and arrested him for Possessing a Short Barreled Shotgun and Going Armed while Intoxicated.
On November 29, 2013 at approximately 6:00 p.m. officers responded to a disturbance inside 422 Pearl Street. The caller reported a relative was out of control, punched a window and was now bleeding. When officers arrived they located Brandon Williams, 25 from Appleton, lying on the floor bleeding from cuts believed sustained when he broke a window. His brother, Justin Williams, 22 from Sparta, was seating nearby with a panicked look on his face. Officers attempted to speak with Brandon, however; he spoke incoherently and displayed behavioral traits consistent with synthetic drug use, commonly referred to as Bath Salts. At one point, Brandon jumped up off the floor and charged one of the officers. The officers were then forced to restrain him until medical assistance arrived. Inside the home officers located a bag contained a white powder labeled “Not for Human Consumption” which it’s believed is a synthetic designer drug the brothers ingested. Brandon Williams was transported via ambulance to Mayo Clinic Health System in Sparta and drug related charges are being requested through the Monroe County District Attorney’s Office. Justin Williams was arrested for Possession of Bath Salts.
On November 26, 2013 at approximately 6:05 p.m. an officer on patrol saw Christopher Johnson, 39 from Sparta, outside the Breakaway Bar. The officer knew Johnson had a warrant out for his arrest and when the officer attempted to make contact with Johnson he walked into the bar and tried to dispose of a plastic bag containing cocaine. Johnson was taken into custody on a La Crosse County warrant and arrested for possession of cocaine.
On November 26, 2013 at approximately 2:40 p.m. Officers were called to check the welfare of Natalee Garrison, 29 from Milwaukee, who was reportedly being held against her will at 918 North St. by Todd Gray, 33 of Sparta. Contact was made at the residence and officers found that Garrison was okay and not being held against her will. Todd Gray was found to be intoxicated and was on bond conditions not to consume or possess alcohol. Gray was arrested for three counts of bail jumping.
On November 28, 2013, the Sparta Police Department, and the members from the Sparta Area Fire District responded to a dumpster fire behind Sparta Grill, 106 N. Water. A caller reported the dumpster on fire and when officers arrived the caller claimed to have seen two males throwing something in the dumpster and the dumpster catching fire. The suspects reportedly ran from the scene after the fire started. The fire was extinguished by fire personnel, but the dumpster was destroyed and a business sign belonging to MTNT Productions was damaged. The fire remains under investigation and anyone with information is encouraged to call the police department or Monroe County Crime Stoppers.