Saturday, July 24, 2021

Vintage Front Engine Dragsters and Altered Cars of Yesteryear

"Check out these wild and crazy Vintage Front Engine Dragsters and Altered Cars of Yesteryear that were at the Out-A-Sight Drags at Great Lakes Dragaway in Union Grove, Wisconsin 6-25-2021. "Thank you for watching, if you would like to see some more great Muscle Car videos click on this Playlist:"

Oberscharführer Oswald Pohl, Nazi Secret Weapons Chief and Cannabis Commander

 I always figured that the Nazis were smoking something.

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Stephen Harmon, Corona Man Who Tweeted About Refusing To Get Vaccinated, Dies From COVID-19

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — A 34-year-old man who tweeted about refusing to get the vaccine died earlier this week from COVID, chronicling his hospital journey along the way.

Stephen Harmon’s last tweet from his now-protected Twitter account was written Wednesday, just before he was intubated.

It read:

“i’m choosing to go under intubation, i’ve fought this thing as hard as i can but unfortunately it’s reached a point of critical choice & as much as i hate having to do this i’d rather it be willingness than forced emergency procedure. don’t know when i’ll wake up, please pray.”

Just six weeks earlier, he tweeted, “If you’re having email problems, I feel back for you, son. I got 99 problems, but a vax ain’t one.”

“I can’t even emphasize how unbelievably demoralizing this is,” Dr. Oren Friedman said.

Friedman is on the frontline, treating COVID patients at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. He said the hospital has seen a tenfold increase in COVID admissions.

“Virtually every single person that is getting sick enough to be admitted to the hospital has not been vaccinated,” he said.

On his now-private Instagram account, Harmon posted photos of himself from his hospital bed. He wrote that he had pneumonia and was at risk of brain damage due to his low oxygen levels.

“I can tell you that for the respiratory therapists and nurses and doctors that are having to go into rooms and take care of patients who are this sick at this stage — and to know that it’s preventable if people simply had taken the vaccine — it is an awful feeling of [post-traumatic stress disorder] and frustration,” Friedman said.

Harmon was a graduate of Hillson College and attended Hillsong Church in Los Angeles. In an Instagram post, Hillsong founder Brian Houston called Harmon one of the most generous people.

In a written statement provided to CBS Los Angeles, Houston said:

“The death of Stephen Harmon was a sad day for those who knew him and called him a friend. Any loss of life is a moment to mourn and offer support to those who are suffering and so our heartfelt prayers are with his family and those who loved him. As a church, our focus is on the spiritual well-being of the people in each of our local communities. On any medical issue, we strongly encourage those in our church to follow the guidance of their doctors. While many of our staff, leadership and congregation have already received the COVID-19 vaccine, we recognize this is a personal decision for each individual to make with the counsel of medical professionals.”

On Sunday, three days before his death, Harmon tweeted, “If you don’t have faith that God can heal me over your stupid ventilator then keep the Hell out of my ICU room, there’s no room in here for fear or lack of faith!”

“I had one patient who looked at me right before we had to place the breathing tube down, and he got very tearful and he shook his head and he said, ‘Oh my God, I think I’ve made a really, really terrible mistake,'” Friedman said.

Unlike at the start of the pandemic, Friedman said he has started seeing young and otherwise healthy people being hospitalized with COVID. He said the only breakthrough cases he has been treating are in those who already had compromised immune systems.


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From Fox6Now:

Packers' stalled contract talks with Davante Adams tied to DeAndre Hopkins' deal

From JSOnline:
Tom Silverstein
Packers News

GREEN BAY - The Green Bay Packers have reached the point in contract talks with
wide receiver Davante Adams where each side has refused to move off its negotiating spot.

And so, as often happens in high-stakes negotiations, news of Adams and his agent, Frank Bauer, breaking off talks on a contract extension surfaced Friday.

A source from Adams’ camp said the Packers have refused to consider the two-year, $54.5 million extension Arizona receiver DeAndre Hopkins signed last year in establishing a yearly average for Adams’ extension.

NFL Network was first to report that talks between the two sides were suspended and the Hopkins deal was the main issue.

Adams has a year left on his contract, and a report like this surfacing before training camp starts isn’t a surprise. It’s ideal for Adams to sign the deal before the start of the regular season so that he is protected financially in case he suffers an injury during the final year of his contract.

Read more:

Mount Pleasant police squad hit, dash cam and body cam videos

From Fox6Now:

Gas station shooting: Deputy recovering, fundraiser started

From Fox6Now:

The Racine County deputy wounded in an exchange of gunfire with a gas station shooting suspect is now at home but has a long recovery process ahead.

As an undercover investigator, the deputy's name is not being released – but that is not stopping his friends from finding a way for him to be recognized.

The shooting unfolded at a Mobil gas station on County Highway K the morning of July 13. The deputy was shot while pumping gas.

Active scene at Franksville Mobil gas station

Scene at Franksville Mobil gas station

The sheriff's office says 32-year-old John McCarthy shot and killed 22-year-olf Anthony Griger while trying to steal his car at another gas station. When the car wouldn't start, McCarthy drove 2 miles to the Mobil and tried again; there, the person he approached was the plainclothes deputy.

"There’s no doubt in his mind even. He said if it was anyone else, any other normal person out at 7 or 7:30 in the morning getting their gas, getting their coffee in the gas station, that person most certainly would have been dead," said Angie Sadowski.

Anthony Griger, John McCarthy

Sadowski has known the deputy for decades. Officials say the deputy and McCarthy exchanged gunfire before McCarthy shot himself in the head. No one else was injured.

"He deserves every amount of recognition. He deserves a parade. He deserves planes flying overhead with his name and everything that we could possibly give him," Sadowski said.

FREE DOWNLOAD: Get breaking news alerts in the FOX6 News app for iOS or Android.

To help him through the recovery process, Sadowski set up a GoFundMe online fundraiser to raise money for the deputy. She said the community should be thankful it was him pumping gas that day.

"He verbalized that, said that ‘I’m glad that it was me and not anyone else.’ I mean who says that?" said Sadowski. "Who gets shot a bunch of times and is in the hospital with broken bones and then says I’m glad it was me instead of somebody else? I don’t know who else would do that."

Sadowski said the deputy was shot three times and is now at home recovering, but it is expected to be a long process.

GoFundMe page:


Oak Creek prostitution, human trafficking arrests

From Fox6Now:

Fifty-three people were arrested in relation to several prostitution and human trafficking operations, Oak Creek police announced Friday, July 23.

According to the Oak Creek Police Department, officers with the Special Enforcement Unit conducted the operations last week. The 53 arrests included 41 municipal citations, seven state charges and five warrant arrests.

Police also recovered two illegal firearms, one of which was a rifle possessed by a felon.


30 Years Later: The arrest of a Milwaukee serial killer, Jeffrey Dahmer

From TMJ4:

Posted at 7:00 PM, Jul 23, 2021
and last updated 11:28 PM, Jul 23, 2021

MILWAUKEE — Thirty years ago, Milwaukee woke up to the news that Jeffrey Dahmer was responsible for killing more than a dozen people. The majority of those murders happened in an apartment near Marquette University's campus.

Neighbors interviewed by TMJ4 News on July 22, 1991 said they smelled something coming from his apartment.

Jeffrey Dahmer
Jeffrey Dahmer sits in a court room. (file photo)

“We thought it was his deep freeze. Now we found out he has dead bodies in it,” said an unidentified neighbor.

All the remains of the apartment near 25th Street and Kilbourn is a grassy lot. We returned there with Clayborn Benson, the former TMJ4 photographer and current executive director of the Wisconsin Black Historical Society/Museum. He said he remembered the scene that morning.

"We could actually see the body parts being carried out the back door,” said Benson.

Jeffrey Dahmer crime scene
Milwaukee investigators take out body parts stored in a container in Jeffrey Dahmer's apartment on the city's west side in July 1991. (file photo)

He’ll never forget the family member with missing loved ones who showed up to the crime scene.

"I began to see family members come and ask questions about who were these people. Did they know of their loved ones, and they would hold pictures up, they're saying, 'I'm missing a brother. I'm missing a cousin,’” said Benson.

He interviewed Michael Lindsey, the brother of Errol Lindsey, 19, who had been missing since April of that year. It would later be learned Lindsey was murdered by Dahmer.

Clayborn Benson
Clayborn Benson stands on the grass lot that used to be the site of Jeffrey Dahmer's apartment. Benson was a former TMJ4 Photojournalist and one of the first people on the scene to talk to family members who had missing loved ones.

“The Dahmer case was an awakening for Milwaukee in many ways. An awakening that there were people who were missing and not followed up on,” said Jeff Fleming.

Fleming works for the City of Milwaukee in the mayor’s office. In 1991, Fleming was a crime reporter for TMJ4.

"The case of of Konerak Sinthasomphone raised serious questions of how the police treated people,” said Fleming.

Jeff Fleming
Jeff Fleming, a former TMJ4 reporter, was one of the journalists on the scene after Milwaukee Police arrested Jeffrey Dahmer and found body parts in his apartment.

Three months before Dahmer was caught, one of his victims, Konerak Sinthasomphone, 14, escaped Dahmer’s apartment. An alert neighbor called police when they saw a naked and disoriented boy running down the street. Police showed up, and so did Dahmer. He convinced police the boy was drunk and they were lovers. Police brought the boy back to Dahmer’s apartment.

“Would they have treated Konerak Sinthasomphone differently had he been a blond woman? Probably they would have,” said Fleming.

Fleming says there was an immediate change at the Milwaukee Police Department after the Dahmer case.

“It certainly has changed the way the police department views missing persons cases, looking at a situation and not as quickly dismissing cases. But cases that deserve follow up,” said Fleming.

Dahmer confessed to killing 17 people. He was sentenced to multiple life sentences. He was killed in prison on Nov. 28, 1994.


'They're bullying us': Mount Pleasant business owner says village landlocked and blighted property after they refused to sell

From TMJ4:

Posted at 5:19 PM, Jul 23, 2021
and last updated 6:24 PM, Jul 23, 2021

RACINE COUNTY — A Mount Pleasant business owner says he’s suing the village after they landlocked his property and forced him to close after negotiations to sell the land fell apart.

Village officials deemed the property ‘blighted’ land that sits in a Foxconn construction zone after the owner refused to sell a majority of his land.

Jack and Colleen Erickson have owned Erickson Trucks-N-Parts, which sits next to I-94, for more than two decades. Just a few years ago, they applied for permits to build brand-new facilities, but now they can’t even get on their property as barricades block the entrance.

“They're bullying us,” Jack said. “There's no question about it, they're bullying us."

Poster image - 2021-07-23T181524.098.jpg
Jack Erickson

Jack said they agreed to sell just under 2 acres of land to Mount Pleasant for $1.6 million, so a frontage road could be expanded for the Foxconn project.

The Ericksons say negotiations fell apart for the rest of their property, including where their business sits, because they felt the offer was too low.

“They landlocked us, so then they had this plan on this public nuisance and this blight. I mean it was a planned deal,” Jack said.

Poster image - 2021-07-23T181514.043.jpg

After months of the Ericksons being unable to get onto their property, Mount Pleasant officials voted two weeks ago to deem the Ericksons’ remaining land as ‘blighted.' Under Wisconsin law, that means the property is dilapidated or unsafe.

"We've been in business for 22 years out there, and never had any kind of a ticket or warning on appearance or anything,” Jack said.

The village said it moved forward with blighting the land because of “the current state of the property and lack of action by Erickson to remedy the condition of its property."

The village said it pursued all reasonable efforts to purchase the property for infrastructure improvements, including an offer to buy a similar sized lot for the Ericksons on the same road, along with $900,000 for moving expenses.

Colleen said the land they were offered would need several million dollars to pay for utilities and asphalt to be installed. Jack and Colleen believe it would take more than a year of construction before they could reopen their business.

Poster image - 2021-07-23T181509.132.jpg

“I don't think it's right that they want to pay us pennies on the dollar or move us somewhere that isn't where we can pick up and basically resume business, because that would not have happened with what they offered,” she said.

The Ericksons say they’re in the process of launching a lawsuit against the village for allegedly using illegal methods to take the land they want to keep.

"They want us to roll over. We're not going to. I don't have a lot of money, but I have some and we're going to fight them because I feel what they're doing to us is wrong,” Jack said.

The center of Foxconn construction is just a mile east of the Erickson's property. The village said Foxconn and Fisker are still in conversations with the state’s economic development corporation before determining whether to build electric vehicles in Mount Pleasant in the future.


Open Blog - Weekend

That's pretty.

Friday, July 23, 2021

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'Nothing ever happens in Franksville': Racine County gas station shootings were a sudden, random outburst of violence in quiet community

From JSOnline:

Sophie CarsonEvan Frank
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel
A Pilot Travel Center, 13712 Northwestern Ave., Franksville, is seen Thursday, July 15, 2021. The gas station is located just off Interstate 94 in rural Racine County. A Hartland man shot and killed 22-year-old Anthony "Nino" Griger of Elkhorn while Griger was pumping gas Tuesday morning. He also attempted three carjackings and shot at an undercover officer at a gas station two miles away, injuring him, before shooting himself in the head.

It would all be over within 8 minutes.

The July 13 shooting rampage that left a 22-year-old gas station patron and the gunman dead, and an undercover officer injured, was a sudden outburst of violence in a typically quiet area of rural Racine County.

The event sent shockwaves across southeast Wisconsin: from the tiny community of Franksville where the shootings occurred, to the Hartland apartment complex where the suspect lived, to the Franklin school district where the victim attended high school just four years earlier.

Nearly two weeks later, key questions remain about why 32-year-old John R. McCarthy tried to carjack three cars across two gas stations, shooting Anthony “Nino” Griger of Elkhorn and a still-unidentified investigator from the Racine County Sheriff’s Office in the process.

But the details that have emerged depict a chaotic scene. Gunshots disrupting a routine Tuesday morning. McCarthy’s desperate attempts to steal three vehicles. A brief search for additional gunmen.

More:Authorities identify the victim, suspect from Tuesday's gas station shootings in Racine County

Chain of events began with fire alarm at Hartland apartment complex

For the residents of Arbor Valley Apartments in Hartland, the day began unexpectedly.

Around 6:45 a.m. or earlier, someone pulled a fire alarm at the complex. The call never made it to the fire department, as a building manager noticed there were no flames and turned the alarm off, according to Hartland Fire Chief Torin Misko.

It’s assumed that McCarthy, a resident, pulled the alarm. When everyone evacuated, he was gone, a neighbor said.

From there, it’s unclear what led McCarthy to the Pilot Travel Center, just off Interstate 94 in Racine County.

Situated at the County Road K exit, the gas station is also a truck stop and has an Arby’s restaurant and drive-thru.

Once he stopped there, McCarthy “lied in wait” for the “right opportunity” to shoot a patron filling his tank with gas, Racine County Sheriff Christopher Schmaling said at a Racine County Board meeting.

A Pilot Travel Center, 13712 Northwestern Ave., Franksville, is seen Thursday, July 15, 2021. The gas station includes an Arby's restaurant and a truck stop. A Hartland man shot and killed 22-year-old Anthony "Nino" Griger of Elkhorn while Griger was pumping gas Tuesday morning.

That person happened to be Griger, who had no connection to McCarthy, according to authorities.

After shooting him, McCarthy looked through Griger’s pockets for car keys. He tried to drive the car away but could not operate it, according to the Wisconsin Department of Justice.

Then he tried to carjack someone else driving a white pickup, according to emergency radio audio provided by Broadcastify. That person drove away, and he fired several rounds at the truck.

The 911 call at the Pilot station came in around 7:33 a.m.

Callers reported the gunman took off in a light blue SUV.

“When he realized there was no other victim that he could attack, he got back into his vehicle and headed eastbound on Highway K,” Schmaling said.

Farm fields line the two miles of country highway between the Pilot station and the place McCarthy would stop next: a Mobil station at the edge of the small commercial area of Franksville, a community that is really part of Caledonia

The Mobil station, located at 10616 Northwestern Ave., is one of the first businesses McCarthy would have encountered as he drove east. Across the street is a popular breakfast spot, The Meadows Family Restaurant, and a laundromat.

As police squads were flooding into the Pilot station, McCarthy was just arriving at Mobil. He walked up to a car and tried to carjack it, but an undercover officer on his way to work was inside, authorities have said.

“This individual," Schmaling said of McCarthy, "it’s clear to me after watching the (surveillance) video, had no idea who he is about to encounter."

Wearing plainclothes and in an unmarked car, the officer exchanged gunfire with McCarthy.

Both were struck by shots. Then McCarthy shot himself in the head, the Department of Justice has said. The department's Division of Criminal Investigation is handling the investigation of the officer-involved shooting.

That 911 call came in around 7:41 a.m.

From there, dispatchers were directing a deluge of police squads and emergency vehicles between the two gas stations.

Roads were blocked off. The Pilot station was shut down and patrons evacuated. McCarthy and the officer were taken to a Racine hospital.

Officers had to clear both sites, making sure there were no additional victims or shooters. The Mobil station, which is run by Franksville Oil and LP Gas, has several out-buildings on its property, including a car wash, garages and a flooring business.

As police reviewed security footage at Pilot, they noticed a man in a gray shirt running away from the station shortly after shots were fired. Could it be another gunman? Officers started looking for someone that matched his description.

Soon, an officer radioed in: We have the guy. He wasn’t a suspect, but simply ran for cover upon hearing the shots.

Griger would be pronounced dead at the scene, while McCarthy was pronounced dead at the hospital.

Schmaling, the sheriff, said he believes the officer, who has not been publicly named, prevented “more of a mass shooting.”

“This maniac would’ve gone on another rampage," he said. "He just shot a 22-year-old young man, executed, and he was going to go right down the line.” 

The Mobil gas station at 10616 Northwestern Ave. in Franksville is seen Thursday, July 15, 2021. A Hartland man who killed a patron at a nearby gas station then tried to carjack an undercover officer at the Mobil station died from his injuries after he shot himself in the head and was also shot by the officer.

Shooter acted erratically at tanning salon days earlier

Little is known publicly about what drove McCarthy on such a rampage.

But just three days prior to the shooting, a Hartland police report indicates he was exhibiting erratic and aggressive behavior.

McCarthy received a municipal disorderly conduct ticket for harassing an employee July 10 at Bronzer Image Tanning salon, 418 Merton Ave., Hartland.

According to the police report, McCarthy went to the tanning salon at 3:45 p.m. He tanned for 15 minutes, walked out of the changing room and asked a female employee when the business closed.

When told it closed at 4 p.m., McCarthy charged at the woman and said in a firm, loud voice, “Take me home.” The woman screamed and told McCarthy to get away from her. She ran to the back of the store where she reached a storage space.

The woman noticed McCarthy left the salon and was headed to his vehicle. After noticing two people in front of the tanning salon, she “begged them to come inside” to help her.

“I was shaking and hysterical with tears running down my face because I knew he was going to hurt me,” the woman said in the report. 

The two people she’d asked for help said McCarthy waited in his car for a few minutes, then drove away quickly, trying to look inside the salon as he passed.

Police contacted McCarthy after the incident. McCarthy said he was being an “a--” and he thought the employee was “hot.”

A police officer told McCarthy not to return to the tanning salon and issued the ticket.

Aside from a 2017 speeding ticket and the salon incident, Hartland police said they had few, if any, run-ins with McCarthy.

Neighbors in his Hartland apartment complex said that McCarthy mostly kept to himself. He rarely emerged from his apartment and usually had the blinds drawn around his home. 

The complex, which was built less than a decade ago, is quiet but not far from downtown. Units go for more than $1,100 a month.

McCarthy was a 2007 graduate of Arrowhead High School and grew up in the Oconomowoc area, where his parents still live.

A childhood friend who spoke with the Journal Sentinel and asked not to be named said McCarthy was “quiet and a little odd, but still a normal kid." He said the two used to go fishing together and that McCarthy was always willing to help out a friend.

McCarthy’s parents directed all media inquiries to their attorney, who declined to comment.

Quiet Franksville community reacts to sudden violence

The small community of Franksville was rattled by the burst of violence.

While it’s not too far from Milwaukee or Racine, the community has a distinctly small-town feel: one stoplight, a handful of businesses, a diner where everyone knows the waitresses by name.

Wes Dresen, a local resident, was filling up at the Mobil station two days after the shooting. He said the events were troubling.

“Nothing ever happens in Franksville," he said. "It’s a very quiet community.” 

At the same time, he knows it was a random occurrence.

“It’s not like it’s going to keep happening,” he said.

The storefront for the Mobil gas station at 10616 Northwestern Ave., Franksville is seen Thursday, July 15, 2021. A Hartland man who killed a patron at another gas station then tried to carjack an undercover officer at the Mobil station died from his injuries after he shot himself in the head and was also shot by the officer.

Dresen has a permit to carry a gun  but doesn’t usually have one with him. He said if he’d been at the gas station that morning he could have been killed too. 

And he’s grateful the officer happened to be there to stop McCarthy from potentially going across the street to The Meadows restaurant and shooting everyone inside. It would have been busy at the time with the breakfast crowd. 

But he clarified: The officer isn’t a hero because of his law enforcement status. It’s because of what he did.

The distinction has sparked some discussion in Racine County.

Schmaling, speaking to the County Board of Supervisors the evening of the shooting, said the case was an example of why the board should not cut funding to law enforcement as it considers the budget.

“As you prepare your budget, please look at these situations," he said. "This is where the rubber meets the road. This is where the training comes into play. This is where the equipment comes in handy, if I may, right?” 

He brought up the idea of having citizens make traffic stops and called it “insane and idiotic” and “ridiculous.”

handful of U.S. cities have considered limiting the reasons an officer could pull over someone. In Brooklyn Center, Minnesota, unarmed civilians will handle minor traffic violations following the passage of a police reform bill this May.

A supervisor who has advocated for community policing strategies then told the Racine Journal Times he was “flabbergasted” by the comments and what he saw as a political move following a tragedy.

State Rep. Robert Wittke, R-Racine, who was eating breakfast at The Meadows restaurant a few days after the shooting with a group of local leaders, lauded the officer who stopped the gunman.

“I couldn’t be prouder of our law enforcement,” he said.

Community rallies around victims

The Racine County Sheriff’s Office said the officer suffered multiple gunshot wounds that fractured his pelvis.

On Tuesday the officer was released from the hospital. "Hundreds of law enforcement officers" escorted him along the route to the sheriff's office in a procession, the department said in a news release.

His injuries are not life-threatening, and he is expected to make a full recovery.

Sgt. Michael Luell has said the department has no plans to release the officer’s name because he has asked them to keep it private. The state Department of Justice has named officers in similar incidents in the past.

Schmaling said the officer was a 21-year veteran of the department who was working on a “very special assignment.”

“I can tell you he is an outstanding investigator. He’s done a great job in bringing some of the most ruthless criminals to justice in our community,” Schmaling told the county board.

A gunman killed Anthony F. Griger, 22, of Elkhorn execution style while filling his car with gas Tuesday in Racine County. Authorities provided an undated photo of Griger when they identified him.

Meanwhile, the family of Anthony “Nino” Griger has witnessed a massive outpouring of support following his untimely death.

Griger, who graduated from Franklin High School in 2017, married young. He often posted pictures with his wife on his Instagram account, and less than a month ago he posted a “throwback” of the two on Summerfest grounds. In the caption, he wrote that he couldn’t wait to go to festivals with her again this year.

A spokesman for Franklin Public Schools expressed condolences on behalf of the district.

“We are saddened for the members of our community who know him, love him, went to school with him, and grew up with him,” spokesman Chad Kafka said.

His family has not responded to interview requests from the Journal Sentinel and has asked for privacy through a sheriff’s office statement.

GoFundMe page for Griger’s family has raised over $30,000 since it was created last week.

“Nino was a good kid, funny with a sharp wit,” one donor commented on the page.

The relative who created the page, Sandy Halvorsen, thanked those who had donated.

“Thank you for the outpouring of support and generosity. There are no words to express the gratitude felt during this difficult time,” she said. “It's unbelievable.”

Erik Hanley, Samantha Hendrickson, Elliot Hughes and Joe Taschler of the Journal Sentinel staff contributed to this report.

Contact Sophie Carson at (414) 223-5512 or Follow her on Twitter at @SCarson_News.