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Firefighters Conduct Training At West Side Property

Resident on the city's West Side might have noticed a structure fire burning on Thursday morning, but the blaze was part of a Madison Fire Department training program.



See Images From Training Exercise

A Meriter property on the 8000 block of Raymond Road was being used as part of a firefighter bootcamp, according to fire officials. During the last two weeks, fire crews were able practice things like search and rescue efforts and wall breaching in the building.

Officials said that the house fire on Friday was all about observation.

"We are going with the companies and looking at the fire and then, fire and smokes moves down hallways (in a) residential house fire," said Madison Fire Capt. Lance Langer.

Langer said after all the training was performed in the building earlier, but it's no longer a safe structure for the firefighters to enter. This is why they use the final burn only for observation, they said.

Teen Accused Of Posting Facebook Threat

Police have arrested a 17-year-old boy who they said posted a Facebook threat against students and staff at Madison Memorial High School.

Daniel D. Coburn, 17, was arrested on charges of unlawful use of computerized communications and disorderly conduct. He was arrested outside the Lussier Community Center on Wednesday morning.

Madison Police said they believe the boy used a computer at the Lussier Community Center, which is located near the high school, to post the threat.

Police spokesman Joel DeSpain told The Associated Press the boy threatened that people at the high school would be shot.

As a result of the posting, school district officials took safety precautions at Memorial High School, Jefferson Middle School and Muir Elementary School, which are located near the community center. School officials said students kept to their normal schedules.

Sub-Zero To Lay Off 100 Madison Employees

Sub-Zero Inc. has notified the state that it will lay off about 100 employees.

The Madison-based premium appliance company notified the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development on Tuesday that approximately 100 employees will be affected on or about April 2, with subsequent layoffs occurring May 7 and June 29.

Dave Goodspeed, president of the Sheet Metal Workers Union Local 565, said these are not new layoffs. He said layoffs have been happening in stages since September 2010, when the company announced its refrigeration, freezer and wine-storage unit production would move to Goodyear, Ariz.

Goodspeed said the 100 jobs listed in the layoff notice to the state Tuesday amount to the final stage of layoffs so the company can close its facility at 4717 Hammersley Road in Madison.

Goodspeed confirmed that about 100 people will not longer have jobs sometime between the beginning of April and end of June.

Stay tuned to WISC-TV and Channel 3000 for continuing coverage.

Senior Citizen Accused Of Beating Up Octogenarian

Madison police said a 65-year-old Madison man was arrested over the weekend after he punched an 81-year-old neighbor several times.

Andrew F. Ketterer was arrested on a charge of substantial battery, according to a Madison Police Department incident report.

The incident happened just after 10 a.m. Saturday in the 700 block of Struck Street.

According to police, Ketterer passed his 81-year-old neighbor when he pulled into the parking lot of his apartment complex Saturday. Ketterer claims the octogenarian reached out with his left elbow and took a swipe at his driver-side mirror, damaging it, as he drove by.

The 81-year-old claims his younger neighbor actually swerved at him causing his mirror contact, police said.

Police said a witness reported looking out a window and seeing Ketterer on top of, and punching, the 81-year-old.

New Town Pub Closes Due To Old Troubles

Despite new owners and a new name, a bar on Madison’s West Side couldn’t shake its old troubles.

After Old Town Pub located at 724 South Gammon Road closed several months ago, new owners then re-opened the tavern as the New Town Pub.

But after several incidents in which police officers had to be called, the owners said that they have decided to shut the bar down once and for all.

Alder Lisa Subeck said the city worked with the owners to solve the problems, but ultimately, it was decided that closing was the best option.

"Certainly, the city played a role in this bar closing. The landlords played a role in the bar closing and the owners themselves played a role," said Subeck. "Things were escalating at a really quick pace. We saw a number of incidents within a short period of time."

The owners said that that they were able to give their lease to a new business -- a breakfast restaurant -- which will move into the space soon.

St. Vincent’s Is 'Recycling the Warmth'

To help local families stay warm on snowy winter nights, St. Vincent de Paul is holding its 20th annual Recycle the Warmth drive from Jan. 27 to Jan. 29.

Organizers are looking for new or gently used blankets and bedding that can be given to Madison residents struggling with poverty.

"We'll find folks who have nothing, and sometimes nothing means no bed and it means that a child in the family has a parka to pull over themselves at night instead of a blanket," said Ernie Stetenfeld, St. Vincent de Paul’s spokesman.

Donations can be dropped off at ShopKo stores, St. Vincent de Paul thrift stores and area churches. Many church congregations are also accepting these donations.

For a complete list of drop-off sites visit: