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Power Outages; Suicide Suspected, Student Charged With Sexual Assault

WGTD and Gateway's Kenosha campus were among hundreds of We Energies customers that lost power Tuesday night as a result of the bad weather. Power was restored here in about an hour and a half, but then it took a while longer to bring back all of the station's components. At one point overnight, nearly 7,000 homes and businesses were without power in Kenosha County. Areas in Racine County also lost power.  Alliant Energy, which serves western portions of the WGTD listening area, had outages as well. More freezing rain is in the forecast for Wednesday night into Thursday.

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School districts have been mulling over how they're going to make up for days lost due to the weather. Racine Unified has announced that it'll take a mixed-bag approach. Days originally set aside for winter break and teacher inservice have been scrapped in lieu of a regular class schedule. Also, classes will  be held on a day originally scheduled for parent-teacher conferences--those meetings will be held at night, and during a newly-scheduled early-release day.  

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Kenosha Police said it appears that a man whose body was found on an ice shelf near the Southport Beach House last Sunday may have killed himself. The 34 year-old man reportedly lived in the neighborhood. A passerby made the discover Sunday morning. 

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A Horlick High School student is facing criminal charges for having sexual contact with two students in separate hallway incidents. According to the criminal complaints, the 18 year-old male student allegedly pushed a 15 year-old female student against a wall in a stairwell last December and touched her inappropriately. For that incident, he's facing a charge of 1st Degree Sexual Assault of a Child. A similar alleged incident which occurred a year and a half ago netted the student misdemeanor charges of 4th Degree Sexual Assault and Disorderly Conduct. WGTD is not naming the student because of indications that the defendant might be suffering from some type of disability. A competency hearing has been scheduled. In the meantime, the teen is under house arrest. 

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A hitch has cropped up in efforts to redevelop one of the largest vacant buildings in downtown Kenosha. The city, which acquired the former Barden's Dept. store building two years ago in a bid to spur its redevelopment, is selling the building for a dollar to a Kenosha development company. Mike Wimmer of Witico, is promising to build spaces for a micro-brewery on the 1st floor and banquets on the 2nd. The brewery is a go, but the caterer and event planner that had been eyeing the 2nd floor of the historic building is still undecided and in negotiations. Wimmer told the city council this week that if those negotiations fall through he has a second caterer that has shown an interest. And if that option doesn't work, then he'd turn the upper floor into eight apartments or condos. 

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Kenosha's uptown neighborhood is in line for a facelift as part of the reconstruction of 22nd Ave, a major north-south thoroughfare. That portion of the street will be rebuilt in 2020, and officials are seeking input now on streetscape details such as streetlights, benches and other amenities. Two drop-in sessions have been schedule--one taking place Thursday from 11 to 7 and the other Saturday from 9 until 4. They'll take place at the Design and Input Center at 6204 22nd Ave. 

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