Today (Friday) is day five in a Menominee County murder trial. 49-year-old Gregory S. Ihander of Menominee Township faces a count of Open Murder for the September 2015 stabbing death of Jolene Eichhorn. In Thursday’s court proceedings the jurors got to hear the testimony of Officer Darren Kudwa of the Menominee County Sheriff’s Department and the role he played in searching Ihander’s home on the ninth of September. Defense Attorney Karen Groenhout asks Officer Kudwa why he thought he could search Ihander’s home. Groenhout went on to ask Kudwa as to why he didn’t document his participation in searching Ihander’s home in his police report. Thursday jurors also heard testimony from various experts and forensic scientists from the Michigan State Crime Lab. Ihander’s trial is scheduled to run through next week Friday (Feb 24).
A jury trial is now scheduled for a Marinette County man charged with dealing heroin. 32-year old Jeffrey R. Parnitzke of Wausaukee is pleading not guilty to three counts of Manufacturing and Delivery of Heroin and one count of Maintaining a Drug Trafficking Place. Parnitzke was allegedly caught selling the heroin from his Wausaukee home last winter. His jury trial is set to begin April 18th in Marinette County Court, and he has a pre-trial conference scheduled for March 9th.
There’s new leadership for the proposed Menominee County mine. Thursday, Aquila Resources announced Bill Matheson has been named as Director of Construction. Matheson is a mining executive with more than 30 years of operations and project management experience, according to Aquila Resources. Matheson will oversee the development and construction of the Back Forty Project, the gold and zinc mine proposed along the Menominee River west of Stephenson.
Marinette residents are asked to be aware of the new polling location for the upcoming election. The Wisconsin Spring Primary Election will be held next week Tuesday at the NWTC Job Center in Marinette with all eight wards using this location. Marinette City Clerk, Lana Bero says there are some changes for this election. Bero says this is open to all voters and if you’re not registered to vote there are various ways you can. Currently there is only one race on the ballot for the Wisconsin Spring Primary Election and that is for the Superintendent of Public Instruction. The NWTC polling location will be open beginning at 7am until 8pm Tuesday, February 21st. You are reminded to follow the signs for parking due to the construction at the Campus.
A candlelight ski and hike is being held in Marinette County this weekend. The fun-filled evening of candlelit skiing and hiking will be held at Governor Thompson State Park northwest of Crivitz this Saturday from 6-9 PM. Warming fires and hot chocolate will be provided to everyone at the Woods Lake Shelter. Vehicle admission is required and can be purchased at the park office.
Menominee Area Public Schools remind that the district’s offices and buildings will be closed next week Monday for Mid-Winter Break. The district office will be open from 9 AM-3 PM. All classes and offices resume their normal hours on Tuesday.
Menominee High School is establishing an Athletic Hall of Fame. Thursday...the Menominee School Board approved the creation of the Athletic Hall of Fame at Menominee High. Former Menominee teacher John Wills brought the idea to the board of education. Wills says the Hall of Fame will have to get a board of directors up and running, and then they’ll be looking for nominations for induction. Wills says he hopes the Menominee High School Athletic Hall of Fame could have its first induction ceremony in the spring of 2018.
Testimony continues in a Menominee County murder trial. 49-year old Gregory S. Ihander of Menominee Township faces a count of Open Murder for the 2015 stabbing death of Jolene Eichhorn. Wednesday’s court proceedings included forensic evidence from the Michigan State Crime Lab. Jurors were able to see the blood-stained jeans Eichhorn was wearing when she was found in the trunk of her car as well as photos from the first crime scene at the Cedar River State Harbor where Eichhorn’s body and vehicle were found. Prosecutors also presented photos from the second crime scene at Ihander’s residence where Eichhorn’s blood spatter was allegedly found throughout the garage and kitchen. Ihander’s trial is scheduled to run through next week Friday (Feb. 24).
A Milwaukee man faces the possibility of prison following his conviction on a heroin-dealing charge in Marinette County. 37-year old Mequon T. Sanders had pleaded guilty to a county of Manufacturing and Delivery of Heroin in Marinette County Court. He was implicated in the sale of heroin during a drug investigation in Marinette last August. Mequon’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for April 14th.
Reorganizing the Menominee County Courthouse. Menominee County recently purchased a neighboring building at 1000 9th Street to help address the growing space needs at the courthouse. Now, the county has approved moving some of the courthouse offices over to that new building. At this week’s county board meeting, Commissioner John Nelson stated he was adamantly opposed to moving the Veterans’ Service Office to the new building. Commissioner William Cech did not want to move the County Administrator’s Office out of the courthouse just so the Veteran’s Service Office could stay. In the end, it was decided the Veteran’s Service Office would remain in the Menominee County Courthouse, and there was no action yet on the potential move for the Administrator’s Office. The Probation/Parole Officers and Sheriff’s Investigators will be the first to move to the newly-purchased building, while the Equalization Department, and Juvenile Probation Officer will relocate within the courthouse.
Unseasonably warm weather is in the forecast for this weekend. That’s leading to road restrictions in Menominee County. Effective at 7 AM this Friday, temporary weight restrictions will be imposed and enforced on all roads in Menominee County except for those designated as all season until further notice.
Residents will have the opportunity to meet Michigan State Representative Beau LaFave this Saturday at two Menominee County coffee houses. The first will be held at Laurie’s Wildflower Café’ and Bagel Shoppe in Menominee beginning at 10:30 am. The second will be held at 2 pm at the Farm House Restaurant in Stephenson. LaFave, who lives in Iron Mountain, represents Delta, Dickinson, and Menominee Counties in the Michigan State House.