East's Wheeler's free throws lead to upset of Shorewood

Feb. 25, 2014 10:23 p.m. | Wauwatosa East senior wing Sean Wheeler stood on the free throw line at Shorewood with 2.6 seconds left holding the Red Raiders' chances to advance in the playoffs, as well as the basketball, in his hands.

With Tosa East trailing in a hard-fought barnburner, 49-48, Wheeler had been fouled driving to the basket. He calmly sank two free throws and gave the Red Raiders a 50-49 upset win over Shorewood in the first round of the WIAA Division 1 playoffs.

Suddenly hot Tosa East won its fourth straight game to improve its record to 9-14. The Red Raiders now play at second-seed Whitefish Bay on Friday.

The Red Raiders led 13-11 after one quarter and then held the Greyhounds to one basket in the second quarter to take a 21-13 halftime lead.

Both offenses showed up in the second half, however, as Shorewood outscored Tosa East, 36-29, taking the game down to the wire.

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Wauwatosa West 'We the People' team making another run in national competition

Feb. 25, 2014 9:08 a.m. | Wauwatosa West social studies teacher Chad Mateske and his “We the People” team made it a perfect seven out of seven last month when they again qualified for a national constitutional convention held in the Washington D.C. area this April.

They have done so every year of their existence.

“We’ve been quite fortunate,” Mateske said.

“We the People” is a state-wide competition that’s held in conjunction with the American Public Policy Special Emphasis. Under Mateske’s tutelage, third-year high school students at Wauwatosa West work year-round researching constitutional questions in American government and civics. During competition, panels of constitutional experts – usually lawyers and professors – quiz teams of students on their knowledge and require quick and critical answers.

“My daughter has really come out of her shell,” said Mary Ann Panella-Best, a “We the People” parent. “I’ve seen her mature, manage her time and grow in leadership development. Meeting up with this group is the best thing that’s happened to her.”

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Menomonee River Parkway segment closed to through traffic

Feb. 24, 2014 9:53 a.m. | Menomonee River Parkway in Wauwatosa closed to through traffic late last week from Hoyt Park Drive to Church Street.

Extensive potholes and crumbling of the pavements were causing drivers to swerve and divert into the oncoming lane, said Jill Organ, assistant chief of planning for Milwaukee County.

Cold weather has prevented the necessary repairs, as the asphalt mix required does not adhere in low temperatures, she said. Barricades have been erected at Church, Hoyt Park Drive and the north end of the Charles Hart Parkway, although homes within those boundaries are accessible.

Salmon's 31 sparks Raiders past Spartans, 50-34

Feb. 21, 2014 10:16 p.m. | Senior Katie Salmon scored 31 points to spark Wauwatosa East past Brookfield East, 50-34, on Friday at Tosa East in a Greater Metro Conference game one day before seeding for the post-season.

The win game the Red Raiders (11-9 overall) a 5-8 GMC record, while the Spartans (9-12) fell to 8-5 in league play.

After an ugly first quarter that saw Tosa East lead, 4-1, the Raiders woke up behind Salmon's 15 points and took a 22-3 lead into intermission. Brookfield East outscored Tosa East, 31-28, in the second half, but it was way too late for the Spartans, who continue to show  Jekyll-Hyde personality.

Tosa East led 35-19 going into the final period, as Salmon had 9 of her team's 13 third-period points.

Salmon finished with 31 points on 13 field goals and 5-for-6 from the free throw line. Sophomores Bailey Berlin with 11 and Maya Walls with 8 were the only Raiders to score.

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Jury fails to reach verdict in firearm silencer case for gun collector

Feb. 20, 2014 8:22 p.m. | A jury spent more than five hours Thursday deciding whether a lawyer and gun collector committed a crime when he bought a "hit man's gun" with an illegal silencer.

But jurors couldn't reach a verdict and will continue deliberating Friday.

Thomas Michael Barrett, 54, a Wauwatosa lawyer, was arrested in August 2011 during a reverse sting outside Mayfair Mall.

Police say he paid an informant $400 for two stolen guns and a silencer, with the transaction recorded by detectives. Barrett was charged with possessing a firearm silencer, a felony punishable by up to three years in prison.

Barrett has put up an energetic, sustained defense with help from a series of attorneys. At one point, he argued the state's law that sharply restricts silencers amounts to an unconstitutional infringement of the Second Amendment right to bear arms.

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Lawyer testifies why he bought silencer during reverse sting

Feb. 20, 2014 12:51 p.m. | A Wauwatosa lawyer tried to explain to a jury Wednesday why he purchased a "hitman's gun" with a "highly, highly, highly illegal" silencer from a police informant at a mall parking lot.

Thomas Michael Barrett, 54, was arrested  in August 2011 during a reverse sting outside Mayfair Mall. Police say he paid an informant $400 for two stolen guns and a silencer. The transaction was recorded by detectives.  Barrett was charged with possessing a firearm silencer, a felony punishable by up to three years in prison.

Barrett has put up an energetic, sustained defense with help from a series of attorneys. At one point, he argued the state's law that sharply restricts silencers amounts to an unconstitutional infringement of the Second Amendment right to bear arms.

Wearing a  color block, blue heather sweater,  Barrett took the witness stand in his own defense Wednesday. He told jurors a former client had told him about a friend who might have some pistols to sell. Barrett said he's been a gun enthusiast since he was a boy.  (After his arrest, detectives seized more than two dozen guns from Barrett's home, all of which he legally owned).

The seller was Michael Bond, a man with a long criminal record who was federally indicted months before the gun deal with leading a major marijuana distribution ring in Milwaukee. He was looking to help authorities, and earn a break at his sentencing.

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Eisenhower beats Tosa West, stays tied for first

Feb. 14, 2014 10:15 p.m. | New Berlin Eisenhower snapped a 2-game losing streak, beating Wauwatosa West, 70-60, thanks to a fourth quarter rally, at Ike on Friday.

Leading 49-47 going into the fourth quarter, Tosa West couldn't hit a basket and the Trojans couldn't stop the Lions, who opened with an 8-0 run. Brett Uelner scored on a drive, Nick Ganzke on a fastbreak and then Reed Timmer scored on an in-bounds play and two free throws for a 57-47 lead and the Trojans never recovered.

Timmer was pretty much guarded 1-on-1 and he finished with 28 points, which included 14-for-15 from the free throw line, including 10-for-11 in the fourth quarter as the officials turned the game into a free throw contest.

When Timmer, Ike's all-time leading scorer, scored on a drive with 6:50 in the first quarter, it was his 2,000th career point.

Uelner added 17 points and Jack Sirek tossed in 10, including two 3-pointers to give the Lions some balance.

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Whole Foods to open Mayfair Collection store in 2016

Feb. 12, 2014 3:44 p.m. | Whole Foods Market Inc. will open a store at the new Mayfair Collection mixed-use development in Wauwatosa in 2016, it announced Wednesday.

The 45,150-square-foot supermarket, with a focus on organic and natural foods, will be housed in converted warehouse space at the northeast corner of W. Burleigh and N. 112th streets. Whole Foods will anchor the second phase of the Mayfair Collection, which is just east of Highway 45.

It will be the second area store for Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods. The retailer opened a supermarket on Milwaukee's east side, at 2305 N. Prospect Ave., in 2006.

"Wauwatosa is not only a dynamic and energetic community, but also one with a strong passion for natural and organic foods," said Michael Bashaw, Whole Foods Midwest regional president, in a statement. "We are delighted to join this community and support the wonderful people who live in it."

Construction will begin this spring. It typically takes up to 18 months to open a new store, said Allison Phelps, a Whole Foods public relations specialist.

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Children's Theatre to present 'Comic Juggler' starting Feb. 15

Feb. 12, 2014 11:15 a.m. | Wacky shows and comedy will permeate the Children's Theatre of Wauwatosa's presentation of the "Comic Juggler."

The show is scheduled to be held at Wauwatosa West High School, 11400 W. Center St., at 2 p.m. Feb. 15 and at Wauwatosa East High School, 7500 Milwaukee Ave., at 2 p.m. Feb. 22.

Steve Russell, of G.L. Berg Entertainment, will present the show and audience participation is encouraged.

The box office and auditoriums will open at 1:30 p.m. for each performance and tickets will cost $5. For more information, contact Lynn Leider at (414) 527-0198.

Tosa retail development seeks MEDC loan

Feb. 11, 2014 7:00 a.m. | A development group that's renovating a Wauwatosa retail building is seeking a loan from a local nonprofit business lender.

6505-6519 West North Avenue LLC, led by developer Joshua Jeffers, is seeking a $250,000 loan from Milwaukee Economic Development Corp. to help finance the $900,000 project. Jeffers is remodeling the 6,300-square-foot building at 6505-6519 W. North Ave.

About half of that space will house a second location for Hue Vietnamese Restaurant, which is to open this spring, while Rosencutter UItra Fitness and Performance opened its second location at the building in January. The building also houses East Tosa Guitars.

The primary lender for the development is Grafton-based Cornerstone Community Bank. Jeffers said other financing includes a $90,000 forgivable loan through a federal grant provided by the City of Wauwatosa, and state and federal historic preservation tax credits totaling around $150,000.

The building's current businesses have four full-time jobs and one part-time job, with the restaurant expected to create 17 full-time jobs, according to MEDC. Its Loan and Finance Committee will consider the loan at its Tuesday meeting. 

Rohde's 28 leads Central past Tosa East girls

Feb. 07, 2014 9:39 p.m. | Senior guard Lydia Rohde helped Brookfield Central snap a 2-game losing streak and beat Wauwatosa East, 60-31, on Friday at Tosa East.

Rohde scored 28 points and didn't play most of the fourth quarter and she hit 7 3-pointers in the process, breaking the single game record she shared with Debbie Entzminger (6).

Central led 21-9 after one quarter as Rohde had 13 points and led 33-15 at half as Rohde had 19. Katie Salmon had 20 points, including all eight of Tosa East's points in the fourth quarter.

Central is now 6-3 in the Greater Metro and 13-3 overall. East is 3-7 and 8-3 respectively.

The Lancers had lost to Sussex Hamilton and Brookfield East their last two times out.

Wauwatosa police arrest man in Tri City National Bank robbery

Feb. 07, 2014 9:51 a.m. | Wauwatosa police have made an arrest in relation to Thursday's armed robbery of the Tri City National Bank on Mayfair Road, the police department said in a release Friday.

The suspect had walked into the bank inside Pick 'n Save at 1717 N. Mayfair Road about 11 a.m., placed a box in a teller window that he said was a bomb and demanded money.

The arrest came through following up on leads that included numerous tips from citizens. The investigation is ongoing, but police say they're confident they've found the perpetrator.

Man claiming to have bomb robs Tri City Bank in Wauwatosa

Feb. 07, 2014 12:41 a.m. | A man claiming to have a bomb robbed the Tri City Bank inside a Pick 'n Save store in Wauwatosa on Thursday, police said.

The man walked into the store at 1717 N. Mayfair Road about 11 a.m., placed a box in a teller window, said it was a bomb and demanded money, according to a news release from Wauwatosa police.

After obtaining the money, he fled and the Milwaukee County bomb squad was called to the bank.

The box was determined not to be dangerous.

Anyone with information on the robbery is asked to call Wauwatosa Detective Lt. James Mastrocola at (414) 471-8430.

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Best Summer Ever


We've made it easy for you to get out and go this summer. From hitting the trails for a bike ride or walk, to where to find beer gardens in the area, to the best places to swim in Waukesha County to the best summer drinks and summer reads, check out our 2016 summer guide.



Hidden Tosa


"Hidden Tosa" is a semi-regular feature where our Wauwatosa reporter explores the closed down and closed off parts of Wauwatosa.