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Meandering downtown donkeys promote new social app

A local social media company introduced its new app with a launch buildup featuring two donkeys meandering around Madison over the past couple of days.

Bad Donkey Social unveiled its first app, buzzMSG, Tuesday. The app lets users create and insert their own customer pictures and images inline with their text messages, according to a release.

The app was created by a small start-up comprised of people who share a desire to revolutionize mobile connectivity and strong University of Wisconsin-Madison ties, which is why the developers are inviting UW-Madison students and the Madison community to try the app first, according to the release.

?Forget the bogus ?trends start on the coasts stuff,? buzzMSG is pure Badger ingenuity,? the release said.

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Chase suspect tossed debris at police in hopes of stopping them

A man suspected of leading a police chase through Madison neighborhoods on Monday told police he and his passenger were throwing debris in hopes of stopping police.

Police said they arrested Tyler B. McIntosh, 25, of Madison, and Chelsea M. Schwaegerl, 23, after the high-speed pursuit involving University of Wisconsin and Madison police Monday afternoon.

Police said McIntosh took his van over a curb and onto the Lake Shore Path near campus during the pursuit.

Dane County dispatchers said police started pursuing the vehicle around 3:30 p.m. and ended the pursuit just before 4 p.m. Police suspected the driver was wanted on an outstanding felony warrant.

The vehicle was originally found by police in the area of the 2500 block of Chamberlin Avenue, and the pursuit continued for several minutes through the near west and southwest sides of Madison, officials said.

Madison Water Utility to start flushing water mains this week

Madison Water Utility crews will be flushing water mains this week, according to a release.

Every year during the warm weather months, MWU crews complete maintenance work on the city?s water mains using a technique known as unidirectional flushing, officials said. The aggressive flushing technique moves water at a high velocity through water mains and fire hydrants to clear out sediment from naturally-occurring minerals.

Clean pipes are important for a clean, healthy water supply, and that?s why MWU works to maintain the pipes with this flushing process, according to the release.

Madison property values show first increase in recent years

Increasing Madison property values for both commercial and residential properties are a sign of an economic recovery, according to city officials.

The city announced Friday a 3.2 percent increase for the average residential property and 4 percent increase for commercial properties. The overall increase is 3.5 percent.

Property assessments are being mailed to property owners on Friday.

City officials said properties appreciated in value $345 million during 2013 compared to a $31 million drop during 2012. In 2008-2009, property values depreciated more than $1.1 billion.

New construction in 2013 was 75 percent higher than in 2012, spreading the tax burden across more properties.

Also, the tax burden continues to shift from residential to commercial properties. It has increased from 31 percent to 35 percent since 2007.

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UW professors propose free tuition

Two University of Wisconsin-Madison professors are attempting to give their students a piece of the American dream. In a paper published this month, the model makes college accessible for those who attend public universities by lowering the total cost of tuition.

"The financial aid system just is not working out the way it was planned to. It's not good for people to work really hard and then see it not pay off. That's really disconcerting to families and it really undermines the American dream," said Sara Goldrick-Rab, co-author of the paper.

Under the proposed model, students would receive free tuition for two years and would have their books and supplies paid for completely, as well as receive a stipend to help with living expenses.

Goldrick-Rab said rerouting financial aid from private institutes to public colleges and universities could cover the cost.

Witness: Officer in ?Wrestlemania? struggle with man in street

A police officer got into a fight with a man a witness described as ?Wrestlemania? while trying to break up a fight in a street, according to a release from Madison police.

Police said the officer noticed two people fighting in the street near 437 W. Gorham St. at 2:50 a.m. on April 12 and attempted to intervene.

One man got into a fight with the officer, and the officer told Akeem Ali Wilkins, 21, of Madison, numerous times to stop resisting, according to police.

A witness stepped in to hold Wilkins while the officer placed him in handcuffs, police said.

The other man involved in the initial fight told police he was walking down the street with friends when he was thrown to the ground and ended up in a wrestling match.

Wilkins was arrested on suspicion of battery, resisting and officer an disorderly conduct.

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Police: Man causes disturbance at bar, kicks at officers

A Waunakee man struggled with staff, patrons and police during a disturbance at a downtown bar, according to Madison police.

Police were called to the Red Rock Saloon at 322 West Johnson St. at 10:38 p.m. on April 12 for a report of a disturbance.

Witnesses told police Justin L. Smith, 27, became combative with staff when he was found urinating in an outdoor patio. They said as he was escorted out of the bar, he pulled at patrons and pushed a staff member.

Bouncers said they tried to control Smith on the ground until officers arrived.

Police said Smith kicked at officers and grabbed at their equipment as they attempted to get him off the ground. They said he argued with officers and refused to sit in the squad car.

Smith was arrested on suspicion of disorderly conduct and resisting an officer.