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Brat Fest adds zero waste initiative to 2015 event

The 2015 Brat Fest will not only feature the traditional brats, brews and bands, but the organizers are implementing a zero waste initiative this year, according to a release.

Brat Fest organizers said they plan on improving their current recycling program and will also be composting during the event, with the goal of reducing the amount of garbage in an effort to protect the environment.

“The zero-waste movement is all about creating waste management procedures with the ultimate goal that everything be recycled, reused or composted, with as little as possible remaining for disposal, the release said.

According to the release, Brat Fest organizers are proactively working with food vendors to choose compostable supplies so that more of the trash generated will be diverted from the landfill.

There will also be volunteers to help event-goers know which containers to put their waste into, organizers said.

Man wakes to find burglar in home, police say

A downtown resident awoke to the noise of an intruder early Saturday, police said.

Madison police said officers responded to a report of a burglary in progress at 4:55 a.m. in the 400 block of West Mifflin Street. The caller was awakened by the sound of footsteps inside the residence. After determining that the noise was not being caused by any of his roommates, he called police.

The burglar fled on foot southbound toward West Washington Avenue, according to the report. The town of Madison police K-9 assisted with a track of the suspect, but the suspect was not found Saturday morning.

Police said it appeared the burglar entered the residence through an unlocked door. There wasn't any sign of forced entry.

The burglar was described as black, between 18-20 years old with dark skin. He was wearing a dark colored shirt and was carrying a backpack.

A wallet and electronics were stolen from the home, police said.

Issue with feces at City-County building continues, employees say

It's not a new sight for anyone who walks past the Madison's City-County Building, but it's one that Judicial Clerk Kelly McConnell is tired of seeing.

"I have never heard of anyone else that I know of having to work in a building where this is going on," McConnell said. "The past two years has been pretty bad as far as it goes, but I've noticed an increase of people and new people here now over the past few months."

Piles of clothes, belongings and food have been stacking up at the CCB, but McConnell said it's not only the outside of the building that's being impacted.

"They use this place as their bathroom, they use the grates outside the building as their bathroom and that's like ventilation for the building," McConnell said. "There is garbage everywhere. No one can use the benches or anything outside during the day because they are all soiled."

Dorm sexual assault suspect in custody, UWPD says

A 19-year-old was taken into custody Friday in connection with a reported sexual assault in a Madison dorm, police said.

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Police Department said Friday afternoon that Nicholas H. Ralston, of Neenah, was arrested on tentative charges of third-degree sexual assault.

UWPD said on Saturday morning, police responded to a report of a student who was sexual assaulted in the Southeast Residence Hall at about 3 a.m.

Police said the victim and the suspected attacker knew each other. Ralston is also a UW-Madison student.

UWPD spokesman Marc Lovicott said Ralston was being booked in the Dane County Jail Friday at about 3 p.m., and a booking photo was expected to be available later Friday afternoon.

Mannequin leg spotted in dumpster prompts police response

Police officers and detectives were called to a downtown dumpster Thursday after three archivists with the Wisconsin Historical Society spotted a leg.

One of the archivists noticed the leg in the dumpster while looking out a window to a loading dock as the employees were moving boxes inside a building on East Washington Avenue.

The leg and foot were sticking out from beneath a pile of refuse.

The first officer at the scene said it appeared to be a human leg, dressed in jeans and wearing wool-looking socks and a tennis shoe.

Detectives and a specially trained investigator from the Madison Police Department Forensic Services Unit also arrived and suited up in hazmat gear. An investigator carefully moved some of the cushions and discovered that the leg was attached to the body of a headless mannequin.

Former Madison police chief: 'Stop the killing'

Echoing a recent blog entry, former Madison Police chief turned Episcopal Priest David Couper made a passionate recommendation for stopping police shootings.

"The issue of race is not going to go away. We’ve got so much work to do," Couper said. "There are some specific things I think citizens can do, working with police to improve things."

During his Edgewood College "New Police for a New Era" speech, Couper emphasized the decades-old community policing philosophy he used as chief, which he now believes should be a national standard.

In what he calls a "Prescription for Police to Change," Cooper said:

$300K grant to help MMSD open 4 full-service schools

The Madison Metropolitan School District received a three-year, $300,000 grant to support community planning and implementation for four full-service schools, according to a release.

Full-service schools integrate community services into schools sties and work to connect students and families with needed services to make schools hubs of support, officials said.

"Full-service schools take our support for children and families in Madison to a new level. Many of our families still struggle with access to community services, but by integrating coordinated services where our children and families are every day, we will be better able to support families and our students," Superintendent Jennifer Cheatham said in the release. "We are thrilled that thanks to the Madison Community Foundation, we’ll be able to work together to make full service schools a reality in Madison."