WisconsinWeekly: A Milwaukee girl decried gun violence — then she was killed by gunfire

Milwaukee teen killed, hate complaints up in Baraboo and nationwide, Foxconn got deal sweeter than Amazon, ‘very dark’ mood in town where 13-year-old disappeared, city elections chief wants apology

Of note: This week we feature the tragic story of Sandra Parks, a Milwaukee eighth grader who had written poignantly of gun violence in her neighborhood two years before she herself became a victim. Sandra, 13, was killed Monday after gunshots pierced the window of her bedroom. In her award-winning essay, Sandra, then a sixth grader, had written about a “state of chaos” in her community. She called on Milwaukeeans to be and do better: “We shall overcome has been lost in the lie of who we have become.” 

WisconsinWeekly is produced by Dee and Andy Hall, a couple who founded the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism. Dee is the managing editor and Andy is the executive director.

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‘We are in a state of chaos’: Milwaukee girl cut down by gunfire wrote of senseless violence

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel — November 20, 2018

Thirteen year-old Sandra Parks is the seventh Milwaukee Public Schools student killed in a homicide this year, and the Journal Sentinel reports that she is at least the fifth Milwaukee child killed by gunfire inside a home. Mayor Tom Barrett called the gun violence in cities including Milwaukee “slow-motion mass murders,” in contrast to the “huge tragedies that capture the nation’s attention in nightclubs, in churches.” He blamed government leaders’ failure to pass gun control legislation for both types of tragedies. Previously from WCIJ in the Precious Lives series: Bullets exacted terrible toll on children, African-Americans

Before Nazi salute picture, Baraboo schools saw a rise in racial complaints

Appleton Post-Crescent — November 20, 2018

Public records obtained by USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin show the Baraboo School District experienced a sharp rise in complaints of racial harassment two years before the controversial prom photo was taken. While only three such complaints were logged in the previous two years combined, 11 were logged in the 2016-17 school year. Experts say hate incidents are on the rise nationally, but the exact growth is hard to measure because agencies are not required to report such incidents to the FBI. Previously from WCIJ: Across Wisconsin, recent rises in hate, bias incidents spark concern

Wisconsin offered Foxconn more than Virginia and New York did for Amazon

Washington Post — November 15, 2018

A comparison of incentives packages shows Wisconsin offered Foxconn more than the total amount that New York, Virginia and Tennessee combined had offered Amazon to become hosts to the next company headquarters. That project promises more jobs and higher average salaries than the Taiwanese manufacturer promised Wisconsin, though Foxconn may provide more entry-level jobs. “The Foxconn deal is one of the all-time historically bad tax giveaways by any state,” said University of Georgia economics professor Jeffrey Dorfman, “whereas the Amazon deals look more like an average bad tax giveaway to a big business.”

A month after Jayme Closs vanished, the feeling in her hometown is ‘very dark’

Minneapolis Star Tribune — November 20, 2018

In Barron, Wisconsin, no answers have emerged yet in the kidnapping of 13-year-old Jayme Closs and the murder of her parents more than a month ago. The uncertainty has left residents grieving and nervous. At least 20 officers are still working the case, but “police frankly admit that they’re stumped and desperate for clues as to who killed them and why,” reports the Star Tribune. “They have no leads, no weapon and no motive.”

Top Milwaukee election official calls on Gov. Scott Walker to apologize for accusing city of ‘incompetence’ in ballot count

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel — November 19, 2018

Neil Albrecht, executive director of the Milwaukee Election Commission, wrote a letter defending the city’s election workers whom Gov. Scott Walker had criticized when he learned that 47,000 absentee ballots had not yet been counted. Albrecht said the workers had followed current state protocols requiring that absentee ballots not be counted before Election Day. “The blame for Wisconsin’s myriad antiquated election laws that fail to address emerging election issues rests with you and the Legislature, not with the City of Milwaukee Election Commission,” Albrecht wrote.

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