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‘Germaphobe’ suspected of stealing from cars

A man questioned about thefts from cars said he was wearing latex gloves because he’s a “germaphobe,” according to a release from Madison police.

Officers were called to Chamberlain Avenue before 4 a.m. Monday when a resident heard a car alarm and spotted someone walking down the street with a flashlight trying car doors.

Police said a man was spotted near Chestnut Street and Kendall Avenue, and when officers approached, he started to remove latex gloves he was wearing.

Officers said that near the man they found a backpack containing possible stolen items and tools for breaking and entering automobiles.

Alexander Kanatzids, 20, of Madison, was arrested on suspicion of possession of burglary tools and felony bail jumping.

Since January, there have been dozens upon dozens of thefts from vehicles in the Regent, Dudgeon Monroe and Vilas neighborhoods, according to police. Most of these crimes were the result of "unlocked" vehicles.

Tony Franks closes its doors after 86 years in business

After nearly a century of business, a local tavern had to shut its doors.

Tony Frank’s Tavern was open for 86 years, but owner Jim Frank said money problems mostly caused by nearby construction forced him to close. He tried to keep his business alive by selling his home and car, but he could no longer keep the business open.

“We have a great clientele as it is. It's just I accumulated so much debt from this project out here that I can’t carry forward anymore,” he said.

The bar has been a big part of Frank’s life for a long time.

“I started working here really in eighth grade cleaning the bar before school. I'd have a couple of cheeseburgers at the end of my shift and a couple of Blatz's beers and go on to eighth grade,” he said.

Frank said his customers are also affected by the closure.

“They're sad,” he said. “They’re hoping I can implement my new business plan and go forward from there.”

Police: Man seen jumping on car hood taken to hospital

A man seen jumping on the hood of a car on Madison's west side Monday during rush hour traffic was later taken to the hospital, police said.

Madison police responded to a report of a man making threatening statements at the Meadowood Neighborhood Center on Raymond Road at 4:19 p.m. Police said a man was screaming, making threatening statements and pounding his fists on a desk.

There were many teens in the area at the time, and as police arrived, the suspect took off running into traffic on Raymond Road, according to the report. Many drivers stopped to avoid hitting the 34-year-old.

He jumped up and down on the hood and roof of one occupied car, and attempted to do the same on another, but ended up rolling off of the hood.

Man leads officers on vehicle, foot pursuit in west Madison area

A man was arrested after a report of a person with a gun on Madison's west side early Wednesday, but no firearm was recovered, police said.

Madison police said officers responded to a report of a man with a gun on Heritage Circle at 12:36 a.m. Police said the original call was regarding a disturbance between 42-year-old Akeem O. Musa, of Madison, and people he knows in that area.

Musa reportedly fled as police arrived. A vehicle was found abandoned and running on Euclid Avenue, about 2 1/2 miles north of Heritage Circle. There was a handgun holster in the car, but no firearm was found.

Musa was taken into custody in the backyard of a home in the 3900 block of Birch Avenue, police said. He denied having a gun.

Musa was arrested on suspicion of disorderly conduct, criminal damage to property, resisting an officer and a parole violation, according to the report.

New apartment complex approved over resident objections

Objections from area residents wasn't enough for the Madison City Council to stop a proposed apartment complex from coming to the city's near south side.

The council approved a new 173-unit building near the intersection of Park Street and Fish Hatchery Road early Wednesday morning.

Some residents in the area, known as the Bay Creek neighborhood, say the increased traffic and parking associated with a big apartment complex could pose problems.

But some business owners in the area support the project. And Alder Sara Eskrich, who represents the area, said the proposed five-story building fits the neighborhood well, and complaints by the community are being heeded.

Construction is expected to start this fall.

Police arrest man involved in drug investigation during traffic stop

A man who police believe recently moved to Madison from Illinois faces multiple drug charges in connection with a drug investigation and search warrant executed at his residence, Madison police said.

Members of the Dane County Narcotics Task Force made a high-risk traffic stop on the city’s west side Monday afternoon, according to the release. As a result, 38-year-old Anthony Webber was taken into custody.

After Webber was arrested, Madison SWAT executed a search warrant Monday night at his home in the 2400 block of Atwood Avenue, police said.

Investigators seized 35.5 grams of cocaine base, a digital scale, drug packaging materials and more than $3,500, according to the release.

Webber has an extensive criminal history in Illinois.

He faces tentative charges of manufacturing/delivering cocaine, possession with intent to deliver cocaine base and maintaining a drug dwelling.

Toxic algae closes 3 Madison beaches

Toxic blue-green algae prompted Madison and Dane County Public Health officials to close James Madison, Tenny and Warner beaches, all along Lake Mendota, Monday.

"While we see this algae in the lake every year, it's unusually abundant this year," Center for Limnology Director Steve Carpenter said. "So we are seeing an unusual, a somewhat unusual event this year."

Health officials said the algae has to be considered contaminated because it's likely phosphate pollution coming from farm manure and soil runoff.

"Now with this bloom under way, the main thing is for people to be careful about their health," Carpenter said. "Don't let your pets drink the stuff, if you happen to come in contact with the lake wash your hands."

Carpenter said compounding the problem is what is being called an invasive species killing most of the tiny algae-eating water fleas. So there's virtually nothing on the water to naturally bring the algae under control.