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News from around Wisconsin (10:33 p.m. 11/16/09)

Packers save season with Cowboys win

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — In a miserable tailspin one week, solid playoff contenders the next.

That’s life in the NFL for the Green Bay Packers, who might have saved their season with Sunday’s 17-7 victory over the Dallas Cowboys.

After snapping a two-game losing streak, the Packers (5-4) were feeling better about themselves Monday. But they know one big win won’t mean much if they take a step backward in either of the two winnable games they’ll play in an upcoming five-day stretch, home against San Francisco on Sunday and at Detroit on Thanksgiving.

“We had a very positive experience yesterday as a team,” Packers coach Mike McCarthy said. “It’s well-documented what’s gone on the last two weeks. We were able to learn from that, carry it forward to our game yesterday, and we need to take that forward to San Francisco.”

And they have reinforcements on the way: McCarthy said outside linebacker Aaron Kampman, tight end Jermichael Finley and inside linebacker Brandon Chillar are expected to return from injuries this week.

Kampman is recovering from a concussion and sat out Sunday’s game. Finley, a key cog in the Packers’ passing game, has missed three games with a knee sprain. And Chillar, who missed last week’s loss at Tampa Bay because of a broken hand, didn’t play against the Cowboys, either.

While most of the injury news is good, the Packers do have some nagging issues.

Wisconsin Democrats support medical marijuana

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Legalizing medical marijuana will ease the cancer patients’ pain and help others who are suffering, supporters of legalization argued Monday.

Two Democratic state lawmakers, advocates and those fighting chronic diseases said at a news conference there is momentum nationwide to decriminalize the use of marijuana for medical reasons.

They pointed to Gov. Jim Doyle’s comments last month in support of legalizing medical marijuana for people who have a doctor’s prescription. Also, the American Medical Association called last week for a federal review of marijuana’s status as a controlled substance to make it easier to do research that could lead to development of marijuana-based medicines.

Everyone knows someone who would benefit if the law were changed, said Jacki Rickert, founder of “Is My Medicine Legal Yet?” She suffers from Ehlers-Danlos syndrome and reflexive sympathetic dystrophy, bone and joint diseases that limit movement and lead to painful muscle spasms. Marijuana eases the pain, she said.

Rickert, 58, has lobbied more than a decade to legalize medical marijuana in Wisconsin. She was arrested in 2000 when Mondovi police raided her home and confiscated marijuana. The district attorney later declined to press charges.

“We’re not criminals, we’re just people trying to get on with our lives,” said Gary Storck, who said he starting using marijuana in 1972 to treat his glaucoma and arthritis.

A similar bill was introduced in the Legislature in 2002 but did not pass.

Body of 14-year-old boy found in vehicle

GERMANTOWN, Wis. (AP) — The body of a 14-year-old boy was found in a vehicle in the parking lot of a suburban Milwaukee Wal-mart.

Police say the boy’s 37-year-old stepfather is being held on suspicion of murdering Cody Reetz, an eighth-grader at John Long Middle School in Grafton.

Germantown Police Chief Peter Hoell says the stepfather went to the Washington County Sheriff’s Department Sunday night and surrendered. The sheriff’s department contacted Germantown police, who located the boy’s body.

Police haven’t said how the boy died.

Information from: Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, http://www.jsonline.com

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