Still no word on cause of Menomonee Falls fire
No, we have not forgotten about the fire at Latasha Jackson’s house. No, we are not burying the news or deliberately withholding information about the blaze that destroyed the $1 million mansion in Menomonee Falls, as some readers have wondered in emails.
We simply have nothing new to report at this point.
Bill Cosh, spokesman for state Fire Marshal Tina Virgil, says, “It’s an on-going investigation” and that he cannot comment further.
Sources tell the Journal Sentinel some remnants of the fire were sent to the crime lab and that investigators are awaiting the results.
As it stands, the fire has not been declared arson. Investigators won’t say whether they’ve determined the origin.
Fire destroyed the house Dec. 27 while Jackson was on out of the state on vacation.
The house was assessed at about $1.1 million and was on the market for $1.39 million.
Fire investigators ruled the house was a total loss.
Jackson’s Jaguar convertible was also destroyed in the fire as was a Chevy Camaro.
Jackson is the child-care provider who amassed nearly $3 million from the taxpayer-financed Wisconsin Shares program while regulators ignored red flags that she was scamming the system.
The Journal Sentinel published a story about her and her Milwaukee child-care business called Kiddie Springs Child Development Center on W. Lancaster Ave. near 38th St. in August.
An anti-fraud task force in Milwaukee — with members from the FBI, the U.S. attorney’s office, the district attorney’s office, Milwaukee police and sheriff’s departments and the state Department of Children and Families — is investigating Jackson and her former businesses.
Records show Jackson was likely running what police and regulators refer to as a child-care ring, employing women with many children for the main purpose of enrolling the kids in her center and collecting state subsidies. The women don’t actually show up for work and the children don’t attend.
The newspaper compiled a paper trail on Jackson tallying more than 1,800 pages, detailing how regulators repeatedly failed to take action or cut off payments despite Jackson’s extensive violations, her history of lying and even regulators’ own outright proof of fraud.
- Medical malpractice fight brewing in California
- Gwen Moore "surprised" by light punishment for botched ATF Milwaukee case
- Prisoners at Waupun allege abuse
- Newborn screening fixes gain traction in some states, hit roadblocks in others
- Guns sales are brisk; ATF inspections are not
- Story behind an investigation into Milwaukee's mental health system
- Milwaukee FBI agent who backed wounded veteran is honored
- Holder vows accountability for ATF tattooing low IQ man; But will it even be investigated?
- ATF boss, Todd Jones, to testify before Congress on storefront stings
- Top ATF official commits fraud, but with 'permission'
The latest headlines from the Watchdog team
- Watchdog Update: Todd Dyer, the ‘bring it on’ felon, indicted for 3rd time
- Daniel Bice politics chat transcript
- Daniel Bice: State Sen. Harris Dodd stands by aide with criminal past (19)
- Daniel Bice: DA hopeful downplays erotic poetry book she published in 2014 (33)
- Watchdog Report: Federal gun prosecutions fall, even as Milwaukee crime rises (16)
No Quarter Blog
Daniel Bice, the Journal Sentinel's watchdog columnist, holds politicians and the powerful accountable