Ex-cop pleads not guilty in slaying

KENOSHA, Wis. (AP) – A former police officer accused of killing two women and hiding their remains in a pair of suitcases has pleaded not guilty in the death of one.

Steven Zelich pleaded not guilty Monday to charges of first-degree homicide and hiding a corpse in the death of Jenny Gamez, of Cottage Grove, Oregon.

A criminal complaint says the 52-year-old former West Allis officer killed the 19-year-old college student during a sexual choking game at a Kenosha hotel and then hid her body in his home and car for months before dumping it along a rural highway in early June.

Zelich also is a suspect in the death of a Farmington, Minn., woman.

Project helps New Ulm live healthier

NEW ULM (AP) – A Minnesota community is celebrating national recognition of its 10-year effort to eliminate heart attacks.

The Heart of New Ulm Project won a 2014 Nova Award from the American Hospital Association last month, Minnesota Public Radio News reported. Residents of New Ulm will celebrate the achievement and the project’s sixth year today.

Allina Health, the Minneapolis Heart Institute Foundation and the community of New Ulm collaborated on the project, which aims to provide support and ideas to people who want to get healthy.

Denise Leitz, 56, of New Ulm decided to participate when her weight exceeded 300 pounds. She said her clothes wouldn’t fit and she experienced constant pain.

Leitz said she has lost 60 pounds in the past year after she changed her diet and began exercising regularly.