STATE CRIME AND COURT ROUNDUP: 18-year-old to spend 30 days in jail for obstructing an officer
An 18-year-old woman is spending 30 days in jail, after she admitted lying to police about a threat she made at Medford High School in February. Denarah Kitzman was supposed to be sentenced July eighth, but she skipped the hearing – and she was later picked up on a warrant in Iron County, close to her new home in Ironwood Michigan. Kitzman struck a plea deal with prosecutors in which she pleaded no contest to obstructing an officer, and a disorderly conduct charge from earlier in February. Counts of battery and bail jumping were dropped. Police said Kitzman left a threatening note to students in a girls’ bathroom at Medford High. Security was beefed up the next day, and school officials gave parents the option of keeping their kids home without penalty. Almost three-fourths of the students took advantage. Kitzman was ordered to pay almost 11-hundred-50 dollars in fines and court costs. She must also write a letter of apology.
A maker of wind energy turbines in China wants a federal judge in Madison to throw out subpoenas the firm received, to answer allegations that it stole technology secrets from a Middleton firm. The Sinovel Wind Group, two of its Chinese employees, and a former supplier are all charged with conspiracy to steal trade secrets through wire fraud. An indictment announced last month alleges that software copyrighted by the American Superconductor Corporation was stolen online from one of that company’s computers in Middleton. The charges said the supplier, 40-year-old Dejan Karabasevic of Serbia, once worked for a subsidiary of American Superconductor in Austria – and his old company later learned that its wind energy software was showing up in the Chinese firm’s turbines. Media reports say the individuals connected to Sinovel probably won’t be charged, since they’re from countries which don’t have extradition agreements with the U-S.
The head of Wisconsin’s FBI office was recently transferred, as she faces possible criminal action for allegedly trying to influence an employee’s testimony in a discrimination suit. The Journal Sentinel said Teresa Carlson was re-assigned last month from the Milwaukee office to the FBI’s headquarters in Virginia, after refusing to testify in the matter. Federal Magistrate Judge Ivan Davis of Virginia sanctioned Carlson and other FBI officials yesterday for their conduct in the matter. It all started when Justin Slaby, an Army veteran from Oak Creek, claimed he was turned down for an FBI agent’s job because he had only one hand due to an Army training accident. He filed his discrimination suit last year. According to court records, Milwaukee agent Mark Crider was about to testify on Slaby’s behalf when Carlson told him it would be in Crider’s best interest to quote, “come down on the side of the government in this case.” Crider later wrote that Carlson never wanted Slaby to be an agent due to his disability. Judge Davis said it would be left to a jury to determine if Carlson tried to get Crider to commit perjury – but there was no doubt that the two had met to discuss it. Davis also ordered the FBI to pay some of Slaby’s legal fees, as his case heads to a trial on July 29th in Alexandria Virginia. The Milwaukee office would only say that Carlson is on a temporary assignment in Washington.
John Spooner could find out today whether he’ll go to prison or a mental institution, for killing his 13-year-old neighbor in Milwaukee. His sanity trial took some bizarre turns yesterday when he asked the judge to speak directly to the jury, and was turned down. Then, his lawyer said the 76-year-old Spooner was mentally unfit to continue with the trial. Judge Jeffrey Wagner ordered an impromptu mental exam. Later in the day, Wagner ruled that Spooner was competent enough for the trial to proceed – and against the advice of his legal team, the defendant testified on his own behalf. Spooner said quote, “something snapped” just before he shot-and-killed Darius Simmons in May of last year. He said he would have also shot Simmons’ brother had his gun not jammed. Spooner believed the victim stole four of his guns a short time before the murder. The defendant called the shooting “justice,” not “revenge.” Spooner said he wanted the guns back, because they were a big part of his life. On Wednesday, he was convicted of first-degree intentional homicide. A court-appointed psychiatrist is expected to be the trial’s final witness today. Closing arguments and jury deliberations will follow. Only 10 of the 12 jurors need to agree that Spooner was insane for him to get a mental commitment instead of prison.
A Boy Scout leader from suburban Chicago is free on bond, after he allegedly molested a scout at a camp in south central Wisconsin. 54-year-old Jeffrey Borneman appeared yesterday in Marquette County Circuit Court on a felony charge of second-degree child sexual assault. Prosecutors said he assaulted a child under 16 on July fifth at Camp Freeland Leslie near Oxford. Borneman lives in Glen Ellyn Illinois. He posted a five-thousand-dollar cash bond after yesterday’s appearance. Borneman is due back in court September sixth, when a judge will decide if there’s enough evidence to order a trial.