Crime and Court Roundup: Thirteen-year-old boy could stand trial as an adultWisconsin News
-- A judge in Sheboygan could decide today whether a 13-year-old boy is mentally competent to stand trial as an adult for the brutal slaying of his great-grandmother.
A judge in Sheboygan could decide today whether a 13-year-old boy is mentally competent to stand trial as an adult for the brutal slaying of his great-grandmother. A mental exam was ordered last month for Antonio Barbeau – and Circuit Judge Timothy Van Akkeren was expected to review the results before deciding whether the case will proceed. If Barbeau is found not to be competent, mental treatment would be ordered. The other defendant in the case, 13-year-old Nathan Paape, has not requested a mental exam. But he’ll be in court today for a status hearing on his case. A similar status review is also set for Barbeau. Both are accused of killing 78-year-old Barbara Olson at her Sheboygan Falls home on September 17th, and ransacking her house for money – which they allegedly used soon afterward to buy marijuana and pizza. Defense lawyers are expected to try and have both teens transferred to juvenile court. But that matter won’t be addressed until later.
A former Milwaukee County aide to Governor Scott Walker returns to court this morning. Tim Russell will have a final hearing on matters involving his trial that’s scheduled to begin December third. He was a deputy chief-of-staff to Walker when he was the Milwaukee County Executive. Russell is accused of embezzling 21-thousand dollars from an annual program at the County Zoo that salutes Wisconsin veterans. He’s also accused of taking money from two county supervisor campaigns he helped manage. Russell is one of five ex-Walker aides charged as the result of a John Doe investigation that’s still going on. Two of those aides were convicted after they struck plea bargains. One of them, Kelly Rindfleisch, might be called as a witness against Russell. Prosecutors have submitted a list of 42 possible witnesses – and Governor Walker is one of them. The governor escaped having to testify against Rindfleisch, when she copped a plea deal just before her trial was to take place. Walker himself has not been implicated in any wrongdoing.
A Merrill woman is due in court Monday on nine felony charges connected with a traffic crash that killed two of her friends almost five months ago. 24-year-old Ashley Baumann was charged yesterday in Lincoln County with counts that include death-and-injury by drunk driving, negligent homicide, and reckless injury. Authorities said Baumann drove a car that rolled over June seventh on a street in Merrill. Two of her passengers were killed – 33-year-old Jessica Hartwig and 31-year-old Misty Glisch, both of Merrill. A 29-year-old female passenger survived. Merrill Police Chief Ken Neff said the State Patrol reconstructed the crash scene, and it reached the same conclusion as his investigators did earlier. He submitted the evidence to prosecutors yesterday morning. Baumann is in jail pending her first court appearance.
A Door County woman will spend three years in prison for causing the death of her baby daughter by getting drunk and leaving the infant in a hot S-U-V. 34-year-old Melissa Martinez of Brussels must also spend four years under state supervision when she’s no longer behind bars. She was sentenced yesterday, after striking a plea deal in June. She pleaded no contest to causing death by child neglect. A count of homicide by intoxicated use of a motor vehicle was dropped. Prosecutors said Martinez left her eight-month-old daughter Elena in her S-U-V in her driveway last fall with the engine running and the heat turned to “high.” The mother was drinking in the hours before her baby was found dead – and four hours after her arrest, her blood alcohol level was still at point-20. Since then, Martinez has been getting rehabilitation for alcohol abuse – and she pleaded for a lighter sentence because of it. But Judge Todd Ehlers told Martinez that her child is dead because of quote, “your decision to drink.”
A drunk driver who was being chased by Milwaukee Police when he killed two pedestrians will spend 17 years in prison. 41-year-old Martin Rodriguez was sentenced yesterday, and he’ll spend 10 years under extended supervision when he’s no longer locked up. Prosecutors said Rodriguez was fleeing officers in his pick-up truck last November when he hit a woman and her son. 49-year-old Frances Pizarro died at the scene, and 20-year-old Ed Lindsey died 10 days later. After the crash, police said Rodriguez abandoned his truck and jumped into the Milwaukee River – where he was pulled out and arrested. He told officers he did not remember hitting the victims. His blood alcohol level at the time was point-206 – over two-and-a-half times the legal limit for driving. Rodriguez pleaded guilty in August to two counts of O-W-I homicide.