2019 WI Deaths

2019 Domestic Violence-Related Deaths in Wisconsin

As of March 18th,  18 Wisconsin lives have been lost to domestic violence homicide in 2019. That’s one person killed every 4.2 days.  If that pattern continues, 86 lives will be lost this year. 11% of victims were age 18 or under.

January 6th, 2019:  Rochelle Scott, Age 58 – Delevan

Obituary

A man is facing possible homicide charges in the alleged stabbing death of his wife, who was found dead Jan. 6 in the couple’s home.

Rochelle R. Scott, 58, was found dead just after 10:30 a.m. with “multiple stab wounds” in her home at 4003 S. Channel Drive, police said.

Walworth County Circuit Court records show that police reported finding a bloody butcher knife in the kitchen sink.

According to the the town’s police department, the victim’s husband, Robert J. Scott, 56, was taken into custody on suspicion of first-degree intentional homicide.

Robert Scott was being held at the Walworth County Jail on $1 million bond.

A news release issued by the department states that a person had called the police department stating that “he had stabbed his wife.” Police reported finding Rochelle Scott dead inside on a bed inside the home, and her husband standing in the driveway outside the home with blood on his clothing.

Police reported that Rochelle Scott had suffered numerous stab wounds in the chest.

According to an affidavit filed in court, Robert Scott directed police inside the home to his wife’s body, telling officers, “She’s already gone, guys.”

The home is located northeast of the corner of County Road O and South Shore Drive, near the southern tip of Delavan Lake.

Walworth County court records show that Rochelle Scott filed for divorce on Dec. 20.

Delavan Town Chairman Ryan Simons said the Walworth County town of about 5,200 people rarely experiences such violent crime as is alleged in Rochelle Scott’s death.

“This is something that is quite shocking,” he said.

Simons also said he has met both Rochelle Scott and her husband, but he referred questions about the couple to police investigators.

The Walworth County district attorney’s office has not issued any charges in the case.

 

January 10th, 2019:  Timothy Theis, Age 37 – West Allis

Obituary

West Allis police said Jacob Paradinovich, 30, was charged on Monday, Jan. 14 by the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office in connection with the stabbing death of Timothy Theis on Jan. 10. Bond was set for Paradinovich at $25,000.

He faces a charge of second degree reckless homicide, use of a dangerous weapon.

According to West Allis police, Paradinovich and Theis were traveling together in a vehicle near 80th and National on Thursday, Jan. 10 when they were involved in an altercation. Officials said Paradinovich pulled the vehicle over — and both men stepped out of the vehicle. During that physical altercation, officials said Paradinovich “armed himself with a knife and stabbed (Theis) in the head.”

According to a criminal complaint, Paradinovich gave Theis a ride home and became involved in an argument while inside the car. When the men arrived at Theis’ apartment, Paradinovich says Theis began to kick his car door. Paradinovich then got out of the car and began arguing with Theis. Paradinovich said that during the argument, Theis punched him, which led Paradinovich to pull out his knife. Paradinovich said that he was aiming for the tendons of the shoulder in order to disable Theis’ arm, but he had missed his target and accidentally struck Theis in the head.

Paradinovich called 911 and attempted to help Theis prior to first responders arriving on the scene, officials said. Theis later died from his injuries.

In a statement, Paradinovich acknowledged that Theis was unarmed throughout the entire incident. He also said he knew Theis was drunk. The criminal complaint says Paradinovich and Theis had been in a relationship in the past, but Paradinovich ended the relationship after he moved out of state. Paradinovich saw Theis multiple times after moving back to Milwaukee.

Paradinovich made his initial appearance in court on Tuesday, Jan. 15. Probable cause was found for further proceedings, and cash bond was set at $25,000. A preliminary hearing was scheduled for Jan. 24.

January 13th, 2019: Shelley M. Erickson, Age 63 – Pembine

Obituary

Shelley’s life on earth was taken from all of us too soon as a result of Domestic Violence. We were not able to help her but wish to prevent other families from this. Wisconsin Coalition Against Domestic Violence Office: (608) 255-0539; Website: endabusewi.org; National Domestic Violence: 1-800-799-7233

The Marinette County Sheriff’s Office has identified a woman found shot to death in her Town of Pembine home as Shelley M. Erickson-Rogge.

The 63-year-old woman was found dead Sunday evening after authorities were called to a home on Petite Lane.

Erickson-Rogge’s husband, Gary R. Rogge, is in custody and awaiting charges, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

Gary Rogge, 55, called dispatchers at approximately 11 p.m. Sunday. He told them he had shot his wife earlier in the evening and that she was dead, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

The Marinette County District Attorney is reviewing investigative reports and working on filing charges in the case.

“This is an isolated incident inside a residence involving only the husband and wife,” reads a statement from the Sheriff’s Office. “The public is not in any danger.”

Shelley Erickson-Rogge’s family has started a GoFundMe to raise money for memorial services. CLICK HERE to give to the fundraiser.

 

January 23rd, 2019: Clifford Grice, Age 41 – Janesville

Obituary

The man arrested in a Janesville homicide Wednesday has been identified as Lucas Stuhr, Janesville Police Chief David Moore said in a Thursday afternoon news conference.

Police say Stuhr’s relationship was coming to an end with a Browntown woman and Stuhr shot and killed the woman’s new boyfriend at his Janesville home in the 2600-block of Kellogg Avenue.

The Rock County Medical Examiner’s Department has identified the homicide victim as 41-year-old Clifford Grice of Janesville.

Lieutenant Charles Aagaard says the woman was at the shooting scene but was unhurt.

Aaagard says there have been domestic violence-related incidents involving the woman and Stuhr in the past, but says investigators are still seeking more information.  Court records show Stuhr was convicted of a misdemeanor domestic abuse offense in 2012 involving a separate woman.

Aagaard says it’s unknown yet whether Stuhr followed the woman to the victim’s Janesville home.

Green County Sheriff Jeff Skatrud says deputies responded to Stuhr’s Green County home after the killing, but Stuhr drove his car between buildings and a snowy farm field.  Skatrud says a nearly twenty mile pursuit ensued, with Stuhr avoiding the deployment of stop sticks on Highway 11.  Skatrud says Stuhr turned into a dead end road at a Brodhead campground, and ultimately surrendered, also throwing hand gun out of his car.

February 5th, 2019: Jamie A. Wilson, Age 36 – Milwaukee

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Obituary

The family of a woman fatally stabbed near 70th and Fiebrantz on Feb. 5 said the 36-year-old called police multiple times in the days leading up to her death. They believe Jamie Wilson’s death could have been prevented.

According to court records, a week before Wilson’s murder, her boyfriend was arrested, accused of shooting at her and threatening to kill her. Wilson’s family said the suspect was released a few days later after posting bail. As of Tuesday, Feb. 19, Ramone Jones, 42, was wanted for questioning in connection with the homicide.

“This was the last photo she posted on Facebook,” said James Wilson, as he shared pictures and memories of his daughter. “She just loved doing her makeup. Just loved trying to look pretty, and my daughter was beautiful. She looked just like her mom.”

Jamie Wilson was killed at her home.

“I don’t sleep at night. I get up — I walk around at night. I think about my daughter all day,” said James Wilson.

He said Jamie, a mother of two, was in the process of breaking free from an abusive relationship that was escalating quickly.

“My daughter had actually told him she didn’t want to see him anymore,” said James Wilson.

On Jan. 30, according to a criminal complaint, Jamie Wilson called 911 on Jones. According to the court documents, he “kicked in the door” of her house, “fired a gun” at the floor and threatened “he would kill her, Jamie, and Jamie’s daughter if they let police know he had a gun.” Jones was arrested, but released on Feb. 3, as prosecutors continued to build their case against him.

“Three days later, my daughter’s dead,” said James Wilson.

Fearing for her life, he said Jamie Wilson and her children moved into a hotel so Jones couldn’t find them. On Feb. 5, she and her 11-year-old daughter stopped at the house to grab some clothes. Jamie Wilson didn’t make it out alive.

Authorities said Jones is considered a suspect in the murder of Jamie Wilson — a murder her father said he believes could have been prevented, had Jones remained in custody.

“If he would have went to jail and Milwaukee County would have done their job, my daughter would be alive today and he would have been locked up in Milwaukee County where he should have been,” said James Wilson.

An arrest warrant was issued for Jones in connection with the Jan. 30 incident. Charges were filed against him for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and endangering safety by use of a dangerous weapon.

Meanwhile, Jamie Wilson’s family set up a GoFundMe.com account to raise money for her children. CLICK HERE to access that account.

February 14th, 2019: Barbara Renken, Age 77- Pine River

Obituary

The Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office identified the woman Monday they say was shot to death last week in a Pine River home as 77-year-old Barbara Renken.

Authorities found Renken dead Thursday morning in a home on Range Line Road, according to the Sheriff’s Office. John Renken, 78, whom they found with critical gunshot injuries, remained in the hospital as of Monday afternoon.

Officers found the Renkens around 8:30 a.m. Thursday when they responded to the home for a welfare check. Shortly after that, the Sheriff’s Office reported it was responding to a “critical incident” in the town of Pine River but the public was not in any danger.

No charges have been filed with the Lincoln County District Attorney’s Office in connection with this case.

February 15th, 2019: Montrell T. Marks, Age 22 – Milwaukee

Obituary

A man who was shot to death on Milwaukee’s north side was identified by police Tuesday as Montrell T.  Marks, 22.

Marks was shot shortly before 3 p.m. Friday in the 2600 block of North 48th Street, according to police.

He was shot after an altercation with a “domestic partner.” A 23-year-old woman was arrested at the scene and a firearm was recovered, police said.

 

February 18th, 2019: Brooke Fontaine, Age 34 – Suamico

A man opened fire on his child’s mother in Suamico Monday morning before turning the gun on himself, the Brown County Sheriff’s Office says.

The suspect, 28-year-old Sebastian Royal, made an apparent confession in a Facebook Live video he recorded prior to the shooting.

Deputies were called to a home on Mystic Hills Terrace, just north of Lineville Road, at about 2:25 a.m. The victim’s mother had called 911 to report her daughter, Brooke Fontaine, had been shot in the head.

Brown County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Dave Poteat says Sebastian Royal had approached the home and fired multiple rounds into the bedroom of Brooke Fontaine’s 4-year-old daughter from a previous relationship.

Brooke Fontaine’s mother had been staying in the same room as the child. She shielded her grandchild. That’s when Brooke Fontaine entered the room.

“Came up to the window, saw Mr. Royal, again yelling at him to stop, and she was shot in the head,” Poteat says.

Fontaine, 34, was taken to a hospital where she died Monday morning. Royal was dead at the scene of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.

The Sheriff’s Office says Royal and Fontaine had been involved in a custody dispute in Outagamie County involving their 14-month-old child.

“Immediately prior to the shooting, Mr. Royal recorded an apology, an explanation for his son via Facebook Live,” Poteat says. “Mr. Royal said he was going to ‘Do what was fair.'”

Online court records show Royal failed to appear for a court hearing in the custody case and a bench warrant was issued on Jan. 16.

Royal was previously known as Demitrius D. Moore. The Milwaukee resident changed his name to Sebastian Royal last year.

February 19th, 2019: Dona Mae Bayerl, Age 38 – Muskego (missing since 5/6/1979)

On Tuesday, February 19 detectives from Muskego Police partnered with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office in Florida to arrest 78-year-old John Bayerl at his home in Fort Myers.

Bayerl is facing a charge of first-degree murder in the May 6, 1979 disappearance of his wife, Dona Mae Bayerl, who was 38-years-old at the time she disappeared. At the time, John Bayerl stated that Dona Mae stormed out of their home after an argument, and had not been seen since. Dona Mae never returned home. Family and friends of Dona Mae Bayerl were adamant that she would never leave her daughters, and they feared something happened to her. John Bayerl waited three days to report the disappearance to police.

Dona Mae’s sister told police the marriage had been deteriorating for quite some time. The sister was helping with the kids and John Bayerl indicated she could be there for quite some time. Bayerl confirmed to police that communication and their marriage had been failing.

According to the criminal complaint, during a visit of the Bayerl home detectives found what looked like splattered blood on the back door to the garage and on a child’s seat mounted on the back of a bike. The sister told police it was strange that Bayerl did all the laundry the day after she went missing including rugs and a quilt.

While interviewing with police, Bayerl said that he fought with Dona Mae often and punched or pinched his wife at least six times. He also confessed to having a girlfriend.

Police interviewed Bayerl’s first wife before Dona Mae who said that he abused her. Bayerl’s third wife who he married a year after Dona Mae disappeared also said she was abused.

John Bayerl remained a person of interest in his wife’s disappearance. On May 20, 1980, John Bayerl was granted a divorce from Dona Mae Bayerl and on August 5, 1986, Dona Mae was legally declared dead.

In 2009, Bayerl’s daughter Jackie recorded a conversation she had with her daughter when he said that Dona Mae was a loving mother and he didn’t think she was still alive.

In 2018, Detectives updated Bayerl on the missing persons case when he admitted to being a bad father and husband and said he would sometimes abuse his wives. He told police he, “knows in his mind he is not guilty of anything other than being a bad husband.”

Muskego Police have had recent contact with Dona Mae’s family and friends and no one has ever had contact with her since 1979. No body has ever been found, but there is no proof of life.

Bayerl was arrested without incident in Florida. He made a court appearance Wednesday in Florida and is being held without bond. He waived extradition and is returning to Wisconsin.

In October 2017, Muskego Police released new age progression photos of Dona Bayerl asking the public to help them find her. Police and family working with FBI forensic artists came up with a photo of what Dona Bayerl might look like.

February 22nd, 2019:  Arkaydin Marquez, Age 3 months – Racine WI

On Friday, February 22 Racine Police were called to Summit Avenue for a baby that wasn’t breathing.

The 3-month-old boy was taken to Children’s Hospital where it was discovered that the child had injuries that may have caused the baby to stop breathing. The child died.

“He was such a happy baby. Every time he would smile he would have the biggest dimples and he would always try to use so much strength and just hold himself up,” Brittney, the Arkaydin’s mother said.

Investigators have determined the death of the baby was a homicide and the child’s father has been arrested for the death of the child.

“This is literally unbearable. I was just with my baby every day for three months and then he’s gone. Just never going to see him again,” Brittney said.

Brittney keeps a bear close by, dressed in what Arkaydin was wearing when he was taken to the hospital last week. He wasn’t breathing and police said he had injuries on his body.

Police have not said what injuries the boy endured and the investigation is ongoing.

March 2nd, 2019:  Brooke Harris, Age 26 – OshKosh, WI

Police say an Oshkosh woman was fatally shot by the father of her child, who then took his own life.

Authorities say 26-year-old Clint Jorgensen called 911 about 4 p.m. Saturday. Police Chief Dean Smith says when officers arrived they heard a baby crying inside the residence.

Police found 26-year-old Brooke Harris with multiple gunshot wounds at the top of the stairs. She died at the hospital. Smith says they found Jorgensen dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound and a gun next to him.

Authorities say the couple had been having relationship problems and Harris had been staying with family members. Smith says Harris had gone to the residence to drop off their 9-month-old child, who was not injured.

 

UPDATE: Pine River man dies after Feb. 14 shooting that killed wife Submitted: 03/11/2019
TOWN OF PINE RIVER – The second of two people shot in a home in Lincoln County last month died.

According to a release from the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, John Renken passed away.  The release did not say when Renken died, but according to his online obituary he died Thursday, March 7.
Renken, 78, and his wife, Barbara, were found shot in their Pine River home on Feb. 14.  Barbara Renken died at the scene while John Renken was taken to the hospital with critical injuries.

 

The sheriff’s office has said all along the public was not in any danger and there were no suspects in the case, but to this point has not said how the Renkens were shot.

“This continues to be an isolated incident,” Monday’s media release said.

Renken’s obituary notes he and Barbara, 77, ran a dairy farm in Pine River. Renken also worked at Weinbrenner Shoe Company in Merrill and Iattoni & Sons Masonry.

A funeral for Renken is set for Tuesday, March 12 at Calvary Lutheran Church in Pine River.

March 11th, 2019:  Sierra and Noelani Robinson, Ages 24 & 2 – Milwaukee, WI

Obituary

The man accused of abducting 2-year-old Noelani Robinson and fatally shooting Sierra Robinson, 24, made his initial court appearance Sunday, March 17. Cash bond was set at $1 million.

Higgins faces one count of first degree intentional homicide, use of a dangerous weapon in connection with the fatal shooting of Sierra Robinson that happened March 11 near 91st and Mill. He faces one count of first degree recklessly endangering safety, use of a dangerous weapon in connection with the abduction of Noelani Robinson.

A preliminary hearing was scheduled for March 25.  Higgins was arrested March 13 near 103rd and Caldwell. Police said a second person was arrested for harboring/aiding a fugitive.

An Amber Alert was issued for Noelani Robinson on March 11 after her mother was murdered. Officials with the Minnesota Department of Safety said on Friday evening, March 15, a passerby reported seeing a blanket and possible remains in a ditch along Highway 218, about a mile north of Blooming Prairie, Minnesota — in Steele County. A child’s body was found wrapped in a blanket. The Southern Minnesota Regional Medical Examiner’s Officials preliminarily identified the child as Noelani Robinson. The medical examiner determined the preliminary cause and manner of death to be homicide due to blunt force trauma to the head.

Minnesota Department of Safety officials said a search warrant was executed at a hotel in Austin, Minnesota, where it was believed Higgins stayed at one point during the search for Noelani Robinson. Officials noted “where, when and who killed Noelani Robinson will be determined during the course of the investigation.”

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Charges against Higgins were filed out of Milwaukee County on March 12 — while he was still on the run.  According to the criminal complaint, police were called to 91st and Mill just after 1 p.m. on March 11. They located Sierra Robinson — who was fatally shot. Another woman, 28, was lying on the ground. She was taken to Froedtert Hospital for treatment of her injuries.

“I just never would have imagined that someone would be capable of committing a crime such as this,” said Charity Brooks, Sierra Robinson’s stepmother. “We’re aware of the things that are happening, but we’re trying not to, at this particular point, focus as much on it. Right now, we just want to make sure we’re prepared to lay Sierra and Noelani to rest in the most dignified way possible. It’s a step for us to move towards closure and heal as a family and heal as a nation.”

The woman who was wounded spoke to police after getting treatment. The criminal complaint indicated she said she knew Higgins as “DL” — and had known him for seven years. She indicated Sierra Robinson had been “messing around” and Robinson became pregnant — and that “DL and Sierra stayed together with their child, Noelani.”

The complaint indicated in February, “Sierra no longer wanted to be with DL and she moved to Las Vegas, leaving the child with DL.” But once in Las Vegas, Robinson tried to get Noelani back from Higgins. Eventually he agreed to give Noelani back to Robinson — and on Saturday, March 9, “Sierra flew back to Milwaukee.”

According to the criminal complaint, Higgins agreed to let Robinson have Noelani on Monday. They were set to meet near 22nd and Fond du Lac. The woman who was wounded in the shooting told police she went with Robinson for this meeting — but the child was not with Higgins. Instead, the complaint said the “three of them drove around, smoking weed, drinking and talking about old times.” The woman told police she noticed Higgins had “a small, mini Draco AK style rifle in the driver’s map pocket.”

The complaint indicated Higgins finally drove to an apartment building near 91st and Mill Road and “he told them that was where Noelani was.” The woman and Robinson were walking ahead of Higgins to the apartment when the woman said she heard gunshots. The woman said she “immediately felt pain to her stomach and she looked back and saw DL holding the Draco with two hands shooting at her and Sierra.” After the shooting, Higgins got back into the SUV and drove away.

March 18th, 2019: Neyaka Oliver, Age 27 – Milwaukee, WI

Disturbing details have been released about a murder-suicide investigation near 58th and Keefe Monday, March 18. Family and friends of the victim said she had been trying to get out of an abusive relationship with the suspect.

Police identified the victim as Neyaka Oliver. Loved ones said the 27-year-old did everything she was supposed to do to break free from an abusive relationship, but it wasn’t enough.

On Monday, Oliver was found dead near 58th and Keefe. Investigators said she had been shot and killed by a 26-year-old man, who then turned the gun on himself.

While the suspect’s name was not released, Oliver’s family said he was her boyfriend.

According to court documents, an arrest warrant was issued for the suspect on March 16 in connection to several domestic abuse offenses — including strangulation, battery and criminal damage to property.

A criminal complaint said Oliver went to police on March 13, telling officers that the previous evening, her live-in boyfriend choked her three to four times, to the point where she “felt herself fading.” She said he also slapped and punched her 10 times and “threatened to stab her.”

Oliver said the next day, the suspect showed up at her workplace, telling her to come outside. At that point, Oliver said she “feared for her safety.”

While she was gone from her home, Oliver said that the suspect caused $3,000 worth of damage to her belongings, including cutting up and bleaching piles of clothes.

Oliver taught preschool at Next Door Foundation Milwaukee for three years. The parents of her students described Oliver as a bright, intelligent woman whose voice and smile would light up the room.

“What was the sense in doing all that? I mean, these kids out here, they need her. They looked up to her,” said Michael Calhoun Sr., Next Door grandparent.

“It feel unreal to us. It’s like, we just seen her,” said Maryann Carter, Next Door parent.

Known as Ms. Neyaka, mother Maryan Carter says Oliver had a profound impact on her son.

“We went into her classroom and he was looking for her. He kept asking where’s Ms. Neyaka, where’s she at? I said baby she’s not here. She’s gone,” said Carter.

An online database shows the incident is the fourth domestic violence related homicide in Milwaukee so far this year.

Meantime, a GoFundMe account has been set up for Neyaka.

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