2021 Deaths

2021 Domestic Violence-Related Deaths in Wisconsin

 As of April 1st, 23 Wisconsin lives have been lost to domestic violence homicide in 2021. That’s one person killed every 3.9 days. If we continue at that pace, 93 lives are projected to be lost to domestic violence in Wisconsin this year.  17% of victims were age 18 or under.  Our website may define domestic violence homicide somewhat differently than the state coalition, End Abuse, WI.  We consider sibling homicides and parent/child homicides also as domestic violence, including family cases where intimate partner violence may not have been a factor.  We believe that all homicides that happen within a family or intimate partner relationship constitute domestic violence.

January 6th:  Jesus Medrano Jr., Age 49 and Latrice Meyers-Medrano, Age 36 – Kenosha

Wisconsin authorities allege a Wisconsin man murdered his father and his stepmom after being caught molesting a minor in the family’s Kenosha home.  A press release from Kenosha Police confirms Latrice Meyers-Medrano, 36, and her husband, Jesus “Jesse” Medrano, Jr., 49, were stabbed to death last week. Inside the home at the time of the crime, police said, were four other children.  Police have detained Jesus V. Medrano III, 24, on two counts of first-degree intentional homicide, attempted first-degree sexual assault and physical abuse of a child. He remains behind bars on $2.5 million bond.  Officers were initially dispatched to the couple’s home Wednesday morning at around 4:30 a.m. “to investigate a possible sex crime.” When they arrived, officers “discovered that some type of struggle had taken place,” reads the release.  Not long after, they found the couple dead inside a bedroom.  The criminal complaint in the case reports police noted there was blood on the walls of the home. The complaint alleges the suspect carried out the killings with a machete.  The complaint alleges the killings happened after his father caught Medrano molesting a child in the home.

It is alleged in the criminal complaint Medrano said he’d recently been having sexual thoughts about an underage girl, and decided to act upon those impulses. He allegedly said he entered her bedroom with the machete and a pair of socks, to stifle her screams. The girl fought back, and, hearing the commotion, the father came into the room, according to the complaint.  Medrano allegedly told detectives he stabbed his father with the machete as his stepmother was approaching the bedroom door, and that he said he chased after her, leaping over his father’s body, according to the complaint.  The elder Medrano and Meyers-Medrano were pronounced dead at the scene.  Police found the suspect at his brother’s house. Still allegedly wielding the machete, Medrano was ordered to drop the weapon. Before eventually complying with police orders, he asked them to kill him, investigators allege in the criminal complaint.  Medrano, who faces life in prison if convicted, has yet to enter pleas to the charges he faces.

January 9th:  Harper, Age 4 days old – Albany, WI

A 16-year-old father allegedly told prosecutors he left his newborn daughter to die in snow-filled tree before later admitting to shooting the little girl twice in the head.  The teen, identified as Logan Kruckenberg-Anderson, faces a first-degree homicide charge in connection with the infant’s death. A criminal complaint, filed Tuesday, detailed what the teenage father told investigators who had been searching for the baby.  According to the complaint, Kruckenberg-Anderson told them he placed the newborn baby, who had been named Harper, naked in a snow-filled tree in the woods near of the Village of Albany. Prosecutors say he claimed to have covered the infant with snow and walked away, adding that he knew the child would likely die of exposure.  Kruckenberg-Anderson reportedly continued, saying he could still hear Harper crying as he left, causing him to break down, dropping to his knees and crying.  After leading to investigators to Harper’s body, the complaint states, a member of the Wisconsin State Crime lab found the girl had been shot and surmised the baby was likely alive – or recently alive – when she was placed in the tree.  In an interview following the discovery of Harper’s body and bullet wounds, Kruckenberg-Anderson admitted to shooting her twice in the head, the complaint states, noting that two bullets were found at the scene where she was discovered.  An autopsy determined Harper was alive when she was shot.

Kruckenberg-Anderson is also charged with hiding the corpse of a child. He appeared in court for the first time Tuesday afternoon where his cash bond was set at one million dollars. He is due back in court on January 20 for a preliminary hearing.  The complaint states a man called Green Co. authorities early Saturday morning, saying his teenage daughter gave birth to a daughter four days earlier, on January 5, in the bathtub of a Village of Albany home. The caller added Kruckenberg-Anderson had taken the baby and they had not seen her since.  The child’s mother told investigators she and Kruckenberg-Anderson had decided they could not keep the child and needed to do something so the infant wasn’t in their life, the complaint stated.  Initially, Kruckenberg-Anderson allegedly told a Green Co. deputy that he gave the baby to a friend named Tyler, whom he met via Snapchat’s “Quick Add” feature, and Tyler was supposed to take the baby to an adoption agency in Madison.  Kruckenberg-Anderson even offered details about the man, offering a description of him and the SUV he was reportedly driving as well as saying he paid the individual $60 to drop of the baby to be adopted, the complaint said.  Investigators also believe they have recovered the gun used to kill Harper. They say a juvenile turned in a firearm, saying Kruckenberg-Anderson gave it to him days earlier. The weapon’s caliber was consistent with the bullets and casings found at the scene.

January 14th:  Unnamed Baby, Age 3 months- Wausau

A Wausau man has been arrested in relation to the death of an infant.  According to Wausau Police Captain Ben Graham, police were notified on Saturday, January 9, of a 3-month-old at Aspirus Wausau Hospital with an unexplained life-threatening brain injury. He says a criminal investigation into the incident began immediately.  Police say the infant was brought to the hospital by his mother and father. He was soon transferred to Marshfield Children’s Hospital for emergent and specialized care due to the extent of the injury and age of the infant.  Reportedly, the infant died on January 14 of his injuries, an autopsy is scheduled for Tuesday.  On Friday, January 15, Ronnie D. Lofton, 39, was arrested, Police identify him as the infant’ father.  Police are referring a preliminary charge of first degree reckless homicide to the Marathon County District Attorney’s Office.  Lofton is expected in Marathon County District Court on Tuesday afternoon for a preliminary hearing. Police say if probable cause is found, an initial appearance will be scheduled for a later date.  The investigation is ongoing.

January 15th: Racine shooting was an attempted murder-suicide

The Racine Police Department has confirmed that a Friday morning shooting inside a multifamily home near Downtown Racine ended in the suicide of the shooter.  A woman was hospitalized after reportedly being shot in the chest. She remains hospitalized as of Tuesday, but is now in “stable condition,” Sgt. Chad Melby of the Racine Police Department said in an email.

The man accused of shooting her died after turning the gun on himself, according to Melby.  The man has been identified as Donta Cook, 49, of Racine. The Journal Times is not releasing the name of the woman who was shot.  The shooting occurred before 5:30 a.m. Friday in a six-unit building at the southwest corner of College Avenue and Eighth Street.  A man who said he lives in the upstairs unit next to where the shooting was reported told The Journal Times last week he was awoken by gunshots — at least one bullet went through his apartment wall — followed by a woman who began banging on his door while screaming: “Help! Help! I’m going to die!”  The woman was still conscious when paramedics took her away, the neighbor said. The man who was shot in the head did not appear to be alive when he was taken away, according to the neighbor.  Neighbors said the man and the woman lived together and had moved into the building within the past month.

January 22nd:  Terrence Vinz, Age 65 and Debra Meagher, Age 62- Rochester, WI

Terrence’s Obituary    Debra’s Obituary

Sheriff’s officials say three people found fatally shot at a residence in Racine County last week were family members.  Investigators believe 30-year-old Matthew Vinz killed his parents, whose bodies were found concealed in the home’s garage.  Officials say 65-year-old Terrence Vinz and 62-year-old Debra Meagher had been dead “for a significant amount of time.”  Deputies checking on the welfare of the family last Friday said they heard a single gunshot as they arrived at the home in the Village of Rochester, took a tactical position and set up a perimeter.  They found the couple’s son dead from a self-inflicted gunshot in the home’s basement.

January 24th:  Jolene Medeiros, Age 38 – Nelson, WI

Obituary

A Buffalo County man could spend the rest of his life inside a prison for allegedly shooting his wife over the weekend.  Jonathan P. Medeiros, 38, of Nelson is charged with one count of 1st degree intentional homicide.  According to the criminal complaint filed in Buffalo County Court:  Medeiros called authorities on Jan. 24 saying he had shot and killed his wife.  When authorities arrived they found Jolene Medeiros with two gunshot wounds to her head.  A deputy said as he was taking Jonathan into custody he once again admitted shooting his wife.  An investigator said Jonathan told him, “I stood up out of bed, grabbed a shotgun, and shot once. She was screaming at me and I shot again.”  The investigator said he could smell alcohol on Jonathan.  Medeiros was in court on Tuesday where a $500,000 cash bond was set. He is slated to be back in court for a preliminary hearing on Feb. 5.

January 25th:  murder-suicide leaves 2 men dead in Wisconsin Rapids

On January 25, the Wisconsin Rapids Police Department responded to a call for service at the 2100 block of 3rd Street South.  According to police, they were called to the scene after what’s described as an out of town family member doing a welfare check discovered a body.  Police say the deceased male had a “recent and apparent self-inflicted gun shot wound.” They then found another decease male within the home.  The State Crime Laboratory-Madison also responded to help process the scene. A forensic autopsy was performed on the body of the second male.  They say as a result of the investigation, it’s been determined that the first male discovered intentionally shot the second male, then later shot himself.  Police say the men are brothers, suffered from medical issues, and had been residing at the home together for “some time.”  Police say this is an isolated incident and the public is not in danger.  No other information is being released at this time.

January 31st:  Jovanni Frausto, Age 19 – Appleton, WI

Charges have been filed against a 17-year-old sought in connection to a fatal shooting at Fox River Mall.  A criminal complaint obtained by Action 2 News states Dezman Ellis has been charged with 1st Degree Intentional Homicide and 1st Degree Recklessly Endangering Safety.  An arrest warrant has been issued for Ellis, 17. His blue Dodge Avenger was found in Oshkosh Monday, but Ellis remains on the run. Police say Ellis should be considered armed and dangerous. If you see him, do not approach him. Call police. The U.S. Marshals Service is assisting Grand Chute Police in the effort to arrest Ellis.  “Our investigators are actively working with the Marshals Service to follow up on all tips as they are received. We are extremely thankful for the large volume of tips we have already received and ask the public to continue submitting tips and information to us,” says Officer Travis Waas.  Police say Ellis shot and killed 19-year-old Jovanni Frausto Sunday in the mall food court during an argument over a girl.  Another man, Colt Lemmers, was shot and injured. He was treated and released from the hospital.

Jovanni’s girlfriend told investigators that they went to the mall to eat at about 2:45 p.m. Jovanni and his girlfriend were accompanied by the girl’s niece. They were walking around when they came across a group of people they knew–one of them Dezman Ellis.  The girlfriend said Jovanni and Dezman “started to exchange words.”  Jovanni’s girlfriend told police that their argument was over a girl who was in Dezman’s group. About three months ago, Jovanni had been talking to the girl at the center of the dispute. Jovanni’s girlfriend said the girl had previously dated Dezman Ellis, but they were broken up when Jovanni was talking with her.  Jovanni’s current girlfriend says during the argument at the mall, Dezman threatened Jovanni, saying, “I will shoot this place up, I will kill you.” She says Dezman Ellis started flashing a gun. She left the area with her niece and Jovanni took off running.  “Jovanni ran straight and Dezman was chasing him with the gun,” says Jovanni’s girlfriend. She said Jovanni was not armed.  A witness in Dezman Ellis’ group said Dezman had a black handgun. She heard two shots. She saw Jovanni Frausto hold his chest, fall into a table, and then to the ground.

Dezman’s friend said their group ran out of the mall and drove away. She told police she dropped Dezman off at his apartment in the 700 block of Woodland Av in Oshkosh.  Another member of the group confirmed to police that Dezman had a gun and shot it. She stated that she believed Ellis still had the gun.  Survivor Colt Lemmers told police that he had spotted a friend near the Panda Express in the mall when he heard someone say “drop the gun.” He turned around and heard a shot. After the first shot, he felt something hit his hip. He described the pain as “feeling like a bee sting.” That’s when he realized he had been shot.  Police found two 9mm spent shell casings in the food court.  A witness later told police that he saw Ellis and his brother loading a blue Dodge Avenger with clothing and other items at the apartment on Woodland Av. That was right before police arrived at the apartment.  Jovanni Frausto suffered a wound to his chest and an exit wound through the back. He wat taken to a hospital where he was pronounced dead. An autopsy determined the caust of death to be two gunshot wounds.  Police later spoke with Dezman Ellis’ brother, who stated that Dezman told him that he shot someone at the mall.  Jovanni’s girlfriend said they had not planned to meet with Dezman in the mall that day and it was a random occurance.  Jovanni Frausto’s mother, Tanya, has set up a GoFundMe account, and is asking for donations to cover funeral expenses.  On the page, she wrote “I never expected to have to bury my 19-year-old son to gun violence,” and “This is a difficult time for our family and we ask for your prayers.”  CLICK HERE to donate to the GoFundMe.  Jovanni’s uncle, JJ, says his nephew was a good kid. “His grandmother loved him. She has passed away in 2016, so I’m pretty sure grandma will take care of him,” says JJ Aponte.

February 14th: Kally Elliott, Age 41 – Janesville, WI

Obituary

The family of a woman killed in a homicide at a Wisconsin Dells hotel has identified her as Kally Elliott of Janesville.  Jonathann Elliott confirmed to 27 News his mother was the woman found dead at The Vue Hotel in Wisconsin Dells on Feb. 14.  Jeremy Mondy, 34, has been arrested and charged with first-degree intentional homicide in Elliott’s death. He’s in the Columbia County Jail on $5 million bail.  Mondy also faces charges of domestic abuse in Rock County. Authorities say Elliott was also the victim in that case. He was out on a signature bond when the homicide occurred.  Jonathann Elliott says his mother’s killing was an escalation of her being victimized nearly her entire adult life. “Definitely a victim of domestic violence,” Elliott says of his mother. “There’s no other way around it.”

“We went through (domestic violence), for the majority of life to be honest,” Elliott says. “We went through it a long time, several different people,” he says.
“We want to make domestic violence more known than what it is because it’s more serious than what everybody thinks it is,” Elliott says. “It’s gotten so bad, especially since the (pandemic),” he says.  Court records show Mondy allegedly strangled Kally Elliott and threatened to kill her days before the Valentine’s Day fatal violence. Records state Mondy claimed at first to have shot Elliott at the hotel during a struggle for a gun, but then revised his account to say he shot the woman in self-defense.  Jonathann Elliott declines to comment on his mother’s relationship with Mondy, citing Mondy’s on-going prosecution.

Elliott’s fiance, Alexus Salvner says Kally Elliott was like a mother to her and a grandmother to her toddler children. Salvner says Kally Elliott deserves to be remembered as more than a victim.  “She was strong, she was a fighter, she was a mother, a sister,” Salvner says. “She was so giving.”  Salvner and Jonathann Elliott say they will continue to raise awareness of domestic violence and honor Kally Elliott in July on their wedding day.  “We’re getting married on her birthday,” Salvner says. “And we’re going to incorporate the domestic violence purple into our wedding.”  “We’re not going to let her memory die,” Salvner says.  Family members say a GoFundMe page has been established in connection with Kally Elliott’s death to help them with costs for her cremation.

February 14th:  Unnamed Baby, 39 days old – Racine, WI

RACINE — A Racine teenager has been charged with the murder of his own 1-month-old child.  Shavale Powell, 17, of the 2000 block of 16th Street, was charged Monday with first-degree reckless homicide and two counts of physical abuse of a child after one of his children was found dead and another child was found with a bruise on his left eye.  According to a criminal complaint:  On Feb. 14, police and rescue responded to the 1800 block of LaSalle Street, Racine, to a 911 call for a pulseless, non-breathing infant.  Upon arrival, the child, just 39 days old, was found deceased and cold. The parents of the child, born Jan. 6, were present and identified as Powell and Javian Clark, 18.  Clark is listed as a co-defendant in Powell’s case. Racine County District Attorney Tricia Hanson said Monday afternoon that Clark will be charged Tuesday.   Both parents reported that they had been the only caregivers the last week the child was alive.  An examination by the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner’s Office determined that the child died from abusive head trauma and ruled the death a homicide. The preliminary injuries described by the medical examiner were as follows:

  • Blunt force injuries to the baby’s head: contusions of face, fracture of left parietal bone, subdural hemorrhage, optic nerve hemorrhages, bilateral.
  • Blunt force injuries to the baby’s chest: contusions of the chest and back, multiple rib fractures.
  • Blunt force injuries to the baby’s extremities: abrasions of right hand, contusions of the left lower ext

An arrest in the death was made Feb. 16, the Racine Police Department reported.  The issue with the older child was later examined at the Racine County Children’s Advocacy Center, and the injury was ruled concerning for abuse. Investigators found that the 1-year-old had suffered an injury to his right eye on Feb. 4, 2020, when he was 5 months old and immobile. The child was seen at the emergency room that same day, and diagnosed with severe subconjunctival hemorrhage concerning blunt force trauma to the child’s right eye and face.

Also present at that time was a small scratch that was out of proportion to the size of the hemorrhage. Neither parent could explain any kind of trauma that would have resulted in such a serious injury to such a small child.

A preliminary hearing for Powell is scheduled for March 4 at 8:45 a.m., online court records show. His cash bond was set at $50,000 Monda

Online court records also show Powell is facing an October charge for disorderly conduct-domestic abuse.

February 14th:  Gia Buccieri Martin, 39- Kenosha, WI

Obituary

The boyfriend of a woman found dead at her home after being reported missing weeks before is expected to be charged with her death.  Gia Buccieri Martin, 39, was reported missing on Jan. 26, with family saying she had last been seen the previous day. She was found dead on Feb. 14 at the home she shared with her boyfriend on the 5100 block of 14th Avenue.  The boyfriend, Roderick Lamar Smith, 39, has been in custody at the Kenosha County Jail on a probation hold since the day Martin was found, as police continued to investigate the cause of her death.  Smith is expected to be formally charged Wednesday.

February 19th:  Daemyn Lucas, 6 weeks- Menomonie, WI

One count of first degree reckless homicide is filed today against a Menomonie man tied to the death of his six-week-old son.Cash bond is set at $30,000 for 28-year-old Jonathon Lucas.  He’s scheduled to make an initial appearance in Dunn County Court Friday.  A criminal complaint says law enforcement officers arrived at Lucas’s apartment on Feb. 19, and heard yelling coming from inside.  When they entered, they noticed the baby, later identified as Daemyn Lucas, lying motionless on the kitchen counter.  An officer started CPR, but Daemyn later died at a local hospital.  A preliminary breath test taken that night showed Jonathan Lucas to have a blood alcohol level above the legal limit.  He said couldn’t remember what happened to Daemyn.  Lucas told investigators that he would take full responsibility for what happened to his son even through he believed he blacked out and could not remember what happened.  An autopsy found traumatic head injuries due to physical assault as the case of death. The manner was listed as homicide.  An assistant medical examiner told law enforcement that the injuries could not have been caused by an accident.

March 8th: Charniese Brown, Age 26, Kenosha WI

Ranon Brownlee was booked early Tuesday morning with recommended charges of first-degree intentional homicide in the death of Charniese Brown, 26, of Kenosha. Police said Brownlee would be referred on domestic violence charges, as well.  Kenosha Police officers were called to the home in the 1700 block of 73rd Street at 5:31 p.m. Monday by a woman who called 911 screaming that someone was trying to kill her.  Friends on social media said Brown was the mother of several young children. Friends described Brown as a devoted parent, a “rock-star mom.”

Outside the home Tuesday morning, police tape surrounded the yard, which was scattered with children’s toys. Neighbors said Brownlee and Brown had lived together in the home for about a year, with a blended family of five or six children.  A couple who lives next door, who did not want to be identified, said they were at home with their front door and windows open and had heard nothing until police vehicles sped up to the home.  “The kids were out playing in the yard when it happened, the police yelled at them to get on the porch, and they ran across the street and were watching from the porch there,” one of the neighbors said.

The couple said they saw Brown lying on the ground in the narrow side yard between their houses.  “They were working hard to save her life,” the neighbor said.  He described Brown as being covered with blood, saying it appeared that she had been stabbed.  “It just really breaks my heart that someone so young is gone,” the neighbor said. “… I can still see in my mind her body lying there.”

Although they said they did not know them well, the neighbors said the couple had been quiet and that Brown was friendly.  Kris Coleman of Kenosha said he was on his way home from work when he saw police cars quickly approaching in his direction. Coleman said the squad cars “flew past me” while he was on his motorcycle. He realized the area they were headed to wasn’t far from his house about three blocks away.  As Coleman arrived at the scene just east of Lincoln Park, at least a dozen squad cars were there, along with community services officer vehicles and two ambulances, he said. Coleman said he learned from the couple’s next-door neighbor that police had Brownlee surrounded and had held him at gunpoint. Neighbors said Brown had been stabbed in front of her children.

According to Coleman, other children who had been outside playing in the neighborhood apparently saw the grisly incident unfold, too, and he watched as officers talked with them.  “It’s pretty sad that neighborhood kids had to witness that,” Coleman said.  Coleman said police had handcuffed Brownlee, who was covered in blood, and that he sat in a chair outside a home before personnel placed him on a stretcher and then into one of the ambulances. He was taken away about 25 minutes later.  Coleman also said officers stood guard between two homes where Brown’s body, covered by a tarp, remained. The medical examiner arrived several hours later. Coleman said his “prayers and thoughts” were with the family.  “I hope the community can show their support for them and to come together for this,” he said.

Brownlee had been charged in October 2019 with domestic violence-related battery and disorderly conduct, the bond conditions indicating that Brown was the victim in that case. The charges were eventually dismissed.  Multiple squad cars surrounded the neighborhood Monday night while police cordoned it off from spectators who stood outside, some with cameras. Some officers congregated at a home that was brightly lit on the outside while others stood at the scene, tape cautioning people not to cross.  According to a police press release, officers were on scene within two minutes of receiving the 5:31 p.m. call. The release also stated that there is no threat to the community regarding the incident.  The death is the fifth homicide in Kenosha this year, a number more typical in a full year in Kenosha County. Four of those five deaths appear to be related to domestic violence.

March 13th:  DOJ investigating after body found in Crawfish River in Wisconsin

The Wisconsin Department of Justice is investigating after a man’s body was found in the Crawfish River Saturday morning.   On Friday morning, the Columbus Police Department responded to a domestic incident at a home in Columbus, Wisconsin, DOJ said. Arriving officers saw a man running from the scene, but lost sight of him.   Columbus police, along with the Columbia and Dodge County Sheriff’s Offices, conducted a search of the area Friday into the following morning, but did not find the man.  Authorities believe the man later found in the river was the same man who ran away from the home. His identity has not yet been released.   The investigation is being led by DOJ’s Division of Criminal Investigation.

March 13th: Tina Decorah, Age 42, and Duane Mallory, Age 33 – Lyndon, WI

Obituary

Obituary

Court documents from a double homicide in the town of Lyndon show authorities believe the victims were murdered using a baseball bat following an argument.  Deputies from the Juneau County Sheriff’s Office found the bodies of Tina Decorah, 42, and Duane Mallory, 33, at a residence in the town of Lyndon during a welfare check March 15. Felix Rivera-Medina, 24, and Tina Decorah’s daughter, Makaela Decorah, 23, were taken into custody during the ensuing investigation.  Rivera-Medina is charged with two counts of first degree intentional homicide as a party to a crime, two counts of felony theft from a corpse as a party to a crime, and felony harboring or aiding a felon. Decorah is charged with two counts of felony theft from a corpse as a party to a crime, felony harboring or aiding a felon and felony bail jumping.

According to a criminal complaint filed in the cases for both Rivera-Medina and Decorah, authorities believe Rivera-Medina murdered both individuals using a baseball bat later found at the residence. Rivera-Medina then joined Decorah at an acquaintance’s house before driving to Baraboo, where they paid for a hotel room using money taken from one of the victims’ purse.

The complaint shows authorities believe Decorah left the residence where she, Rivera-Medina, and the victims lived following an argument shortly after midnight March 15 and went to a nearby home. While at the home, a witness overheard Decorah speaking to Rivera-Medina asking “Wait, what happened? What did you do?” Decorah then told the witness Rivera-Medina had “beat them up.”  Following the call, Decorah and the witness went to the residence, where Decorah picked up her children before returning to the witness’ house where Rivera-Medina later joined them. Rivera-Medina said he had taken one of the victim’s items from the home, including a purse, which Decorah went through for cash.  Rivera-Medina stated he “got (one of the victims) pretty good” and dislocated his jaw, including that he “knocked his teeth out” and cracked the victim’s skull using a baseball bat. A later search of the residence where the victims’ lived found a baseball bat with red stains in the bedroom of Rivera-Medina and Decorah.  Decorah, Rivera-Medina and her children were given a ride to Baraboo by the witness, who gave them $20 for a hotel room. The witness said the rest of the money for the hotel room came from the cash Decorah took from the victim’s purse.  Authorities arrested the couple in Eau Claire on March 17. Messages from Decorah to the father of her children state Decorah said her mother “lost her mind” and that Decorah “beat the (expletive) outta her.” Decorah also texted that “Felix hit (a victim) with a bat. (Expletive) got crazy. I gotta get tf outta here too.”  Rivera-Medina is set for an initial appearance April 13 at the Juneau County Justice Center. Judge Stacy Smith set a $1 million bond for Rivera-Medina at a hearing March 29, following requests from the state of a $2 million bond and from the defense of a signature bond.  Decorah is set for an initial appearance April 14 at the Juneau County Justice Center. Judge Smith set a $240,000 bond for Decorah at a hearing March 29.

March 21st: Man shoots himself during standoff with deputies in Fond du Lac County

A man shot himself Sunday during a standoff with deputies in Fond du Lac County.  Deputies responded around 12:15 a.m. to a reported argument between a man and a woman that involved a firearm at a home in Taycheedah, according to the Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s Office.  After interviewing the woman, deputies stopped a vehicle that left the home at County WH and County W. Officials said deputies found the man hiding in the trunk of the vehicle, and he pulled out a gun.  Officials said deputies surrounded the vehicle and tried to negotiate with the man for several minutes before he shot himself. Deputies started medical treatment and the man was taken to a regional trauma center where he died.  Officials said no deputies were injured and no deputies fired their guns. The Sheboygan County Sheriff’s Office is conducting an investigation of the shooting.

March 21st, Mai Rue (Lily) Vang, Age 30, Wausau, WI

Obituary

The family of Mai Rue Vang, known as Lily Vang, is mourning her loss Monday.  Lily’s sister, Feanna Vang, says Lily was a devoted yet goofy mother who cooked amazing meals that brought together her 17 siblings and their families.  “To all of us, she had the biggest heart. She always gave more than what she received and what she had,” Vang said. “Her dedication as a mother, and as a sister for all of us, and a daughter, can definitely never be replaced for her children or us.”  Feanna Vang says Lily loved her kids and wanted more than anything to have a baby girl, and her wish came true 7 months ago. Now Vang says it’s up to her family to take care of her daughter. Vang says this is a loss of someone who was always there when anyone needed help.  “She, for friends, family, everyone who knew her, I would say she was everyone’s go-to person. She was definitely someone who always lent her shoulder for you to cry on, she was a very modest person and a wonderful mother to her children,” Vang said.  Lily Vang worked as a nail artist and loved creating nail art. Her family had recently encouraged her to sell her own nail designs.  The Vang family needs help paying funeral expenses for Lily. They’ve started a GoFundMe page that raised almost $9,000 by Monday evening.  The Hmong community as a whole is also mourning Vang.  “The fact that this happened here, it deeply affects many members of the community, especially since the Hmong community is a very tight-knit community, it sends a strong ripple effect throughout the entire community,” said Yee Leng Xiong, executive director of the Hmong American Center.

Vang, 30, was shot and killed on the 1300 Block of N. 9th Ave. Sunday morning. Umberto N. Lo was arrested at the scene and appeared in court Monday. Vang’s family says Lo was her boyfriend, and Wausau Police say Lo is known to the department from previous incidents.  Police say how Lo was able to have a gun and walk free with felony charges pending is something they’re trying to answer in their ongoing homicide investigation. Deputy Chief Matthew Barnes was not able to share a motive, but called the situation tragic.  “This is a horrible situation for this community, and all of our officers and our staff that are working on this case are keeping the victim’s family in our prayers,” Barnes said.  If you or someone you know is a victim of domestic violence, Deputy Chief Barnes says, please seek help. You can call 800-799-SAFE or get help from trained Wausau Police Department staff or the Women’s Community.  “This is a wonderful community we live in, because we have a tremendous amount of resources and people standing at the ready to help them. I would beg anyone in that situation to accept that help,” Barnes said.

April 1st: Cary Lynne Elkin, Age 42, Stone Lake, WI

A Stone Lake area man who was arrested on a tentative charge of hiding a corpse in a woman’s gunshot death appeared for a bond review hearing in Sawyer County Court Wednesday, April 7.  The investigation continues into the woman’s death, which was a homicide, according to Sawyer County Sheriff Doug Mrotek. To date, authorities have not filed criminal charges in the incident.  Timothy Patrick Elkin, 43, was arrested Friday, April 2, by Sawyer County sheriff’s officers after the body of 42-year-old Cary Lynne Elkin, Timothy Elkin’s wife, was found in her home on Hungry Lake Lane in the town of Sand Lake. The cause of death was gunshot wounds, according to the Sawyer County coroner.

Timothy Elkin subsequently appeared in court for a probable cause hearing, where Judge John Yackel ordered him held on a $25,000 cash bond.  According to the probable cause document, at 12:29 a.m. April 2, a man called the Sawyer County dispatch center. He stated he was at the house of his friend, Timothy Elkin, at 7 p.m. April 1 and walked into a bedroom which did not have working lights. There, he said, he saw his friend’s wife deceased without a head.  Sheriff’s deputies responded to the area and a deputy met with the caller. The caller said he was contacted by Timothy Elkin, who said he had not spoken with Cary Elkin in a few days and was concerned.

The caller told the deputy that that after he and Timothy located Cary deceased on the bedroom floor, they both left and agreed to call the police. He said he could not sleep and was “freaked out,” and decided to call the police because he knew that Timothy didn’t.  Deputies then went to the residence and announced “sheriff’s department,” but received no response inside. They entered, where a deputy observed blood on the bathroom floor and observed a female’s foot, which was dark and had no movement. They observed blood stains on the floor and bed, and skull fragments on the floor. Deputies cleared the last room and left the residence.  Deputies saw a note on the refrigerator which stated “I pistol whipped that bitch, worth it”, and “I ain’t payin’ for it.”  Deputies started a crime scene log. The friend of Timothy Elkin said Timothy was texting him and was on his way to Hayward to report the incident. A city police officer and LCO tribal police officer located Timothy exiting Kwik Trip at 1:30 a.m. initiated a traffic stop, detained Timothy and took him to the jail.  When contacted by a detective, Timothy Elkin stated he did locate Cary Elkin earlier in the day, however did not report the incident. Phone recording indicated that Timothy told Brandon he “needed a few hours to clean things up,” He did not report the corpse located at the Hungry Lake Lane house.