Abigail Bostwick photo
Evan Oungst, left, walks to the defense table during a January appearance in Iron County Circuit Court.
5/7/2019 7:30:00 AM Court records outline plea agreement in Oungst case
Abigail Bostwick Of The Lakeland Times
An Arbor Vitae man was expected to plead guilty Monday afternoon to amended charges of homicide and delivery of prescription drugs as well as harboring a felon.
A plea hearing for Evan Oungst, 29, was scheduled to take place after this edition went to press.
Substitute Judge Kevin Kline of Price County is presiding over the case, which was filed Iron County Circuit Court.
Oungst is charged with first degree intentional homicide (with use of dangerous weapon as party to a crime) and hiding a corpse (as habitual criminal and party to a crime) in addition to 14 felony charges in a separate case of harboring/aiding a felon and providing prescription drugs during and after the murder of Wayne Valliere, Jr., 25, Lac du Flambeau.
Oungst has been accused of taking part in the shooting murder of Valliere in December 2017 and hiding the body. Also arrested in the drug-fueled crime were Richard Allen, 28; Joseph Lussier, 28; James Lussier, 20; and Curtis Wolfe, 27; all of Lac du Flambeau, all fellow tribal members of the victim.
Witnesses said the men took Valliere to the rural woods of Mercer while threatening and yelling at him and "feeding" him meth and prescription drugs. The others all were reportedly "high" on the same substances.
Oungst has been represented by Thomas Wilmouth and Amy O'Melia, Hazelhurst, and Mike Steinle of Milwaukee. The plea agreement was filed May 2. Also filed were amended criminal complaints. The first amended the murder charge to conspiracy to commit first degree intentional homicide as party to a crime armed with a dangerous weapon. The second amended criminal complaints in both cases had some redacted information that implicated Oungst from parts of the crimes, including beating Valliere and hiding his body.
According to the plea agreement, Oungst is expected to plead guilty to a charge of second degree reckless homicide by omission as well as seven counts of harboring/aiding a felony and four counts of manufacture/deliver a prescription drug.
Dismissed but read in for sentencing would have been a charge of hiding a corpse and the remaining counts of providing a prescription drug as party to a crime and one charge harboring/aiding a felon. The Vilas County felony count of harboring/aiding a felon and resisting/obstructing an officer was also to be dismissed.
The guilty pleas would mean Oungst confesses to providing directions to the homicide scene to prevent the apprehension of all the defendants, hiding clothing and shoes of Allen worn during the murder, driving Allen out of town to help him flee possible arrest post-murder and providing prescription drugs to Valliere, Wolfe and both Lussier brothers.
The proposed sentence was 25 years in prison for the homicide change (15 incarcerated, 10 on extended supervision) and up to $100,000 in fines. On the remaining charges, no more than 30 to 40 aggregate years' imprisonment were proposed, following a pre-sentence investigation.
If the plea deal is accepted by Kline, Oungst would be held in the Iron County Jail until his sentencing. His lawyers have requested he be kept separate from Wolfe, who is in the same facility awaiting trial.
Oungst has been on house and GPS monitoring at his parent's home in Arbor Vitae on a $25,000 cash bond.
Allen and Joseph Lussier were found guilty following a jury trial last August.
After testifying against his brother and Allen, James Lussier pled guilty to lesser charges and was sentenced to 15 years prison.
Wolfe, who also testified against Allen and Lussier, is set for jury trial in December.
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