A 20-year-old Eau Claire man was bound over for trial following a preliminary hearing May 7 on two counts of exposing his genitals to two juveniles who were ice fishing on Boom Lake in December. Both charges include the repeater enhancer.
Jason N. Hawley Jr. appeared via video in Branch I before judge Patrick O'Melia, with other participants also appearing by video or telephone.
According to the police reports attached to the criminal complaint filed in the case, Hawley allegedly twice exposed himself to two juveniles who were ice fishing on Boom Lake on Dec. 23, 2019. After the incident, which Hawley allegedly tried to blame on "using acid," he allegedly threatened the juveniles with physical harm if they reported what happened to police.
Hawley was taken into custody on April 2 and booked into the Oneida County Jail.
During the preliminary hearing, Oneida County Sheriff's Department detective sergeant Brian Barbour testified about what he learned during his investigation into the alleged incident.
At the conclusion of the hearing, O'Melia ruled that probable cause exists that Hawley may have committed a felony and bound him over for trial. After district attorney Michael Schiek said the information he intended to file would contain the same charges as the complaint, Hawley's attorney Mary Roth Burns agreed to proceed to arraignment and entered a not guilty plea.
Although O'Melia set a $7,500 signature bond at the initial appearance April 3, Hawley remains in the Oneida County Jail on a probation hold through Chippewa County.
A pre-trial conference is scheduled for June 23.
Each of the charges is a Class I felony, which carries a maximum prison sentence of up to 3 1/2 years, but the repeater enhancer could add up to an additional 4 years in prison.
Jamie Taylor may be reached via email at jamie@rivernews online.com.
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