Man charged in Rice Lake vehicle theft; reported assault of teenager under investigation

Courtesy: Barron County Jail
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RICE LAKE, Wis. (RICE LAKE POLICE DEPARTMENT NEWS RELEASE) -- On Sunday, August 3,2014, a Rice Lake citizen reported her vehicle stolen from her residence on the city's east side sometime during the early morning hours. On August 4, 2014, the vehicle was located, abandoned just outside the city limits.

On Monday, August 4,2014, at approximately 12:15 pm, Rice Lake Police took a complaint from a 15 year old male that claimed he was assaulted by two unknown male assailants on the south side of the city. The juvenile received minor injuries as a result of the incident.

A subsequent investigation into the assault and during an interview with an investigator, the juvenile admitted that he and his accomplices, 18 year old Gunner Asplund and two other juveniles, all from Rice Lake, were involved in a crime spree during the early morning hours where they stole the aforementioned vehicle on August 3rd.

After taking the vehicle, the suspects entered numerous other vehicles throughout the city and stole valuables. It was reported to police that while targeting their next vehicle, they were confronted by the two male assailants when the assault incident occurred. Some stolen property was recovered and it is believed all of the victims of these theft crimes have been determined.

Asplund was later taken into custody and transported to the Barron County Jail pending formal charges from the District Attorney's Office for his involvement in the thefts. He is scheduled to appear in Barron County Circuit Court today at 1 pm. The three juvenile males are being referred to the Barron County Department of Health and Human Services as a party to crime in this incident.

The investigation into the assault of the 15 year old male remains under investigation by the Rice Lake Police Department.

The department encourages citizens to remain vigilant and to report suspicious behavior to law enforcement and to also lock their properties to deter these types of theft crimes.

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