NEW INFORMATION: Investigators meet with parents of possible victims

By: WEAU 13 News Staff Email
By: WEAU 13 News Staff Email

If you have information that could help investigators, call Detective Don Henning of the Eau Claire County Sheriff’s Office at 715-839-5103.

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) - UPDATE: We have new information on the investigation into a swimming coach accused of taking inappropriate images of children.

Eau Claire County Sheriff, Ron Cramer, tells us investigators met with the parents of some possible victims Tuesday night. He says officers found thousands of images on a cell phone, thumb drive, and computer belonging to 32-year-old Daniel Weggel.

Weggel's body was found in Lake Wissota Friday after an apparent suicide.

Sheriff Cramer says all of the images are of girls between the ages of 8 and 17. Investigators are trying to determine if the girls are local or if the images were downloaded from somewhere else. He says there was nudity on some of the images.

Weggel was an assistant swimming coach for the Eau Claire School District and taught piano lessons.

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8/27/13:
New details emerged in the criminal investigation of a man who died at Lake Wissota last week.

Thirty-two-year-old swimming coach Daniel Weggel of Eau Claire died from an apparent suicide Friday after telling police about inappropriate pictures saved in his home.

Last week, a girl reported finding a cellphone, recording her, in her room.
Sheriff Ron Cramer said that sparked an investigation focused on Weggel who apparently committed suicide the next day.

It's a shame whenever somebody who's in a position of authority lets students down.

Weggel, who gave children piano lessons, was arrested for invasion of privacy and was interviewed Friday.

“He acknowledged the fact that he was doing this, and that there was a stash of photos that would probably be incriminating for him if viewed by us,” Cramer said.

Without a criminal record and no signs he would not appear in court, officers let him go after he was booked, Cramer said.

Investigators found nude photos of girls on saved on Weggel's thumb drives, a computer and cellphone at his home, officers said.

Hours later, officers said Weggel drowned in Lake Wissota in an apparent suicide, with a cinderblock tied to his leg.

Wayne Mielke said he's lived next to Weggel in the same duplex building for about nine years, and that Weggel was always kind and showed no unusual signs.

“He was just friendly, courteous and considerate,” Mielke said.

“We were very disappointed, disgusted in what he did, but we still don't think he should've taken his own life. Nothing could be so bad as doing that.”

Eau Claire Memorial Principal David Oldenberg said Weggel coached at the school for about seven years and hopes anyone who needs help will seek it out.

“Any student feeling grief, loss or frustration should visit with their parents first, then should come forward and seek resources in the building,” Oldenberg said.

For the sheriff's department, the investigation continues.

“Our concerned is, are any of the images going to surface later. And where did he have them stored? Or did he share them with someone?” Cramer said.

“I hope they find out what he was really doing, and if anyone else was involved in it, and that all the evidence could be disposed of, so that it won't be displayed anywhere else,”

Cramer says it's unknown how many victims there are but all are underage. He said there are no other suspects at this time.

The sheriff's department said it believes other families "may wish to report illegal conduct" in connection to its investigation. It's reviewing the case, meeting with families who may have been victims of crimes, and coming up with a process for them to cope with the outcome of the case.


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