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Probation review scheduled in June for Boyceville assault case

By LeAnn R. Ralph

MENOMONIE — A probation review hearing has been scheduled in Dunn County Circuit Court in June for a 34-year-old Hammond man who pleaded guilty in a sexual assault case involving a six-year-old and an eight-year-old in Boyceville.

Michael Allen Powell appeared before the Honorable William Stewart, Jr. on April 22 for a probation review scheduled at the request of Powell’s probation agent.

Powell initially was charged with four counts of first-degree sexual assault but pleaded guilty September 14 last year to the amended charge of one count of causing mental harm to a child in the case involving an eight-year-old girl and six-year-old boy.

According to the attorney who represented Powell, the children’s aunt and mother questioned the children’s allegations.

The grandmother, however, testified at a preliminary hearing that she believed her grandchildren.

Judge Stewart sentenced Powell to six months in jail and seven years of probation.

Although the probation review hearing was scheduled at the request of Powell’s probation agent, the agent was not in court for the April 22 hearing.

Judge Stewart attempted to call the probation agent and discovered that the agent was out doing home visits the day of the court hearing.

Powell appeared in court without the benefit of an attorney.

Donna Burger, who had previously been assigned to represent Powell through the public defender’s office, said that Powell had been under the impression she was still representing him in the case.

Burger said that just prior to the court hearing, she had checked and discovered that Powell still qualifies for a public defender.

The probation review is now scheduled for June 21 at 9:30 a.m. before Judge Stewart.

A $20,000 cash bond was set in the case in January of 2012 after Powell was arrested and was reduced to a $2,000 cash bond in April of 2012.

Powell was unable to come up with the bond money and remained in custody from the time of his arrest last January until the plea hearing in September.