By LeAnn R. Ralph
MENOMONIE — A 57-year-old Boyceville woman who is a lifetime registered sex offender has made an initial appearance in Dunn County Circuit Court on two felony charges of a child sex offender working with children and strangulation.
Roberta R. Hitz made an initial appearance before Judge James Peterson September 27 on the two felony charges along with a misdemeanor charge of disorderly conduct.
According to the criminal complaint, Hitz was convicted of first degree child sexual assault in Dunn County in 1998, was under a lifetime sex offender registry and also had been charged in 2009 as a child sex offender working with children.
According to online court records, Judge Donna J. Muza sentenced Hitz to ten years in state prison on the first degree child sexual assault charge February 18, 1998. A second felony count of child sexploitation was dismissed.
Hitz pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor count of resisting or obstructing an officer in 2009 and was fined $204.50. Two separate felony charges of a child sex offender working with children and sex registry violation were dismissed on the basis of Hitz agreeing to have the court consider the two felony charges when being sentenced for another crime.
According to the criminal complaint, Boyceville police officers were dispatched to a disturbance on Second Street in Boyceville September 1. Witnesses had reported a possible physical disturbance, and officers were able to locate the vehicle that had been driven by one of the parties.
Boyceville Police Chief Greg Lamkin said that when he knocked on the door of a residence, the 29-year-old woman who answered appeared to have been crying. When asked if she had been involved in an altercation, the woman said that she had. The woman’s six-year-old son interrupted saying “they had choked her,” which he demonstrated by holding his hands up to his throat, according to the complaint.
The woman told Police Chief Lamkin she had left her son with Hitz and that she had paid Hitz to take care of him while she was at work.
Hitz had contacted the woman around noon and asked when she was coming to pick up her son. The woman said she would be at work until 1 p.m. but agreed to leave work early, according to the complaint.
Police Chief Lamkin reported that while he was talking to the child’s mother, her son was still crying and had tried to grab his mother’s right hand. The woman winced and told him that was her hurt finger and that she thought her right index finger may have been broken during the altercation.
Hitz later came to the Boyceville Police Department and told Police Chief Lamkin that it was clear the woman had been upset because she had been asked to leave work early and had been confrontational, according to the complaint.
The woman told Police Chief Lamkin that Hitz had watched her son three days a week for the last two weeks and that Hitz also was the primary caregiver for two other children throughout the summer while they were not in school.
A child sex offender working with children is a Class F felony that carries a penalty of up to a $25,000 fine and/or up to 12.5 years in prison. In addition, state statutes allow that if convicted, the state will seek to place Hitz on lifetime supervision.
Strangulation and suffocation is a Class H felony that carries a fine of up to $10,000 and/or up to six years in prison.
Disorderly conduct is a Class B misdemeanor that carries a fine of up to $1,000 and/or up to 90 days of incarceration.
Hitz is scheduled for another court hearing November 22.
Bail was set for Hitz in Dunn County Circuit Court September 2 with a $1,000 signature bond.