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St. Croix Co. woman enters plea to amended charge in Boyceville theft

By Cara L. Dempski

MENOMONIE — A St. Croix County woman entered a guilty plea to amended charges related to her involvement in a Boyceville theft last year.

Hope A. Chovan, age 19 of Somerset, pleaded guilty to receiving stolen property valued at less than $2,500 during an October 13 hearing in front of Dunn County Judge Rod Smeltzer.

She was originally charged with one count of burglary of a building or dwelling as a party to a crime after being named as a suspect in the theft of approximately $3,000 of electronic equipment owned by the Boyceville Area Fire Department.

Chovan was one of six people implicated in the theft according to the original criminal complaint filed by the Dunn County District Attorney’s Office. The complaint indicated she was one of several people who assisted in removing speakers, a sound board, and a microphone from a concession stand near the tractor pull site at the Boyceville Municipal Airport in 2016.

According to the original complaint, one suspect interviewed during the course of the investigation Chovan, and her sister Hayley, provided a truck to move the stolen items from the concession stand to the nearby home of another suspect. The original complaint states the speakers were later sold in an online transaction, and another suspect delivered them to a buyer in Menomonie.

Receiving stolen property is considered a class A misdemeanor in Wisconsin, and carries maximum penalties of a fine no more than $10,000, no more than nine months imprisonment, or both. Chovan is subject to one year probation on a withheld sentence as part of her plea agreement, and Smeltzer was willing to allow Chovan to serve her probation in St. Croix County.

Judge Smeltzer scheduled a restitution hearing for Chovan at 9:45 a.m. November 17 in Dunn County Circuit Court.