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By LeAnn R. Ralph
MENOMONIE — An attorney representing a 22-year-old Wheeler man accused in the armed robbery of Peoples State Bank in Boyceville and U-fuel near Elk Mound is seeking to strike “use of a dangerous weapon” from the charges.
David J.R. Hoffman appeared in Dunn County Circuit Court February 4 with his attorney, Shelly Tomtschik, before Judge Rod W. Smeltzer.
Tomtschik told the court she wanted to schedule a court hearing for a motion she planned to file to “strike the enhancers” from the armed robbery charges.
Hoffman is charged with two felony counts of armed robbery with the enhancer of “use of a dangerous weapon” that appears as a modifier under Wisconsin statute 939.63(1)(c).
The “use of a dangerous weapon” modifier, upon conviction, could increase the maximum prison term by up to four years for each count.
Armed robbery, a Class C felony under Wisconsin state law, carries a possible penalty, upon conviction, of a fine of up to $100,000 and/or up to 40 years in prison.
A 30-minute hearing in Dunn County Circuit Court on the motion to strike the enhancers is scheduled for April 21 at 3 p.m.
Judge Smeltzer told Tomtschik that if a resolution in the case could be agreed upon by April 21, the date and time could also serve as a plea hearing for Hoffman.
According to the criminal complaints, Hoffmann admitted to investigators he had robbed both Peoples State Bank and U-Fuel.
At around 8:26 a.m. October 1, Boyceville Police Chief Greg Lamkin was dispatched to Peoples Bank in Boyceville on a report of an armed robbery.
A bank employee told Police Chief Lamkin the suspect had displayed a silver handgun and had demanded money. The suspect then fled from the bank on foot, the complaint states.
On October 11 at about 12:57 p.m., Dunn County Sheriff’s Department deputies were dispatched on a report of an armed robbery at U-Fuel on 850th Street in the Town of Elk Mound.
The U-Fuel clerk described the suspect as a 20 to 30 year old white male, between 5’9” and 5’10” tall, medium build, blue eyes and wearing a light tan jacket and blue jeans. The suspect had covered the lower part of his face with a bandana before he entered the U-Fuel store, the complaint states.
The robber had come from the area of the tattoo shop and the Juicy Shrimp Shack, to the south of U-Fuel, and had displayed a silver handgun, placed a bag on the counter and told the clerk to put the money from the cash register into it, according to the complaint.
Later that day, a woman contacted one of the deputies at the Dunn County Jail lobby and said she had received information from her daughter that David Hoffman was a suspect in the Peoples State Bank robbery in Boyceville on October 1. The woman said she had reviewed the photograph posted online from the U-Fuel robbery and that the suspect was Hoffman according to the complaint.
The woman said she was the owner of the Ford Escape, and Hoffman had been using it for approximately the last month. The woman also said Hoffman owns a silver handgun, the complaint states.
Hoffman remained in custody at the Dunn County jail as of the February 4 court hearing.
Bail was set at $10,000 cash at the bail hearing October 14, 2019, for the U-Fuel robbery.
Hoffman told the court he would only be able to obtain $1,000 in cash from his family.
Judge Smeltzer also set bail at $10,000 cash for the People’s State Bank robbery at the October 16 hearing and with the condition that Hoffman is to have no contact with Peoples State Bank in Boyceville.
The bail amounts in both cases are concurrent, meaning Hoffman would have to post $10,000 in cash to get out of custody.