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By LeAnn R. Ralph
MENOMONIE — A 39-year-old Boyceville man has pleaded no contest and has been found guilty in Dunn County on one felony count of election fraud concerning illegal voting.
Joshua D. Hitz appeared in Dunn County Circuit Court before Judge Rod W. Smeltzer November 9.
Hitz waived his right to have an attorney represent him, waived his right to a preliminary hearing and pleaded no contest, according to online court records.
Judge Smeltzer accepted Hitz’s plea, found him guilty, withheld sentencing and placed Hitz on two years of probation.
As a condition of probation, Hitz is not allowed to vote in any election.
Judge Smeltzer also ordered Hitz to pay $268 in court costs and a $250 DNA surcharge.
Hitz made an initial appearance in Dunn County Circuit Court on the felony count of election fraud June 16.
According to the complaint, during a partisan primary election on August 14, 2018, held at the Boyceville Community Center on Charlotte Street, a person whose first name, last name and date of birth matched a person on a list of offenders still under supervision at the time of the election according to the Wisconsin Department of Corrections.
When a statutorily-required post-election felony voter audit was conducted by the Wisconsin Elections Commission, the Commission found that Joshua D. Hitz’s name, address and signature on the supplemental poll matched the name and address of the offender who was on probation at the time of the election for a felony conviction, according to the complaint.
Hitz also had filled out and signed a voter registration application on the day of the election which gave his address and date of birth.
According to the Department of Corrections, Hitz was convicted on July 28, 2010, in St. Croix County of injury by the intoxicated use of a vehicle and was sentenced to seven and one-half years of probation. Hitz’s probation was extended one year on January 19, 2018, and his discharge date was January 28, 2019, according to the complaint.
Election fraud is a Class I felony that carries a possible penalty, upon conviction, of a fine of up to $10,000 and/or up to three and a half years in prison.