Deputy reinstated following August shooting
Lincoln County Sheriff Ken Schneider has reported that Deputy Travis Watruba has returned to full duty and is once again serving the residents and visitors of Lincoln County.
On August 24, 2019, deputies from Lincoln County investigated a domestic battery incident which occurred at a seasonal residence in the Town of Corning. The suspect, Daniel E. Boldt, age 46 is originally from the Waukesha County area but had been staying at a cabin outside of Merrill.
Deputies learned that despite prior felony convictions for two separate cases of sexual assault to a child and another for burglary Boldt was armed with numerous firearms.
Deputies had set up surveillance in the area of the cabin and Deputy Watruba saw a vehicle matching the description of Boldt’s leaving the residence. Watruba conducted a traffic stop at 5:38 p.m. on State Rd 64 near Mill Rd in the Town of Scott just west of the City of Merrill. Once he had stopped his vehicle Boldt emerged from his vehicle and displayed a shotgun which then caused Deputy Watruba to use deadly force.
Boldt was flown from the scene to the trauma center at Aspirus. He was eventually released from the hospital and has since been held in the Marathon County Jail.
The shooting was investigated by the Wisconsin Department of Criminal Investigations. A final report was prepared, and Lincoln County District Attorney Galen Bayne-Allison ruled the shooting a lawful use of force.
Boldt had been charged in Lincoln County Court with offenses related to the domestic and with five felony counts of being in the possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. These counts encompass the gun Boldt displayed to Deputy Watruba, a handgun which was found in the vehicle after the shooting and the three other firearms found at the cabin.
On Wednesday, October 9, 2019 the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Wisconsin announced that a federal grand jury has indicted Boldt for being a felon in possession of a firearm. Assistant U.S. Attorney Rita M. Rumbelow is handling the prosecution, and the indictment was the result of an investigation by the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
If convicted, Boldt could face a maximum penalty of ten years in a federal prison.
Deputy Watruba has served Lincoln County for 13 years where he is assigned the duties of the Recreation Deputy