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  • Rice Lake Chronotype

    Man accused of threatening law enforcement pleads not guilty due to mental illness

    By By The Chronotype staff,

    29 days ago

    A Chetek man accused of threatening Barron County Sheriff’s Department employees online and making a comment referring to one of the officers who died a year ago in the line of duty has pleaded not guilty due to mental illness.

    Matthew D. Gaede, 34, was charged on March 13 with felony making a terrorist threat in Barron County Circuit Court.

    The defendant appeared at his arraignment on Friday, and the defense entered a not guilty plea and not guilty plea by reason of mental diseases and defect.

    Gaede is free after signing a $10,000 cash bond on April 16, and a status hearing has been scheduled for June 5.

    If convicted, Gaede faces a maximum penalty of a $10,000 fine and 3½ years in prison.

    According to the criminal complaint, a Barron County Sheriff’s Department detective received information from Sheriff Chris Fitzgerald that he had received a message from the defendant. The message read: “f—- barron co touch my check for child support I will make world news you better think about it.” Another comment on the picture for fallen Police Officer Emily Breidenbach stated “Thank God your [sic] dead.”

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