WAUSAU, Wisconsin – A man who prosecutors say was tied up, humiliated and assaulted by four women as payback for his cheating ways was accused Thursday of hitting his daughter and stealing the ashes of his estranged wife's dead father.
The 36-year-old man was charged in a Wisconsin court with felony child abuse and three misdemeanors — theft, unlawful phone use and harassment — according to a criminal complaint.
Four women, including the man's wife and two women alleged to be his lovers, are accused of luring him to a hotel room in Stockbridge a week ago before tying him to a bed, blindfolding him and gluing his penis to his stomach.
Those charged in the case are: Wendy Sewell, 43, of Kaukauna; Therese Ziemann, 48, of Menasha, Michelle Belliveau, 43, of Neenah, and the man's wife. The Associated Press is not naming the man to protect his identity as an alleged victim of sexual assault.
Each is charged with being party to false imprisonment, a felony, and one is charged with fourth-degree sexual assault, a misdemeanor.
A judge on Thursday set the man's bail at $5,000 cash and ordered a preliminary hearing for Aug. 14, according to online court records. The man's attorney, public defender Margaret Vinz, did not immediately return a phone message Thursday seeking comment.
The maximum punishment for the child abuse charge is six years in prison.
The man has not lived with his wife since September, and on July 26, their twin 8-year-old daughters visited him at a Wisconsin motel, the criminal complaint said.
The complaint gives the following account of the allegations against the man:
One girl told investigators that when her father found out that her mother had learned a woman had been present and painted the girl's fingernails during a visitation earlier in the day, the father got angry and beat the girl.
The girl's sister told investigators she saw her father slapping her sister and stating, "God I hate you." The girl suffered a swollen eye and a knot on her forehead.
The father told investigators "he plays rough with the kids and may have hit her."
In a voice mail message to his wife on July 31 — the day after he was tied up in the motel room — the man indicated he had her father's ashes and that if he did not receive a call from her, he was going to throw a "cup of them" away every hour.
The wife told investigators her father's ashes were kept in an urn in her home and must have been taken last Thursday or Friday.
The man told investigators he had the urn, and he gave it to police.
One of the man's alleged lovers told investigators the man remarked to her that he wanted to confront his wife by ramming her vehicle off the road while she delivered newspapers and "bash her with a rock."
The man told investigators he made the statement but was not serious. He acknowledged making harassing calls and text messages "to get a rise" out of his estranged wife.
The man also discussed with his alleged lover a plan to take out a $1 million life insurance policy on his wife because he had a friend who had been in Iraq and was a sharpshooter.
The man said the plot would require him to be shot but not killed and that the only flaw was that he had told the lover about it "and he would have to kill her too."
The man told investigators there had been talk about a life insurance policy but that he lied about knowing a sharpshooter.