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JACKSON COUNTY -- The Court has accepted Michelle Thibodeau’s plea to a reduced charge stemming from her 2021 arrest by the Wisconsin State Patrol for operating a motor vehicle under the influence with 5 children in the car.

Thibodeau, 31, from Dresser, WI, was arrested on May 15, 2021, after the Wisconsin State Patrol Post received a request for a welfare check on a child.

The child was in a vehicle with a friend and the friend’s family and they were traveling to the Wisconsin Dells. The child had sent text messages to her father stating that the adults in the vehicle were smoking drugs and that there were other children in the vehicle as well. The child also texted her father the milepost information as the vehicle passed them.

State Patrol was able to use this information, locate the vehicle, and conduct a traffic stop. There were 5 children located in the vehicle, and the driver was identified as Thibodeau. She showed signs of impairment, and standardized field sobriety testing showed that she was under the influence of a substance.

Thibodeau was arrested for operating a motor vehicle while under the influence of a controlled substance 2nd offense with minors in the vehicle, possession of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia. The vehicle was towed from the scene and Officers stayed with the children until they were turned over to a responsible adult.

Online circuit court records show that in February 2022 a criminal complaint was filed against Thibodeau charging her with Misdemeanor Operate with Restricted Controlled Substance (2nd w/ Minor Pass. < 16 yrs.). Thibodeau appeared most recently on July 11, 2022, for a plea and sentencing hearing regarding her charges.

The Hon. Daniel Diehn accepted Thibodeau’s plea of No Contest to an amended charge of Misdemeanor Operating While Under the Influence. The charge of Misdemeanor Operate with Restricted Controlled Substance (2nd w/ Minor Pass. < 16 yrs. was dismissed. At the time of this post no details were listed in online court records as to the reason for the amended charge.

Judge Diehn accepted a joint sentencing recommendation proposed by both the State and defense counsel for Thibodeau and ordered Thibodeau to serve 5 days in county jail, pay​​ a fine of $1379.00, and complete an alcohol assessment and driver safety plan.

Last Update: Jul 14, 2022 10:13 am CDT

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Crime & Court

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