SAWYER COUNTY -- A criminal complaint has been filed, charging a man from Hayward, WI, with sexually assaulting a person who was under the influence of a substance.
On April 29, 2021, shortly after 2a Sawyer County Dispatch received a report of a domestic disturbance with sounds of items being thrown and a female shouting, “Get off of me”.
Sawyer County Sheriff’s Office and Hayward Police Department responded to the location of the reported disturbance. A man, identified as Nathan Conover, came to the door, but would not open it, instead only lifting the blind. The law enforcement officer could see through the window a woman, wrapped in only a blanket, going to the back door of the residence, where she exited the residence with another law enforcement officer.
The woman told law enforcement that during the night, she and Conover had an argument, during which she locked herself in the bathroom. When she would not come out of the bathroom, Conover broke the door off its hinges. She told law enforcement that she and Conover had used heroin throughout the night, which led to her being unconscious for a period of time. When she awoke sometime later, she was completely unclothed and experiencing a great amount of pain, which caused her to believe that she had been sexually assaulted while under the influence of heroin.
When the woman questioned Conover about what had happened, he allegedly became angry and assaulted her, knocking her down, kicking her, and putting his hands around her throat. She stated that she was struggling and shouting as much as she was able, and it was only a short time after that law enforcement arrived at the residence.
The woman also stated to law enforcement that she believed that Conover may have utilized Narcan on her as she was possibly overdosing on the heroin.
The criminal complaint filed against Conover states that responding officers found the bathroom door had been ripped off its hinges; they also found used drug paraphernalia, 2 doses of Narcan, clothing, and other items that matched the woman’s description of what occurred during the incident.
Officers asked Conover what happened, and he stated that he and the woman had been watching a movie and fallen asleep on the floor; going on to say that there was no argument, only that the movie must have been loud.
Conover was taken into custody and when law enforcement asked him about the Narcan located in the residence, he looked down, and said, ‘I’m in trouble, aren’t I’, and did not answer any additional questions, according to the criminal complaint.
Charges of Class C Felony 2nd Deg. Sex Assault-Intoxicated Victim; Class H Felony Bail Jumping; Misdemeanor Domestic Battery; and Misdemeanor Domestic Disorderly Conduct have been filed against Conover. Online circuit court records show that at a hearing on April 30, Conover was placed on a $25,000 cash bond. Conover appeared most recently on May 11, 2021, for a preliminary examination hearing, at which the Court found probable cause to bind his charges over for trial.
Conover is also charged with Class I Felony Possession of THC (2nd+ Offense); and Misdemeanor Possess Drug Paraphernalia in a separate Sawyer County Circuit Court case filed against him on April 7, 2021. He is scheduled to appear again in June 2021.
Pursuant to the direction of the Wisconsin Supreme Court, as found in Supreme Court Rule 20:3.6, Trial Publicly, you are advised that a charge is merely an accusation and that a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.