BURNETT COUNTY -- A Grantsburg, WI man has been sentenced on convictions of attempting to flee an officer and attempting to disarm an officer.

DrydenWire.com reported in March 2018, that Michael Denn was facing numerous criminal charges following an incident in February 2018 during which he attempted to flee from law enforcement.


An officer conducted a traffic stop on a van after observing erratic driving. The driver of the van was identified as Michael Denn. Officers on scene noticed that Denn was exhibiting signs of being under the influence of some type of substance. A Burnett County K9 unit was also on scene and began to attempt an exterior sniff of Denn’s van. A criminal complaint filed against Denn states that he shouted, “You’re not going to search my van!”, and ran to the driver’s door of the van. An Officer attempted to place Denn under arrest, but he broke away, knocked the Officer backward, got into the van and sped away.

After a short pursuit, Denn stopped the van in a driveway, but refused to open the door of the van or exit the van. Officers broke a window of the van with a baton; Denn lunged at an Officer, and a taser was deployed at Denn, who pulled the probes out of himself and began kicking at Officers. The incident continued with Denn breaking free from the Officers on scene and running between the vehicles, kicking at the officers and fighting with them as they attempted to subdue him.

Denn was ultimately taken into custody. Inside Denn’s van Officers found a glass methamphetamine pipe, butane torches, and various tools including gloves, headlamp, flashlight, pry bar, pry bar with handle, a spotlight, numerous rubber bands of the type commonly used by drug traffickers to bundle large amounts of cash, and 3 rolls of plastic wrap (which the criminal complaint also states is commonly used by drug traffickers to wrap large amounts of cash).

Charges of Class I Felony Possession of Methamphetamine, Class H Felony Battery to Law Enforcement Officer, Class I Felony Attempting to Flee or Elude a Traffic Officer, Class H Felony Attempt Disarming a Peace Officer, Class H Felony Escape, two counts of Misdemeanor Resisting an Officer, and Misdemeanor Possession of Drug Paraphernalia were filed against Denn.

Multiple non-criminal traffic citations were also filed against Denn, including Operating While Intoxicated 1st Offense, Reckless Driving-Endanger Safety, Operating Left of Center Line, Operate Without Insurance, Operate Without Registration Lamps, and Fail to Wear Seat Belt.

Online circuit court records show that at a hearing on June 19, 2020, the Court sentenced Denn on convictions of Class I Felony Attempting to Flee or Elude a Traffic Officer, Class H Felony Attempt Disarming a Peace Officer.  All the remaining charges filed against Denn regarding this incident had been previously dismissed but read in at a hearing in October 2019.

The Court heard sentencing arguments from both defense counsel for Denn and Prosecution for the State. Defense argued for a withheld sentence; 2 years of probation; and no conditional jail time. Prosecution argued for a withheld sentence; 4 years of probation; and 1 year of conditional jail time.

The Court ordered withheld sentences and 2 years of probation on each conviction to be served concurrently. Denn was also ordered to serve 9  months of conditional jail time on his conviction for Class H Felony Attempt Disarming a Peace Officer.


Denn may serve his jail term on electronic monitor with conditions that he maintain absolute sobriety and engage in any programming deemed appropriate by the Department of Probation and Parole. Denn will be subject to random drug testing while on monitor.

The Court also ordered Denn to pay restitution in an amount to be determined at a restitution hearing scheduled in August 2020.

In a separate case in May 2018, Denn was arrested on charges of allegedly stealing a bobcat.

DrydenWire.com reported in June 2018 that Denn was facing charges of Class G Felony Theft of Movable Property (greater than $10,000, less than $100,000); Class H Felony Receiving Stolen Property (greater than $5,000, less than $10,000); Class I Felony Possession of Methamphetamine; Class H Felony Bail Jumping; Misdemeanor Possession of THC (Marijuana); and Misdemeanor Possess Drug Paraphernalia related to the theft of the Bobcat and that subsequent investigation.

According to online circuit court records, the theft case was dismissed in March 2019 on the Court’s own motion, after a document was filed beyond a 30 day deadline. Online records indicate that the State may re-file the case.

Last Update: Jun 24, 2020 10:45 am CDT

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Crime & Court

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