Criminal charges have been filed against an inmate of Burnett County Jail after jail officials located a shank concealed in his cell.

According to the criminal complaint filed in Burnett County Circuit Court against Sheldon J. Thayer, a fight occurred in the Burnett County Jail on the evening of September 18, 2017. Following the fight, jail officials conducted searches of the cells located in the block where the fight occurred. 

A metal shank was found in a tote in Thayer's jail cell. The criminal complaint goes on to state that five other shanks were also located. It is not known at this time if any criminal charges have been filed regarding those shanks.

The criminal complaint filed against Thayer goes on to state that on September 19, 2017, when officers interviewed another inmate of the Burnett County Jail who had been involved in the fight, that inmate stated that Thayer had shown him a gold colored metal shank. The inmate also stated to officers that Thayer told him that if he told anyone about the shank, Thayer would kill him. This inmate also told officers that another inmate was talking about using shanks to take the jail over.

Thayer is charged with Class I Felony Deliver Illegal Articles to Inmate under Wisconsin State Statute Sec. 302.095(2) which states that any person who conceals any article or thing in or about a jail contrary to the rules of the jail, and without the knowledge of the sheriff or other keeper of the jail, is guilty of a Class I Felony.

Online circuit court records indicate that Thayer also has an open criminal case in Sawyer County Circuit Court charging him with Misdemeanor Resisting or Obstructing an Officer. The details of that case are not known at this time.

Sheldon Thayer has been previously convicted of 4th Degree Sexual Assault and Felony Intimidate a Witness according to online circuit court records, and the Wisconsin Department of Corrections Sexual Offender Registry indicates that Thayer is required to register as a sex offender until the year 2031.

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