SHELL LAKE, Wis. -- A former Shell Lake, WI man is facing multiple felony charges including 2nd Degree Sexual Assault of a Child Under the Age of 16 following an investigation by the Washburn County Sheriff’s Office, the Shell Lake Police Department, and the Spooner Police Department.
Charges were filed in March 2018 against Andrew Zochert, and an arrest warrant was issued at that time, however, Zochert was not apprehended until just recently.
In September 2017, Washburn County law enforcement responded to a report of a sexual assault. Information was provided to law enforcement indicating that over a period of several weeks, Zochert had numerous text message exchanges with a minor female in which he repeatedly requested that she send him photos of a sexual nature. The minor female refused to send such photos. Copies of the text message conversations were provided to law enforcement.
A forensic analysis of the alleged victim's phone was conducted by a Spooner Officer and an excerpt from that was included in the Criminal Complaint. Some of the messages listed in the Criminal Complaint from Zochert included:
- “Honestly idk what I’m going to do I love you a lot but I want sex and sexual thing…”
- “I know u don’t want sex stuff”
- “I mean I just wanted a pic to start with”
- “And move on eventually from there”
- “Show me u love a lot ou pic or sex and I’ll date you otherwise we can’t date”
- “But it wouldn’t hurt to have the guts to send some out u love as a bf a pic”
- “I just wanted to get a pic so I know I can stay with you and you Will be there for me…”
- “I told u if you prove to me that you will try in a relationship with me I’ll date you (if you don’t tell anyone)....”
- “If u like sent a pic or proved you were willing to go the extra mile for me I would stay….”
- “Now I’m takeing a nap … So txt me with ur choice baby girl”
The alleged victim continued to deny the requests from the accused.
In addition to the text messages, on September 3, 2017, Zochert allegedly had contact with the minor female while he was intoxicated and put his hands under the female’s shirt and on her groin area, according to the criminal complaint.
A bail bond hearing was held on June 4, 2019, at which time the Court placed Zochert on a $10,000 cash bail bond which was posted that same day according to online circuit court records.
The criminal charges filed against Zochert include:
- 2 counts of Class C Felony Sexual Assault of a Child Under 16 Years of Age
- Class C Felony Use of a Computer to Facilitate a Child Sex Crime
- Class D Felony Child Enticement
- Class D Felony Solicitation of Possession of Child Pornography.
If convicted of all charges filed against him, Zochert faces a potential maximum sentence of over 150 years confinement in state prison.
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A preliminary hearing was held in Washburn County Circuit Court on July 22, 2019, regarding Zochert’s criminal charges, and the Court found probable cause to bind the case over for trial.
Zochert is scheduled to appear again in August 2019.
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.