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UPDATE: Bloomer Police Chief receives disciplinary suspension following illegal hunting charges

UPDATE
Bloomer (WQOW) — 
A day after the Bloomer Police Commission held a hearing on his future, News 18 has learned that disciplinary action has been handed down to Bloomer Police Chief Jared Zwiefelhofer.

Zwiefelhofer was ticketed for illegally shooting a deer during bow season in November 2018. According to the DNR report obtained by News 18 through an open records request, wardens said he used his department-issued AR-style .223 caliber gun in the illegal kill.

Tuesday night, the police commission held a hearing on his future. Zwiefelhofer was among those to testify, telling the commission he believed he could still be an effective officer.

Wednesday, the attorney for the police commission told News 18 they did not find evidence to support the charge that his department weapon was used in the illegal kill. However, they write that based on the totality of the circumstances, Zwiefelhofer will be placed on two weeks unpaid disciplinary suspension.


Bloomer (WQOW) — 
The Bloomer Police Commission is currently discussing the fate of its police chief Jared Zwiefelhofer.

News 18 learned through an open records request that Zwiefelhofer used his department-issued AR-style .223 caliber gun to illegally shoot a deer outside of gun season last November in Burnett County.

Zwiefelhofer is still currently serving as the Bloomer Police Chief.

More: Bloomer Police Chief charged with 3 hunting violations

On November 10, he told DNR wardens he was worried about, ‘getting in trouble’ and ‘making the paper’. He said if he admitted to shooting the deer with a gun it would cost him lots of money.

Two days later, DNR wardens found the deer dead in the woods. They skinned the hide and found a wound from an arrow and a hole from a .223 caliber rifle.

Later that month, Zwiefelhofer met with the DNR in Webster. While there, he admitted he injured the deer with his crossbow and shot at the deer with his gun three to four times. He said he wanted to expedite the recovery of the deer.

Zwiefelhofer also admitted to using bait near his stand and using a UTV with a loaded gun. Zweifelhofer had more than the allocated amount of bait near his blind.

He later pleaded no contest to those charges.

The DNR gave him three citations and revoked his hunting rights for two years.

Related Story: County Board looks to move past controversy

Tuesday, the Bloomer Police Commission held a hearing to decide if Zwiefelhofer should be punished, or even fired.

DNR wardens Pete Carlson and Russell Fell testified about the case before the commission. After a short recess, Zwifelhofer took the stand and told the commission he believed he could still be an effective officer.

Other people to testify before the commission included Bloomer mayor Jeff Steinmetz, Bloomer Fire Chief Brian D. Bleskacek, and city attorney Benjamin Laine.

The chair said the commission would not immediately release its ruling and would release its decision in a press release in a few days.

Stick with News 18 on air and online for the latest in this developing story.

Stephen Kelley

Stephen Kelley joined the News 18 team in August 2006. He is currently the Executive Producer and an Evening Anchor.

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