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Chetek man accused of breaking into home, ransacking it, trying to swim from police

Barron County (WQOW) – A Chetek man was arrested for allegedly breaking into a home and destroying things inside of it before trying to swim away.

Eric Hafner, 34, is charged with entry into a locked dwelling and criminal damage to property.

According to the criminal complaint, the homeowner got an alert on her phone from a security camera that there was movement inside her home. She looked at the video and knew it was Hafner inside of her home, so she called 911.

When police got there they found the home empty but “in disarray.” A deputy said the refrigerator and freezer was wide open and contents were strewn all over the floor. The deputy adds the living room was also in disarray with a TV and other electronics all over the floor. He added there was glass on the floor from the broken TV.

The complaint says the door frame into the home was broken.

Another deputy arrived at the home and noticed a white Corvette that appeared to have backed out of the driveway and into a ditch. The deputies said it looked like someone had run from the car.

The complaint says neighbors told police a man had run through their yards and was in the water.

Deputies went to the lake and yelled for Hafner to return to shore. They said he kept swimming. They yelled that he was under arrest and needed to return to the dock. They said Hafner kept swimming but eventually returned to the dock.

If convicted on both charges, Hafner faces 1 1/2 years in prison.

Clint Berge

Clint Berge is the Social Media & Digital Content Manager for Eau Claire’s Own WQOW News 18.
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