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Colten Treu changes pleas, found guilty of homicide

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Chippewa County (WQOW) - The man accused of killing three Girl Scouts and a mother changed his plea in court on Monday to no contest.

Prosecutors say on November 3, 2018, Treu was huffing aerosol fumes when his truck went off the road and hit the Girl Scouts as they picked up litter on the side of the road.

Police said after the tragic crash, Treu drove home and went to a party. Since then, he has been in police custody.

As the legal process played out, Treu pleaded not guilty and requested the judge hear the case and decide his guilt or innocence claiming it would be impossible to find an impartial jury because of extensive media coverage.

On December 6, after that request was denied, his attorneys told the judge they expected Treu to change his plea.

On Monday, he changed his plea to no contest on counts 1-4. Counts 1-4 are homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle. He pleaded guilty to Count 9, hit and run involving great bodily harm.

Based on his no contest plea on counts 1-4 and his guilty plea on count 9, the judge found him guilty on those five charges. The other six charges were dismissed but read in.

Counts 1-4 carry a maximum sentence of 40 years for each count, meaning Treu could spend the rest of his life in prison.

A pre-sentence investigation is due by February 21.

Sentencing is set for March 10-11. At that hearing, we could hear victim impact statements from those impacted by this case. Treu will also have the opportunity to address the court.

Clint Berge

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