Second defendant convicted in 2009 deer-snowmobile thrill kill caseThe second defendant in the 2009 deer-snowmobile thrill kill case that ignited a statewide outcry from citizens and groups was sentenced to six months in jail, 30 months of probation and $6,324 in fines for his convictions including three felony charges of cruelty to animals.
WAUPACA -- The second defendant in the 2009 deer-snowmobile thrill kill case that ignited a statewide outcry from citizens and groups was sentenced to six months in jail, 30 months of probation and $6,324 in fines for his convictions including three felony charges of cruelty to animals.
Nicholas Hermes, 26, of Waupaca, on Tuesday (Feb. 7) was sentenced for his role in the killing of several deer by using a snowmobile in the Town of Lind in Waupaca County in January 2009. Hermes was sentenced by Waupaca County Circuit Court Judge Raymond Huber.
Huber's sentencing order includes the possibility Hermes' three felonies could be expunged and he be allowed to possess a firearm if he adequately completes his probation period of 30 months.
On December 20, Hermes entered a plea deal that resulted in some of the charges being dismissed along with no contest pleas on other charges. In addition to his jail, probation and fines, Hermes also must pen a letter to the Waupaca County high schools urging all to make sound and ethical law-abiding decisions when taking wild game during hunting and fishing outings -- and that there be no poaching. The letter is to make an example of how Hermes' poor decisions led to a lot of trouble for himself.
Hermes also will lose his Department of Natural Resources license privileges to hunt and fish for three years. And, Hermes also cannot have any contact with the two brothers – Rory and Robbie Kuenzi – who were involved in the incident.
"This has really been a long road that started in January 2009 -- and we are just on the end of completing this case," Conservation Warden Theodore Dremel of Waupaca said, lauding the collaborative effort behind this deer case. "The conservation wardens and other law enforcement agencies worked this case. And the public provided information and organizations provided reward dollars. As a result of these collaborative efforts, we were able to bring these three individuals to court where they could be held responsible."
Rory Kuenzi, 27, of Weyauwega was sentenced to 11 years in prison followed by six years of extended supervision by Circuit Judge Phil Kirk in November 2011. Kuenzi entered no contest pleas to three counts of felony mistreatment of animals as well as no contest pleas to two counts of illegally possessing deer.
Kuenzi will serve the 11-year sentence concurrently with the 23-year prison term he is serving for his conviction of killing a pedestrian while driving under the influence of alcohol in 2004.
The second brother, Robbie Kuenzi, also 26, is currently scheduled to have a jury trial in Waupaca County in April.
-- J.M. Haas, Bureau of Law Enforcement