July 31, 2014

DOJ wants Burnett Co. man committed as sexually violent

The Wisconsin Department of Justice is alleging that a Burnett County man, who pleaded no contest nearly 18 years ago to incest with a child, is a sexually violent person who should be committed for treatment. In a petition filed Monday in Burnett County Circuit Court, DOJ seeks to have 54 year-old Warren S. Harer committed.

Harer pleaded no contest in November, 1994, to eight counts of incest with a child. He was found guilty but not guilty due to mental disease or defect, and was committed to the Department of Health Services for institutional care. Harer was scheduled for conditional release from Mendota Mental Health Institute in Madison, but a Burnett County judge ruled that he can be detained pending a trial on DOJ’s petition.

Wisconsin’s sexual predator law allows the state to commit a sexually violent person for control, care and treatment until the person no longer is considered sexually violent. The state’s petition alleges that Harer suffers from mental conditions which predispose him to sexual violence, and that he is dangerous, as his mental disorders make it likely that he will engage in future acts of sexual violence.