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MADISON - Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced today that on October 30, 2008, Bruce C. Williams, a Dane County resident, age 52, was ordered committed under Wisconsin's "sexually violent persons" commitment law (Chapter 980, Wis. Stats.) following a four day jury trial in Madison. Dane County Circuit Court Judge C. William Faust issued the commitment order following the jury's verdict.
Chapter 980 of the Wisconsin Statutes relates to the control, care and treatment of sexually violent persons. Under Wisconsin law, a person may be subject to a civil commitment when the person has been convicted of a sexually violent offense, has a mental disorder, and is dangerous to others because the mental disorder makes it likely he or she will commit further acts of sexual violence. A civil commitment is defined in Wisconsin law as commitment to the custody and care of the Department of Health Services for control, care, and treatment until the person is no longer considered sexually violent.
According to the Department of Justice's petition, in 1995 Williams was convicted in Dane County of Child Enticement for sexual conduct with a 7 year old boy. Evidence at the trial established that Williams also was convicted in Dane County in 1988 for second degree sexual assault of a woman at a restaurant, was convicted in Dane County in 1987 for attempted first degree sexual assault of a 9 year old girl, and was convicted in Dane County in 1975 of Indecent Behavior with a 13 year old girl. All of these crimes are considered sexually violent acts under Wisconsin law. Evidence further established that Williams currently suffers from the mental disorder of pedophilia, which predisposes him to engage in acts of sexual violence.
In the 1995 case, Williams was sentenced to 10 years in Wisconsin State Prison System, and was scheduled to be discharged from the Department of Corrections custody on November 10, 2005. Upon a recommendation from the Department of Corrections, the Department of Justice reviewed Williams' case and filed a petition on November 7, 2005, seeking to commit him as a sexually violent person.
Williams has now been committed to the custody of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services for care, control and treatment and is expected to be placed at the Sand Ridge Secure Treatment Center in Mauston, Wisconsin, for the purpose of receiving treatment.
Assistant Attorney General Gary A. Freyberg represented the state in this case.