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MADISON - Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen announced today that the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) filed a petition under the state's sexual predator law against a Burnett County man.
The petition was filed on August 9, 2010, in Burnett County Circuit Court and alleges that Elijah Daniels, 55 years of age, is a sexually violent person and should be committed for treatment. A probable cause hearing will be held in Burnett County Circuit Court at a later date.
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 DOJ petition, in 1993 Daniels was convicted in Burnett County of Second Degree Sexual Assault, False Imprisonment and Battery and was sentenced to a total of twelve years in prison. Daniels was scheduled to be discharged from the Department of Corrections on August 17, 2010, but will be detained at a Department of Health Services facility while awaiting trial.
The state's petition alleges that Daniels suffers from a mental condition that predisposes him to engage in acts of sexual violence. The petition also alleges that Daniels is dangerous as his mental disorder makes it likely that he will engage in future acts of sexual violence. A petition is only an allegation and a finding of probable cause only allows the state's case to move forward. Daniels is legally presumed not to be a sexually violent person unless and until the state proves him to be a sexually violent person at a trial.
Assistant Attorney General Don Latorraca represents the state in this case.