Damian Hauschultz was fourteen years old when he fatally beat to death seven year old Ethan Hauschultz. According to court documents Ethan was a foster child who was sent to the Hauschultz household after being removed from his parental home due to abuse. Ethan Hauschultz would be severely beaten as he was forced to drag a forty five pound log around the backyard as a form of punishment. Ethan Hauschultz would die from a combination of hypothermia, a broken rib and blunt force trauma. Damian Hauschultz would plead guilty to reckless homicide. This teen killer will be sentenced in September. Damian Hauschultz parents are due to stand trial for their role in the murder
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Damian Hauschultz is currently in a county jail in Wisconsin until he is sentenced
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A Manitowoc County teenager pleaded guilty Friday to first-degree reckless homicide in the 2018 killing of Ethan Hauschultz, his 7-year-old foster brother.
In a 20-minute hearing conducted by video, 17-year-old Damian Hauschultz acknowledged that his actions on April 20, 2018, caused the injuries that killed Ethan. Doctors who examined the boy said he suffered hypothermia, a broken rib, and blunt-force trauma to various parts of his body after Damian repeatedly kicked, prodded and struck him with a belt as he carried out a punishment that involved lugging a 44 1/2-pound piece of wood around their snowy yard.
Ethan, his brother and sister had been placed with Damian’s family after Manitowoc County Human Services workers removed them from their parents’ home because of neglect and abuse.
Damian, a recent high school graduate who wore a red-and-yellow-themed Harry Potter T-shirt, repeatedly answered “yes” and “yes, ma’am” as Judge Jerilyn Dietz asked if he truly wanted to plead guilty, and if he understood he was waiving his right to a trial.
Damian, who was 14 at the time of the killing, is to be sentenced on Sept. 2. Prosecutor Jacalyn LaBre and defense attorney Russell Jones have agreed to recommend 12 to 17 years in prison, but Dietz does not have to follow that recommendation.
The maximum penalty for first-degree reckless homicide is 60 years: 40 years in prison followed by 20 of probation.
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A 17-year-old Manitowoc County youth avoids trial by pleading guilty to First Degree Reckless Homicide in the 2018 death of Ethan Hauschultz.
Damian Hauschultz had also been charged with Three counts of Child Abuse-Intentionally Causing Harm and Three Counts of Substantial Battery-Intentionally Causing Bodily Harm, which were dismissed but read into the record Friday by Manitowoc County Circuit Judge Jerilyn Dietz.
Authorities responded to a call at a local hospital on April 7th 2018 for an unresponsive child suffering from multiple injuries. The original complaint stated that 50-year-old Timothy Hauschultz instructed Damian to make the 7-year-old Ethan, a foster child in their Town of Newton home, carry a nearly 45 lbs. log around their yard as a form of punishment.
Damian also allegedly shoveled snow on the child along with standing on him and striking him nearly one hundred times.
Ethan was pronounced dead later that evening with hypothermia, multiple blunt force trauma and a broken rib as official causes of death.
Damian’s guilty plea means no trial will be held. He’s free on bail and will be sentenced September 2nd at 1:30 p.m.
Meanwhile, Timothy Hauschultz remains in the County Jail on charges of Felony Murder, Child Abuse, Battery and Contribute to the Delinquency Death.
His trial is scheduled for December while 38-year-old Tina McKeever-Hauschultz was found guilty earlier this year and sentenced to five years in prison on charges of Failure/Prevent Mental Harm to a Child and Child Abuse/Failure/Prevent Great Harm- all felonies.
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Tina McKeever-Hauschultz was sentenced Friday to five years in prison for her role in the events leading up to and failing to prevent the death of Ethan Hauschultz, 7.
The boy was beaten, forced to carry a 44-pound log and was buried in the snow before he died at in April 2018, prosecutors say.
Two others were charged in the case:
- Damian Hauschultz, now 17, is charged with reckless homicide and other counts. He allegedly supervised Ethan’s punishment that day. A scheduling conference will be held April 5. No trial date has been set.
- Timothy Hauschultz, 50, Damian’s father, Tina’s husband and the great-uncle of Ethan, faces eight charges, including felony murder, for allegedly ordering the punishment. No trial date has been set. He returns to court April 19.
McKeever-Hauschultz was emotional as she apologized to the court and community, and asked for forgiveness.
“I wish you could truly know how sorry I truly am because my heart hurts every day knowing such a tragedy occurred and I cannot undo it, no matter how hard I want it not to be. Because of my actions, another has suffered. I am truly sorry from the bottom of my heart. Please forgive me, if even humanly possible. If given another chance at life, I will get extensive counseling for both me and my family. I know changes need to made and I will be the first one to admit and actively work to change for the good. I was a follower in the past, and now I am to be a leader,” McKeever-Hauschultz said. “I wish I could bring Ethan back. My actions, my lack of actions, have left many traumatized. I’m sorry for not being a good person when I feel like I could have. I wish that never existed, and Ethan would be alive and well.”
The prosecution and defense attorney made a joint recommendation for two years in prison, which Judge Jerilyn Dietz said was not sufficient.
The judge noted the charges were reduced from intentionally contributing to delinquency causing death to McKeever-Hauschultz’s failure to act.
“I think that the amended charges fit the circumstances. I think that it is very clear, and has been established in hearing after hearing that your role in this, your culpability in this on that day was your failure to intervene, your failure to take action to prevent this most tragic of outcomes. I don’t believe you are free of culpability,” the judge said. “I don’t think that anyone is questioning that Timothy was the control in the household. He was head of household and exercised that control. But I also don’t think that frees you of culpability.”
McKeever-Hauschultz was also placed on extended supervision for five years.
McKeever-Hauschultz and Timothy Hauschultz, were the court-appointed guardians for Ethan. Ethan was Timothy’s grand-nephew. They were not home at the time of the incident.
The complaint says on April 20, 2018, Timothy told his son Damian Hauschultz, then 14, to make sure 7-year-old Ethan Hauschultz completed his punishment.
That included, according to the complaint, Ethan Hauschultz being required to carry a 44-pound log for two hours around a path in the backyard of their home. Damian said he had to carry wood for not knowing 13 Bible verses to Timothy’s satisfaction. The punishment was one week of carrying wood for two hours per day. Timothy picked out the logs, but Damian had to supervise the punishment for the younger children.
During that time the complaint says Ethan Hauschultz “struggled to carry his log” and Damian did “hit, kick, strike and poke Ethan approximately 100 times.” The complaint goes on to say Damian Hauschultz also stood on Ethan Hauschultz’s “body and head” while he was “face-down in a puddle.” The complaint also alleges Damian Hauschultz buried Ethan Hauschultz in about “80 pounds of packed snow” where he was left for about 20 to 30 minutes without a coat or boots.
Ethan died of hypothermia, but also had extensive other injuries, including blunt force injuries to his head, chest and abdomen, and a rib fracture, the medical examiner determined, the complaint states.
In Wisconsin, children ages 10 and older are charged in adult court for homicide cases.