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Former judge killed: Chippewa County sheriff candidate was on suspect's 'hit list'

Posted at 7:42 PM, Jun 06, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-06 22:34:49-04

CHIPPEWA COUNTY, — Federal, state and local investigators are still actively investigating the death of a retired Wisconsin judge who was targeted and killed inside his home Friday.

Judge John Roemer, 68, was fatally shot Friday morning in the small town of New Lisbon in Juneau County.

The suspect, Douglas Uhde, 56, suffered an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound and was found in Roemer’s basement. Uhde remains in critical condition and has not yet been charged in connection to Roemer’s death.

Uhde was sentenced to six years in prison by Judge Roemer in 2005. The retired judge was named in an alleged “hit list” Uhde created, which included 13 members of the judicial system and politicians.

The Wisconsin Department of Justice is leading the investigation.

“We didn't have any info regarding any threats relating to Judge Roemer prior to this incident,” said Attorney General Josh Kaul, while addressing the media Monday. “Judge Roemer had sentenced Uhde previously. But the investigation into that is ongoing. I can’t provide many details beyond that because we do not want to hinder the investigation.”

Another person included on the “hit list” is Dan Marcon of Northwest Wisconsin. Marcon says he got a call from authorities Friday night.

“I was surprised,” said Marcon. “I’m trying to figure out why I would be included on that hit list. It’s unsettling. Especially for my family.”

Marcon is a gun store owner who is running for Chippewa County Sheriff. He spent 14 years with the Department of Corrections, and says he recognized the photo of Uhde that police showed him.

“I know I was working in the prison while he was an inmate,” said Marcon. “But nothing striking about him, or our interactions, comes to mind. I think we had an issue one time. Like we had to search his cell, but nothing stood out. I just remember an older white guy who kind of stayed to himself. I saw him every day. Nothing major.”

Other names on Uhde's alleged hit list include Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers and Michigan Gov.Gretchen Whitmer - both democrats - along with Republican U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

“I don’t know if he recognized my name once I announced my campaign for Chippewa County Sheriff,” said Marcon. “I don’t hide that I’m a staunch Republican. I am a big supporter of the 2nd Amendment. I researched if Uhde ever came in my gun store, but we have no record of that. We would not have sold a felon a gun.”

Attorney General Kaul says Uhde appears to have acted alone, and authorities do not believe the people on the hit list are in any danger anymore.

“I’m still proceeding with extra caution,” said Marcon, who has alerted his employees and family to be extra vigilant. “You don’t know who else Uhde may have been in contact with about his plan. You cannot let your guard down these days.”

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