On Friday, January 23, 2009, Kim de Gelder, reportedly with his face painted like the Joker, invaded the "Fairyland" daycare in Dendermonde and allegedly killed three people.
The day after the Dendermonde incident, it now turns out, in Reseburg, Clark County, Wisconsin, a man who had painted his face like the Joker in The Dark Knight invaded a home in an attempt to beat up his former girlfriend's boyfriend.
Here is the primary news item about the incident, as run in the Marshfield News-Herald, Marshfield, Wisconsin, on January 30, 2009:
No Joke: Clark Co. intruder's face painted like Batman villain by Jacob Miller
A 26-year-old Thorp man who broke into a town of Reseburg home allegedly wore face paint to resemble The Joker while assaulting his ex-girlfriend's boyfriend, according to a Clark County criminal complaint.
Cole Vetterkind broke into Alecia Swensen's boyfriend's home at N12458 Gorman Ave., Thorp at about 5:30 a.m. Saturday [January 24, 2009], sheriff's officials said. Vetterkind was shot in the leg when he attacked Jason Benzschawel, 23.
According to the criminal complaint:
Vetterkind entered the home with Joshua Kane, 22, of Stanley and began jumping on, hitting and choking Benzschawel while he was asleep in a bed with Swensen.
Benzschawel thought he was being hit with brass knuckles and said Vetterkind was wearing a ski mask. When the mask was pulled off during the altercation, he saw it was Vetterkind, who had his face painted like The Joker, played by Heath Ledger in the recent Batman movie, "The Dark Knight."
Swensen, 18, told police she dated Vetterkind, but they recently broke up because he would get violent. She said Vetterkind harassed her by calling and text messaging her, and he once waited for her at her parents' home.
While being attacked, Benzschawel grabbed a loaded 20-gauge pistol grip shotgun and shot Vetterkind in the leg.
Benzschawel said the shotgun only had one round in it, and he kept it loaded next to his bed. When investigators arrived, the shotgun was unloaded and laying on a towel in the bathroom.
Swensen managed to exit the house and call 911 during the assault.
The mattress and areas throughout the house were covered in blood.
Benzschawel told the sheriff's department that Vetterkind began to harass and threaten him when he started to date Swensen. He said Vetterkind claimed he has connections to the Hell's Angels motorcycle gang, who would come and "do things to him."
During the altercation, Benzschawel received bruises on his face and his hands were cut and bruised. After the shooting, Swensen helped Kane get Vetterkind into a white 1999 Oldsmobile Alero, which the two intruders had driven to the home. Kane took Vetterkind to Our Lady of Victory Hospital in Stanley. He was airlifted to Saint Joseph's Hospital in Marshfield, where he was in fair condition Wednesday, a hospital spokesperson said.
Vetterkind faces three felony charges that include strangulation and suffocation; intimidation of a victim; and use or attempt of force and burglary of a building or dwelling. He also faces a misdemeanor battery charge. His initial court appearance has not been set.
Kane faces a felony charge of intimidating a victim and the use or attempt of force, and two misdemeanor charges of criminal trespassing to a dwelling and battery. Kane, who is in the Clark County Jail on unrelated charges, had his initial appearance at the Clark County Courthouse, Neillsville, moved to 1:05 p.m. Thursday, according to online court records.
One local newspaper, the Leader-Telegram in Eau Claire, Wisconsin, noted on January 30, 2009, that "Cole C. Vetterkind, 26, of Thorp and Joshua J. Kane, 22, of Stanley face multiple criminal counts for reportedly breaking into a home where Vetterkind's cousin Jason P. Benzschawel, 23, was staying with Alecia Swensen, 18."
What is intriguing is that the suspect apparently is the victim's cousin. One translation of the name "Vetterkind" is literally "cousin child."
One of the officers involved in the incident was a female noted in the criminal complaint as "Sgt. Campbell." The teacher attacked yesterday in Clinton, Indiana, was "Ms. Campbell."
Thanks to Richard Hendricks who pointed to the breaking news on this Wisconsin event, and then quickly to Todd Campbell's posting alert about it too.