Supporters of Travis Ploman, 40, filled the seats at Ploman's preliminary court appearance today. Ploman's mothers spoke to Newsline Nine about her son's character as a family man and member of the community as well as how the relatives are coping with the loss of two loved ones.More >>
by Elizabeth Fay
WAUSAU (WAOW)--The Kronenwetter man charged with killing his wife and daughter in a drunk driving accident appears in court.
Travis Ploman waived his preliminary hearing this afternoon. The 40-year-old stood mute as the judge entered a not guilty plea.
His mother spoke to Newsline Nine today saying her son is a "good man" and the fatal crash was an accident. She says she hopes the judge remembers that, when Ploman heads to trial. "He misses his wife and daughter. Everyday he suffers and relives that and I don't see how anything could be worse than that," says Ploman's mother, Cindy Collins.
Collins deals with the tragic loss of her 12 year old granddaughter and daughter-in-law who were killed in the crash, as well as criminal charges against her son.
"It's absolutely overwhelming. We do it a day at a time. We have all the confidence in the world in Travis. He is a good man. He is a good family man," says Collins.
Support for Ploman goes beyond the courtroom. Nearly 200 people joined a Facebook group titled: "Travis Ploman Should Not Go to Jail."
Some people post comments to show their support. One person wrote, "I'm not saying that he was right in D & D, but a different sort of punishment should be given to him. He is a good guy."
In court, the judge says Ploman has no criminal record and more community ties than most defendants. But he's also unique in an unfavorable way. "He is the only person that comes to my mind in being involved in a double OWI homicide in Marathon County," says District Attorney, Kenneth J. Heimerman.
Ploman may be a good man, but he also may be held responsible for the loss of two lives. His mother says she hopes he'll be allowed to stay home and be a father to his son. That son turned ten years old today.
The judge lowered Ploman's bail to a $100,000 dollar signature bond and a $10,000 cash bond. If convicted, he faces over 50 years behind bars.