UPDATE: Woman charged with threatening Portage Co. judge
PORTAGE COUNTY (WAOW) -
A Portage County woman faces a jury on Monday for allegedly threatening a judge.
Julie Grych faces three charges, including threatening to burn down Portage County Judge Frederic Fleishauer's home in September 2011.
Fleishauer retired from his judicial duties last year. A Clark County judge is overseeing this case.
In his opening statement, prosecuting attorney David Knaapen said Grych has made threatening comments to others in the past and she later admitted to investigators that she left the voice mail.
"When the defendant makes threats to people, everybody takes them seriously, to the point where she was convicted before and she received a sanction while on probation and had to go to jail because she made threats," said Knaapen.
Defense attorney Michael Hughes said the state needs to prove two main things -- who actually left the message on Judge Fleishauer's voice mail and what the caller's intent was.
"The identification issue is going to be central to this case," said Hughes." If the state can not prove to us beyond a reasonable doubt that Ms. Grych actually left a concerning voice mail, then we're certainly not going to hold the contents of that voice mail against Ms. Grych."
Grych's parole and probabation officer Jill Hytry testified on Monday morning, saying she had spoken with the defendant thousands of times in the past and recognized her voice. She did acknowledge that at times, her messages didn't make much sense.
"There were times when she was well, actually very well," said Hytry.
"When she would not do well, then she was very, very erratic for periods of time."
Stevens Point Mayor Andrew Halverson said Grych made threats against him and his family shortly after he took office in 2007. Halverson said Grych had come to his office about 5 or 6 times because she felt she wasn't being treated fairly by the Portage County judicial system.
He said a Stevens Point police officer told him about comments posted on Grych's MySpace page -- with "extreme" threats against him.
"It was a very strange day, to say the least, the first time I ever walked out of City Hall and looked behind me to ensure that someone wasn't there," said Halverson.
A jury of ten men and two women are listening to the case. Newsline 9 has a crew in the courtroom and will continue to update this story throughout the day.