JUNEAU – A 42-year-old Beaver Dam man was sentenced to three years in prison Wednesday for making more than 80 phone calls to the Dodge County Dispatch in just one day last summer.
John Cowen appeared before Judge Martin De Vries of the Dodge County Circuit. De Vries sentenced Cowen to an additional six years of extended supervision.
Cowen was found guilty in February of battery or threatening law enforcement and jumping bail, along with misdemeanor charges of resisting or obstructing an officer and illegal use of a phone.
Cowen was also convicted of three additional counts of jumping off a building in three separate cases, and one additional count of disorderly conduct. He was ordered to serve an additional three years of probation upon completion of his prison sentence and ordered to pay $500 in fines for various misdemeanors.
“Repeated bond violations, aggressive behavior, and intimidation of police lead to a prison sentence,” Dodge County District Attorney Kurt Klomberg said during sentencing. “Drunk or not, the defendant is fully responsible for his actions. Saying, “I was drunk,” is no excuse for this bad behavior. “
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According to the criminal complaint, a communications officer contacted Dodge County Sheriff Dale Schmidt on June 28 at 11:30 a.m. after receiving a non-emergency phone call to the local dispatch center. The caller said, “I had a prediction this morning that one of your pigs will be shot. “
Law enforcement in the county was notified of the threat and found Cowen made the phone call later that afternoon, according to the complaint. The call was reviewed and compared with another call sent to the Beaver Dam Police Department on the same day at 12:07 pm. The caller inquired with the Sheriff’s Department and was informed that the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office answered the phone to the department. The caller hung up. The call came from a number associated with Cowen.
Officers were stationed and maintained at Cowen’s home, and a detective from the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office called Cowen’s number and left a voicemail.
Cowen called police back a few hours later but denied having any connection to the calls.
According to the criminal complaint, Cowen denied having a gun. He said he had strong feelings for the Beaver Dam police managers who arrested him. He said he hates police in general.
A female crisis negotiator, not a police officer, was brought in to speak with Cowen. During the call, Cowen took her time to ask the negotiator inappropriate questions. He also made sexually explicit comments about a Beaver Dam Police officer, the lawsuit said.
Cowen was told not to call the police unless there was an emergency. In the early morning of June 29, he called dispatch seven times.
Dodge County Human Services was called on June 29 and a crisis officer attempted to contact Cowen on June 30, but was unable to do so. Cowen allegedly made 69 lewd phone calls from 6:44 p.m. on June 29 to 3:22 a.m. on June 30.
Cowen was arrested on June 30 and inappropriately attempted to touch the officer who arrested him. According to the criminal complaint, he also harassed nurses at Marshfield Medical Center – Beaver Dam after he was taken there for a medical procedure.
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