The Daily Globe - Serving Gogebic, Iron and Ontonagon Counties

Carli found guilty of hiding evidence in Saxon murder


Ralph Ansami/Daily Globe

Ralph Ansami/Daily Globe JESSICA CARLI appears in Iron County Court Tuesday afternoon with her attorney, Craig Haukaas, left.


Hurley - A Saxon, Wis., woman who aided her then boyfriend in attempting to hide evidence in the 2016 murder-arson at the Bear Trap Inn entered a no contest plea Tuesday in Iron County Court.

Jessica M. Carli, 42, will be sentenced on Aug. 23 for aiding a felon by hiding evidence.

Iron County Judge Patrick Madden found Carli guilty after her no contest plea and ordered a pre-sentence investigation.

Carli was involved in concealing evidence connected to the March 12, 2016 fire and stabbing at the Bear Trap Inn that resulted in the death of Lisa Waldros, of Kimball. She was a bartender at the bar-restaurant and sister of the owner.

Donald Rick, 45, was convicted on June 1 of first-degree intentional homicide in Waldros' death and is serving a life sentence in the Green Bay prison.

Richard Dufour, the assistant Wisconsin Attorney General who is prosecuting the Carli case, told the court a plea agreement has been worked out in which Carli would receive three years of probation, with the first six months to be spent in the Iron County Jail at Hurley.

Carli's attorney, Craig Haukaas, said she agreed to the plea deal on her own. "She does not want to cause any more pain in this case... This is her decision," Haukaas said.

The count against Carli is a felony that is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and/or a $25,000 fine.

The criminal complaint said Carli knew Rick had killed Waldros, of Kimball, and helped him attempt to hide evidence after he set fire to the Saxon bar.

Both Rick and Carli told investigators they had gone to a Lac du Flambeau casino the night of March 11, 2016, with Rick saying they had lost all of their money. The complaint says Carli told authorities during the drive home, Rick suggested following a woman home to steal her purse.

Carli allegedly responded by telling Rick, "Go ahead and do whatever."

Carli admitted Rick asked for her assistance in disposing of evidence, including his clothes and shoes that were thrown into the Bad River, as well as the knife used to kill Waldros.

A shoe that was thrown from the Bad River bridge into the river near Ashland was later recovered by investigators.

About 20 people attended the Tuesday afternoon court proceedings.

Victim impact statements will be taken at the Aug. 23 sentencing hearing, which will be on a Wednesday. Madden reserved that whole afternoon for the sentencing hearing.

A $10,000 signature bond remains in effect for Carli.


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