Authorities identify homicide victim

Police say suspect attacked victims with an axe at rural Sparta residence

Authorities identified the deceased victim in a rural Sparta attack that left three others injured, including the alleged attacker, as 87-year-old Bernard Waite.

According the Monroe County Sheriff’s office, which is investigating the incident that occurred at a Town of Sparta home Sunday, June 13 on Icarus Road just south of Hwy. 16, Waite and two others in the home were attacked with an axe.

While the sheriff’s office is releasing few details in the investigation, they did say Waite lived at the house. The names of the other two victims along with that of the alleged assailant are being withheld.

One of the victims is still hospitalized in serious condition after being taken from the scene by GundersenAIR, while the other was treated and released. The alleged assailant, who suffered from a self-inflicted gunshot wound, also remains hospitalized in serious condition.

According to the sheriff’s office, at about 11:40 a.m. last Sunday, the Monroe County 911 Communication Center received a call reporting a disturbance at the home and was advised there were three victims who had sustained injuries from an axe attack.

When police arrived, they encountered the suspect outside the home with a rifle. The suspect had shot himself prior to emergency personnel arriving and he was taken into custody.

Waite, who was related to the suspect, was located in the home and was pronounced dead at the scene.

The Sparta Area Fire District Department set up a landing zone at the intersection of Icarus Road and Hwy. 16 west of Sparta for two GundersenAir helicopters to land. The road remained closed to traffic for about an hour.

Evans Print & Media Group

1302 River Rd.
P.O. Box 252

Sparta, WI 54656-0252

Office Number: (608) 269-3186
Fax Number: (608) 269-6876