- Emotions ran high at a public info meeting in Cloverland Town Hall Tuesday night. The meeting was held to discuss the release of a violent sex offender to Colverland next week.
Several people came to meeting to hear details on the sex offender's release and to ask questions.
It has been more than a decade since 41-year-old Steven Burgess was convicted of sexually assaulting a nine-year-old girl he was babysitting.
Initially Burgess was released and placed in Cloverland in 2012, but he violated his probation three years later and returned to jail. But a judge approved Burgess' release to the same exact home off Chickaree Lake Road this year.
Many at the meeting wanted to know what violation Burgess committed three years ago. Supervised Release Specialist Scott Timm says he couldn't give details on the violation, but he did say that it was a violation of Burgess' release rules and that it had nothing to do with a child.
"I mean the reason for the rules is to ensure community safety, that's why we have them in place and that's why they're approved by the court, so we take any rule violation very serious," said Timm.
Another concern for many at the meeting was the location of Burgess' future home. The home is a lakeside property, and many people said kids like to swim in the area.
One woman at the meeting said she will be Burgess' next door neighbor, and that her 10-year-old granddaughter would often swim off her property.
"My daughter is in fear. You know, we don't want, the kids won't even come over anymore, and that's sad because we're the grandparents," said the woman.
Vilas County Sheriff Joe Fath assured everyone that the department would keep residents safe. The sheriff also told residents to call if they saw anything of suspicion near Burgess' future residence.