- A third teenager will head to prison for his role in a gang related stabbing earlier this year.
Eighteen-year-old Preston Krusensterna is one of six men charged with stabbing and beating a Wausau man in February, now he'll spend the next 18 years paying for it.
"I accept full responsibility for my actions and my actions alone," said Krusensterna, reading from a letter he wrote to the Judge.
He apologized to the victim and his family for his role in the attack. But District Attorney Chuck Simono told the Court Krusensterna repeatedly denied being part of a gang.
"According to Melvin Zarda Mr. Krusensterna is second in command in the Latin Kings in Mole Lake. And this planning had taken place for three to four days before it occurred," says Simono.
Defense attorney Joel Hirschhorn countered saying Krusensterna by nature is not a leader.
"He's a sky kid who's slight of build. He's immature and from his previous conduct you can see that he has anti-social, sort of, conduct patterns," says Hirschhorn.
Krusensterna's uncle, Sokaogon Chippewa Chairman-Elect Chris McGeshick told the Court the community is partially to blame for allowing gang activity to happen.
"We are not gang members. We do not associate with gangs. And we should not be associating with gangs. We are a clan system. Preston is part of the Bullhead clan. He is not a Latin King. We should not have or condone any of that type activity within our community," says McGeshick.
Judge Leon Stenz, in part, agreed that some of the fault lies with the community.
"Not only a failure of the community or the school but also the parents. Someone should have been here for this young man. But instead of encouraging him to do well they gave him the opportunity to fail," says Judge Stenz.
But Judge Stenz still held Krusensterna accountable for trying to kill another person. He sentenced him to seven years in prison, eight with extended supervision and three additional years of probation.
The three remaining suspects are scheduled for jury trials in January.
Written By: Lyndsey Stemm