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Crandon man charged with raping five underage victims; Christenson accused of impregnating, forcing abortion on oneSubmitted: 04/20/2017
Ben Meyer
Ben Meyer
Managing Editor / Senior Reporter
bmeyer@wjfw.com

Crandon man charged with raping five underage victims; Christenson accused of impregnating, forcing abortion on one
CRANDON - A Crandon man is accused of impregnating an underage girl, then performing a crude abortion on her.

The criminal complaint also says Matthew Christenson, 33, has sexually assaulted five different children in Forest County since 2010, and brutally beaten at least one more.


Multiple victims said Christenson gave them alcohol and marijuana during his interactions with them.

Newswatch 12 is concealing the identities, ages, and any potential relationship of the alleged victims to the defendant, using only numbers for identification.

Victim 1 told Forest County Sheriff's Captain Jeff Marvin that Christenson impregnated her. Then, according to the criminal complaint, Christenson attempted to give her an abortion himself.  Newswatch 12 is leaving out the details of that act.

Victim 2, another child, lost count of the times Christenson had sex with that same victim.

"[Victim 2 told investigators] that it was so many times [the victim] did not even know but it was over one hundred times," says the complaint.

One victim told of threats by Christenson.

"The defendant told them that if they told anyone he would find them when he got out of jail," says the complaint.

Victim 3 reported being raped on a picnic table while camping near Wabeno. Victim 4, according to the complaint, would "say no [to sex] but [Christenson] would slap [the victim] in the face." Victim 2 told investigators, "[Christenson] would tell [Victim 5] that he wanted [the victim] to be his [spouse]."

All five victims were minors at the time of the alleged crimes.

A sixth child, Victim 6, was hit daily by Christenson, according to a different victim. Victim 6 told investigators Christenson used a switch, canoe paddle, wooden stick, bull whip, crescent wrench, and fire poker at different times in the abuse.

Forest County District Attorney Chuck Simono filed an amended criminal complaint in court on Wednesday.

Christenson is now charged with 14 felony counts, including sexual assault and physical abuse charges. The maximum penalty if convicted on all charges is 454 years in prison.

Christenson is in the Forest County Jail on $75,000 cash bond. He will return to court on May 3.

This story has been updated from its original version.


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VILAS COUNTY - Many people love sightseeing on two wheels throughout the Northwoods.

Now, you can get a prize for doing it.

"Bike the Heart" encourages riders to explore the different communities along the Heart of Vilas County Trail.

The trail is more than 45 miles of paved path that connects Boulder Junction, Sayner, St. Germain and Manitowish Waters.

The goal of "Bike the Heart" is to stop at each Chamber of Commerce with a "pass card" to get a stamp.

You have until September to collect four stamps and send it in to one of the chambers to be entered for a prize worth more than $100.

"Bringing the bicyclists to this area is astronomical. We have inquiries from the entire Midwest and even the outlying states of California and New York," says executive director Penny Wiesmann of St. Germain Chamber of Commerce.

Mile markers and "fix-it" stations are the newest additions to the Heart of Vilas County Trail.

The stations have tools attached to the sides to help you make a quick fix on your bike.

"We're just really excited that people can come up and ride up the entire length of the trail, or if they want to take up some smaller portions they can do that to," says executive director Theresa Smith of Boulder Junction Chamber of Commerce.



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