By Shereen Siewert

WAUSAU — A former central Wisconsin man accused of trying to kill his unborn child by secretly drugging the child’s mother with an abortion pill was released from jail last week, after a judge agreed to convert a previously ordered $500,000 cash bond to a signature bond.

A jury trial for Jeffrey Smith, 34, was set to begin Jan. 14 in Marathon County Circuit Court, but those dates have been taken off the calendar. Smith faces charges of attempted first degree intentional homicide and unlawful delivery of a prescription drug.

During a motions hearing Dec. 20, Circuit Judge LaMont Jacobson granted defense attorney Wright Laufenberg’s request for bond modification, with several conditions: Smith is to required to live with his parents in Minnesota, have no contact with the alleged victim, and not possess any controlled substances without a valid prescription. Jacobson also ordered Smith not to apply for a passport until the case concludes; Smith is also prohibited from leaving Minnesota except to travel to Wisconsin to work on his defense with his attorney.

Charges against Smith were filed just days after the contents of a water bottle tested positive for drugs that police and prosecutors say were intended to cause his former girlfriend to terminate a pregnancy.

An investigation began Jan. 28, 2018 when police were called to the North Third Avenue home of a Wausau woman who told investigators she suspected Smith spiked her water bottle while she was in the bathroom. The woman, who at the time was 21 weeks pregnant, said Smith is the father of her then-unborn child and has been pressuring her to get an abortion because he “didn’t want anything to do with the child,” court documents state.

The woman showed investigators a series of text messages she allegedly exchanged with Smith between October and January in which Smith repeatedly demanded she abort the child after the woman said she planned to keep the baby.

The woman said Smith came to her house to discuss the baby and left shortly after she went to the bathroom. After Smith left, the woman said she noticed a residue inside her water bottle and called police. Investigators sent the bottle to the state crime lab, where the abortion drug was discovered.

Then on Feb. 1, 2018 police searched Smith’s Grand Rapids, Wis. home, where detectives located two empty blister packs for the medications Mifepristone and Misoprostol. After consulting with a local physician, investigators learned that Mifepristone blocks progesterone, and Misoprostol induces labor.

A calendar call to set future court dates will be held in January.