By Shereen Siewert
A 29-year-old Merrill man who tried to burglarize a Wausau-area business, fled the scene and was captured after a two-day manhunt, will spend four years in prison after he was sentenced on multiple charges Monday.
Brock A. Rhode is one of three people charged after an attempted burglary at Zingers and Flingers, 229179 Hwy. O, in November. The burglary was thwarted by the business owner, who was armed and fired several rifle rounds before the three suspects fled, according to the Marathon County Sheriff’s Department.
Rhode, who was described as dangerous and possibly armed, was arrested two days later.
Officers responding to the burglary discovered Isaac D. Tomek a short distance away. Tomek was taken into custody. An alleged getaway vehicle driver, Rachel M. Hoeppner, was found nearby and also arrested.
Hoeppner is facing burglary charges and has several additional open cases.
Tomek faces charges of burglary, possession of methamphetamine, criminal damage to property and bail jumping. Court records show he has several open cases in Lincoln County including an August burglary charge. He is due in court June 9 for a pretrial conference.
During a plea and sentencing hearing Monday in Marathon County Circuit Court, Judge Suzanne O’Neill found Rhode guilty of nine charges in five separate cases: Fleeing an officer, driving or operating a vehicle without the owner’s consent, three counts of burglary, criminal damage to property, strangulation and suffocation, disorderly conduct and battery. All cases were filed in 2020.
In addition to the prison term, Rohde will spend three years on extended supervision following his release and pay restitution to two victims.