By Shereen Siewert
A 40-year-old Wausau man accused of assaulting a 12-year-old girl while her mother was at work and her two brothers were in the home will appear next month for a plea hearing, signaling a likely deal in the case.
Phillip B. Henle, who is not related to the alleged victim, is due to appear July 11 in Marathon County Circuit Court. A two-day jury trial for July 12-13 remains on the calendar.
An investigation began in July 2019 after the alleged victim disclosed the abuse to her father and stepmother, who called police.
During a forensic interview, the alleged victim said Henle made her “pinky promise” not to tell anyone about the abuse, which she said happened at her mother’s town of Easton home while her mother worked an overnight shift. A check of employment records showed the girl’s mother did work overnight shifts on the dates that coincided with the alleged abuse, according to the criminal complaint.
Charges of sexual assault of a child younger than 13, child enticement and exposing genitals to a child were filed in October 2019 against Henle. Wisconsin Department of Corrections records show Henle was on extended supervision at the time the alleged assaults took place and has a long string of past convictions including sexual assault, attempted robbery, forgery, robbery with a threat of force, exposing genitals to a minor, obstructing an officer, misappropriation of identification information and bail jumping.
Henle is currently in prison, serving time ordered in multiple Langlade County cases.