Former Mayville Police Chief Christopher MacNeill altered a drug investigation report in 2011 that involved the son of another police officer, according to information provided to the Daily Citizen through an open records request.
Investigation of the case now involves multiple Wisconsin agencies as Dodge County authorities have moved to distance themselves and avoid conflicts of interest.
MacNeill, who resigned March 31, was investigated by the Watertown Police Department at the request of Mayville Mayor Rob Boelk. Boelk’s request came after the Wisconsin Department of Criminal Investigation served a search warrant on the city of Mayville Feb. 6. Boelk placed MacNeill on paid administrative leave Feb. 9.
According to investigative records, MacNeill altered a report about the son of a former Mayville police officer.
The report written by Mayville police officer Tony Trunkel originally stated that a 17-year-old boy had two Vicodin pills at Mayville High School on Jan. 13, 2011, and that he swallowed one with a soda and handed one to another student who did the same thing. A teacher caught them in the act.
Trunkel, as well as several others in the report, said the teen’s father did not ask or pressure anyone to change the report. The student served a five-day suspension, according to school officials interviewed by Watertown police.
The report originally classified the matter as a drug investigation and labeled the teen as a “suspect.”
MacNeill told investigators during an interview Feb. 21 that he changed the report label from “Drug Possession” to “School Medication Violation.”
MacNeill said that he contacted the Dodge County District Attorney’s Office about the investigation Jan. 14, 2011, and during a phone conversation, “I was advised that this complaint was not prosecutable, due to the lack of evidence and other statements.”
MacNeill said he then talked to Trunkel about changing the complaint, in part because he knew the teen wanted to join the military and didn’t want the complaint to prevent that when the U.S. Army did a records check.
MacNeill denied that he made other changes to the report. Investigators found the report went from six pages to four and witness statements were removed. Also removed were any references to the drug in question being Vicodin. Investigators conclude that although MacNeill denies removing the statements or drug references. “All of these changes ... are consistent with the changes Chief MacNeill admits to making and in the same spirit and intent Chief MacNeill says he used to justify making the changes he admits to.”
Trunkel told Watertown investigators that he did not know the report was changed until he was approached by former Mayville Police Chief Bill Linzenmeyer Sr. in 2016.
MacNeill also talked to Linzenmeyer Sr. about changing the report in 2011. Linzemeyer told investigators that he said to MacNeill, “You change the report you’re going to be fired.”
Linzenmeyer Sr. retired as Mayville police chief in 2011. He told Watertown police investigators that he kept a copy of the report when he retired and he asked a police secretary to keep an eye on it in case it changed.
Linzenmeyer Sr. told investigators he want to protect himself in case MacNeill changed the report and then said “Linzenmeyer changed it.” Linzenmeyer Sr. said he was informed within months of his retirement that the report had been altered.
According to Trunkel, he had a conversation with Linzenmeyer Sr. in August 2016 in the street in front of their homes and Linzemeyer Sr. told him about the changes to the report. The two live across the street from each other. On Aug. 11, 2016, Trunkel found a copy of the original six-page report as well as the current four-page report in his mailbox.
When investigators asked during a Feb. 10 interview why he waited five years to tell anyone about the change in the report Linzenmeyer Sr. said, “I don’t know how to answer that question.”
Investigators also asked him why he told the U.S. Army there was no record for the son of the former police officer. Linzenmeyer Sr. denied he ever got such a request until investigators pulled out a copy of a form with his signature stating there was no record.
“I stand corrected on this,” Linzenmeyer Sr. said.
When investigators pressed Linzenmeyer Sr. on why he would have said there was no record, he started to have a medical problem and appeared to be having short seizures. The investigators ended the interview and 911 was called.
While they were leaving the two were told that Bill Linzenmeyer Jr., a police officer in Beaver Dam, was on his way to his father’s house. The report said they wanted to leave before having a confrontation with Linzenmeyer Jr.
But a few blocks away, at the corner of Emmer and Breckenridge streets, they were confronted by Linzenmeyer Jr., who was in a pickup truck and according to their report was wearing a Beaver Dam Police Department uniform including body armor. The report states that Linzenmeyer Jr. was using profanity and acted in an aggressive manner after he exited the truck and began to yell at the two Watertown officers.
According to the report, Linzenmeyer Jr. got back in his truck and left when one of the officers contacted the Dodge County Sheriff’s Office via radio.
Beaver Dam Police Chief John Kreuziger said Thursday, “I am aware of that situation and what occurred, but we can’t say anything because it is being investigated by an outside agency.”
The Fond du Lac County Sheriff’s Office and the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office are investigating that incident.
In the meantime, the state’s division of criminal investigation continues to investigate MacNeill’s actions. Boelk asked for that investigation in a letter he sent the first week of March.
Dodge County District Attorney Kurt Klomberg said that as soon as he became aware of the direction of the investigation, he also asked the state attorney general’s office to get involved.
DCI officials have yet to respond to open records requests made by the Daily Citizen at the end of March.
Capt. Ryan Vossekuil has been running the Mayville Police Department since Feb. 9 and the city has begun looking for an interim chief.