A Janesville man was charged with first-degree intentional homicide and held on $5 million cash bail Friday in connection with a death that occurred in Wisconsin Dells Feb. 14.
Jeremy L. Mondy, 34, remains in custody in the Columbia County jail. Judge Todd Hepler set the cash bail, and Mondy may not have contact with the victim’s family. He may not possess or consume alcohol or possess dangerous weapons. Another hearing over Mondy’s detention status is scheduled for Feb. 25 in Columbia County Circuit Court after the state made a motion to hold him without bail.
Mondy was charged with first-degree intentional homicide with a domestic abuse modifier, possession of a firearm by a felon and bail jumping. He faces life imprisonment if convicted.
According to the criminal complaint, a Dells police officer responded to the Vue hotel, 1015 River Road, around 11:37 a.m., Feb. 14 after hotel staff requested a welfare check on two people staying in a room at the hotel.
Officers knocked on the door of the room. They did not receive a response at first. They knocked again and heard music playing. They knocked on the door again, heard movement, and the door opened.
The complaint says that Mondy stood with the door half open. An officer told him he was there to do a welfare check after hotel staff reported the room occupants were past the check out time, and housekeeping staff saw a man passed out on the bed and a woman on the bathroom floor.
The officer asked Mondy is he was alright, and he said he was. The officer asked Mondy if the woman was OK, and Mondy allegedly said she was “crazy.” The officer asked if the woman was alive. The complaint says that Mondy looked at the officer with a blank stare and said “no.”
The other officer handcuffed Mondy and transported him to the police department. The officer could smell the odor of intoxicants on Mondy’s breath and reported that he seemed under the influence of intoxicants. After Mondy was detained, the first officer entered the room and saw a woman dead on the bathroom floor.
At the police department, Mondy identified the woman who died. The woman is not identified in the criminal complaint due to “Marsy’s Law,” and the family has requested privacy, according to a Wisconsin Department of Justice press release.
State special agents came to the police department to interview Mondy. Mondy said he and the victim had lived together for a month in 2020. They checked into the hotel together Feb. 13. Mondy said the two had alcoholic beverages in the room.
Mondy told law enforcement that they later struggled over a gun in the bathroom. He said that he overpowered the victim and gained sole possession of the gun. He then said that the gun accidentally went off, and the victim fell to the floor.
Mondy later changed his statement and said that he pulled the trigger on purpose to defend himself, the complaint says.
Mondy allegedly said he panicked, put the gun in his pocket, put his coat on and left the room. He discarded the firearm before returning to the hotel.
The firearm has yet to be recovered. Law enforcement are continuing to search for it. Anyone who may have information related to the investigation and the location of the firearm should contact the Wisconsin Dells Police Department at (608) 253-1611.
According to online court records, Mondy was charged Feb. 4 in Rock County Circuit Court with felony strangulation, felony false imprisonment and misdemeanors for criminal damage to property, disorderly conduct and bail jumping. He was freed on a $2,000 signature bond and has a court appearance in that case set for March 8.
Records also indicate that Mondy was charged April 8, 2020 in Rock County Circuit Court with misdemeanors of disorderly conduct and criminal damage to property related to domestic abuse. He was free on a $500 signature bond in that case.
Wisconsin Dells Police Department and Wisconsin Department of Justice-Division of Criminal Investigation are working with the Lake Delton Police Department, Columbia County Sheriff’s Office, Columbia County District Attorney’s Office, Columbia County Medical Examiner’s Office, Wisconsin State Patrol and the Wisconsin State Crime Lab.