Bowers heading to trial on felony charge
A felony case against a Taylor County sheriff’s deputy is headed to trial.
At a preliminary hearing held Wednesday, judge Kevin Klein ruled there was probable cause that a crime had been committed and bound the case over for trial. Probable cause is a much lower threshold than what the prosecutors will have to prove at an eventual trial.
In late February 2017, Steve Bowers was a detective with the Taylor County Sheriff’s Department. Bowers and other members of the department were working with producers of the true crime television show “Cold Justice” on an episode about an unsolved murder in the county.
Bowers is accused of releasing information to the show’s producers about two additional cold case homicides in the county without the direct authorization of sheriff Bruce Daniels. Those files were shared electronically through Bowers’s personal DropBox account. Special agent Kyra Schallhorn of the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigations (DCI) testified on Tuesday that the files that were shared included ones loaned to the sheriff’s department by the DCI. Schallhorn also testified that Bowers had directed the department’s data record manager to release boxes of information containing investigation reports and medical data for the unsolved murders.
This release of information is the foundation of felony misconduct in office charges filed by the state against Bowers.
See this week's issue of The Star News for the complete story.