A Tony man is facing charges in Rusk County Circuit Court after he allegedly drove his vehicle, while intoxicated, into a snow bank.
Richard W. Rapp, 40, has been charged with one felony count of second degree endangering safety, one misdemeanor count of operating a motor vehicle with a prohibited alcohol concentration with a passenger under 16 years and one misdemeanor count of OWI first offense with a passenger under 16 years of age.
If convicted Rapp faces a maximum penalty of 11 years incarceration or $27,200 in fines or both.
Rapp is scheduled to appear for an initial appearance hearing in Rusk County Circuit Court on Feb. 18.
According to the criminal complaint, on Jan. 1 at approximately 2:17 p.m. a Rusk County deputy was dispatched to the intersection of Edgewood Avenue E and E. Sixth Street N, in the township of Flambeau, regarding a report of a Suburban repeated driving in and out of the ditch.
Upon arrival the deputy found the Suburban on top of a snowbank. The driver, later identified as Rapp, was confused and unsure what was going on. The deputy noticed a strong odor of intoxicated beverages coming from the vehicle.
Rapp removed the keys from the ignition when requested. A young girl learned forward from the backseat and told the deputy Rapp was tired, according to the criminal complaint. Two young children were found in the backseat of the vehicle.
When asked for his driver’s license, Rapp kept looking at his cell phone in his hand. When asked, Rapp said he’d had “too much” to drink.
The deputy allegedly asked Rapp multiple times to exit the vehicle; when he finally attempted to exit, the deputy noticed a bottle of Admiral Nelson rum. Rapp allegedly admitted to have been drinking it.
Upon exiting the vehicle, Rapp stumbled and could not keep his balance.
Rapp consented to complete field sobriety tests and when he stepped off the line told the deputy, “I’m drunk and don’t deserve any leniency” and began crying. The criminal complaint alleges Rapp admitted he could not safely operate his vehicle.
A parent was contacted to come get the children.
Transported to the Rusk County Jail, Rapp provided a sample of his breath into an intoximeter which indicated at the time of the incident his breath alcohol content was .16 g/210L, twice the legal limit.