Lake Wissota Victim Identified

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The Chippewa County sheriff’s department has identified the man whose body was found in Chippewa County and say they are interviewing a person of interest in the case. The department identified the victim today as 31-year-old Kenneth Patterson. His body was found Monday in the yard of a home near Lake Wissota. And just overnight, Chippewa County deputies helped with the arrest of a man in Eau Claire. 
FOX 25-48’s Jesse Horne has the story.

The week for the Chippewa Falls sheriff’s office began with the discovery of Patterson’s body in the yard of a home north of Chippewa Falls. County Coroner Ron Patten believes Patterson’s body had been there for several hours before it was discovered late Monday morning and that he died of a gunshot wound.

“There’s a good probability that it was a gunshot. We don’t have evidence, for sure, to support that at this point. But, it is a high possibility.”

The next day, there were also reports of shots fired in downtown Chippewa Falls.  Police say they have not confirmed yet if shots were fired and have not said if it is related to Patterson’s death.

Then overnight, Chippewa County deputies helped with the arrest of a man at a home on the 500 block of First Avenue in Eau Claire. People around the area were asked to stay home while the operation was underway.

“Last night was a good example of cooperation with numerous law enforcement agencies doing a joint investigation.”

Matthew Labrec was booked into the Chippewa County jail on a probation hold, but Sheriff Kowalczyk says he is also one of several people who is a person of interest in the Chippewa County homicide.

Kowalczyk maintains with investigations into all three cases ongoing, keeping the overall community safe has been important.

“In the early stages of this investigation, there are a lot of unanswered questions. So, at this point, we feel that Chippewa County and the Chippewa Valley area is relatively safe in regards to this investigation.”

Kowalczyk says there are a lot of pieces to this case. They have gotten several tips, and they are conducting several interviews.

“There are so many avenues that we have to address in regards to an investigations of this sort. So, to say that this is confined to Chippewa County, because that’s where the body was found, I would be foolish to say that. Again, our efforts are only here in Chippewa County.”

In Eau Claire, Jesse Horne, FOX 25-48 News at 9.

Coroner Ron Patten said Patterson’s body was taken to the Ramsey County Medical Examiner’s office in the Twin Cities and a full autopsy is under way. He hopes to have a preliminary report made available by the end of the week.

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