Sheriff: Triple homicide suspect won't be charged til next week - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Sheriff: Triple homicide suspect won't be charged until next week

Jaren Kuester, 31 Jaren Kuester, 31

TOWN OF WIOTA (WKOW) -- The suspect in a triple murder in Lafayette County may not be charged until next week.

Authorities haven't released any new details about the weekend murders of Gary Thoreson, 70, his wife Chloe, 66, and his brother Dean Thoreson, 76. A family member found their bodies on Sunday morning at Gary and Dean's home in the town of Wiota, which is near South Wayne.

The suspect, Jaren Kuester, 31, is believed to have walked at least six miles from where he abandoned his vehicle in a field in Green County and crossed the Pecatonica River to get to the Thoresons' home on Philippine Road. On Saturday, authorities found Kuester's SUV and a number of his clothing items, which had been discarded along his path.

Kuester was arrested Sunday afternoon in Waukesha when police spotted the Thoresons' stolen truck in a Waukesha apartment parking lot. He's currently being held in Lafayette County on three tentative charges of first degree intentional homicide.

Sheriff Scott Pedley says Kuester may not be officially charged until next week, as investigators sift through what he describes as a massive amount of reports. Pedley declined an on camera interview with 27 News Tuesday, but in an email said:

"Judicial review for purposes of holding Mr. Kuester beyond 72 hours has already occurred this morning and he will continue to be confined at the jail as a result.

The media will simply have to wait patiently [for more information] while the massive volume of reports are completed and forwarded to the DA. I believe the public's need to know is satisfied, for now, and when additional relevant facts can be shared, they will be shared."

Pedley went on to say the investigation is moving forward successfully, citing a great partnership between his staff and the Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation team helping collect evidence in the case.

The sheriff says once investigators finish the reports, they'll go to the district attorney to decide on charges. It could be early next week before Kuester will be in court for a bail hearing.

Meanwhile, the Thoreson family and greater South Wayne community continues to grieve. On Monday, the pastor at the family's church read a statement from the family, inviting the public to join them for a prayer vigil Wednesday night.

"The family wants to express their thanks for all of the support they've received from the Wiota community," says Rev. Luke Smetters, from Wiota Lutheran Church. "While it is hard for the family to find words to express everything that has gone through their minds, they have stated that this situation is unbelievable and surreal."

The prayer vigil is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Wednesday at Wiota Lutheran Church on Highway 78 near South Wayne.

SOUTH WAYNE (WKOW) -- The suspect in a triple homicide in Lafayette County may not appear in court until next week.
Jaren Kuester, 31, is tentatively charged with three counts of homicide. Lafayette County Sheriff Scott Pedley says Kuester will not make a court appearance Tuesday and it may not happen until next week.
Sheriff Pedley says the investigation is still ongoing. He says there is a large amount of information being looked at and once it's compiled, it will be forwarded onto the Lafayette County District Attorney's office for review. The district attorney would make any decisions about formal charges.
Kuester was arrested Sunday in connection with the murder of three people in rural South Wayne. The bodies of Gary Thoreson, 70, his wife Chloe, 66, and his brother Dean Thoreson, 76 were found earlier in the day.
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