Bail set at $3 million for triple murder suspect - WQOW TV: Eau Claire, WI NEWS18 News, Weather, and Sports

Bail set at $3 million for triple murder suspect


DARLINGTON (WKOW) -- Bail is set at $3 million for the suspect in a triple murder in Lafayette County.

31-year-old Jaren Kuester appeared in court Thursday via a video-conferencing link from the Lafayette County Jail.

Kuester's attorney argued for bail to be set at $300,000, but Lafayette County Circuit Court Judge William D. Johnston opted for $3 million cash.

Kuester has not been formally charged. He is being held on tentative charges of three counts of intentional homicide, one count of theft and another count of burglary. He's accused of killing Gary, Chloe and Dean Thoreson.

Kuester's next court date is set for Friday, May 10.


DARLINGTON (WKOW) -- The Lafayette County Sheriff's Office says theft and burglary charges have been added against Jaren Kuester, the suspect in the killing of three elderly people in Lafayette County last weekend. Sheriff Scott Pedley says details related to those charges were developed during the course of the homicide investigation.

The charges are listed on a probable cause determination released by the Sheriff's Office. Sheriff Pedley also issued a statement saying Lafayette County Circuit Court Judge William Johnson, who signed the probable cause determination on Tuesday, ordered the probable cause statement sealed for at least the next 60 days and that it could be extended at the judge's discretion.

Sheriff Pedley went on to say sealing the document is necessary for the effective investigation and prosecution of criminal cases, which he believes outweighs public interest in disclosure of information found in the document.

Kuester is being held on three tentative charges of first degree intentional homicide in the deaths of Gary Thoreson, his wife Chloe, and his brother Dean. They were found dead in Gary and Chloe's home in South Wayne on Sunday.

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