Wisconsin man gets life term for killing relative with ax

Jan 3, 2023, 11:42 PM | Updated: Jan 4, 2023, 1:53 pm

SPARTA, Wis. (AP) — A judge sentenced a Wisconsin man to life in plus 120 years in prison on Wednesday for killing his step-grandfather with an ax and injuring two other people during an altercation at the step-grandfather’s home.

Monroe County Circuit Judge Todd Ziegler called 38-year-old Thomas Wayne Aspseter a selfish, remorseless human being with almost no redeeming qualities before he sentenced him, the La Crosse Tribune reported.

“There is a struggle to find positive aspects of Mr. Aspseter’s character,” the judge said.

According to prosecutors, Aspseter had been staying with his 87-year-old step-grandfather, Bernard Waite, but Waite wanted him to leave the home in Sparta, a community of about 10,000 people roughly midway between Milwaukee and Minneapolis. Aspseter apparently returned to the home in June 2021 while Waite was at a family gathering in Waukesha and used a crowbar to get inside.

Waite and his brother and sister-in-law, Michael and Margaret Waite, returned home to find Aspseter on the property. Bernard Waite told him to leave. An enraged Aspseter then hit Bernard and Michael Waite with the ax, striking both of them in the head, and struck Margaret Waite in the arm.

Aspseter then shot himself in the throat with a rifle, called 911 and confessed to killing Bernard Waite, according to the complaint.

Ziegler heard testimony that Michael Waite barely survived the attack and that Margaret Waite has lost strength in her injured arm.

“I’ve been in hell for quite a while,” she said. “I live this every day and every night.”

Ziegler sentenced Aspseter to life for killing his step-grandfather and to consecutive 60-year terms for the attacks on Michael and Margaret Waite.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


FILE - An American flag is flown next to the Chinese national emblem during a welcome ceremony at t...
Associated Press

US moving ahead on plan to down Chinese balloon over ocean

The Biden administration is moving forward with a plan to shoot down a large Chinese balloon suspected of conducting surveillance on the U.S. military, by bringing it down once it is above the Atlantic Ocean where the remnants could potentially be recovered, according to two U.S. officials.
15 hours ago
In this photo provided by the U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Northwest, a Coast Guard rescue swimmer reac...
Associated Press

Man rescued by Coast Guard wanted in ‘Goonies’ fish incident

A man who was saved by a Coast Guard rescue swimmer at the mouth of the Columbia River as a massive wave rolled the yacht he was piloting Friday was wanted for a bizarre incident in which police said he left a dead fish at the Astoria, Oregon, home featured in the classic 1985 film, "The Goonies."
15 hours ago
FILE - An Amazon company logo on the company's building in Schoenefeld near Berlin, Germany, March ...
Associated Press

Amazon violated labor law with delivery app

A Spanish court has ruled that Amazon broke labor laws by forcing more than 2,000 delivery drivers to use an app that the company controlled for scheduling work and payments and requiring them to use their own cars and cellphones on the job.
15 hours ago
Harvard's Hasty Pudding Theatricals Woman of the Year Jennifer Coolidge, center, rides in a parade ...
Associated Press

Hasty Pudding celebrates Coolidge as its Woman of the Year

CAMBRIDGE, Mass. (AP) — “The White Lotus” actress Jennifer Coolidge is being celebrated Saturday as the 2023 Woman of the Year by Harvard University’s Hasty Pudding Theatricals. As the oldest theatrical organization in the nation and one of the oldest in the world, since 1951, Hasty Pudding Theatricals has bestowed this award annually on women […]
2 days ago
Members of the ground crew secure the site after a United airlines flight made an emergency landing...
Associated Press

Engine problems force Vegas-bound flight to land in Nebraska

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) — A United Airlines flight headed from Chicago to Las Vegas made an unplanned stop in Nebraska on Saturday after the pilot reported engine problems. Mark Grant, a communications operator at the Lincoln Airport, said 326 passengers and crew members were aboard the Boeing 777 when it took off from O’Hare International […]
2 days ago
CORRECTS TO KINGSTOWN, NOT KINGSTON - In this photo provided by Brian Branch, a large balloon drift...
Associated Press

Eyes on the sky as Chinese balloon shot down over Atlantic

Eyes were locked on the Carolina skies Saturday as the suspected Chinese spy balloon that traversed the U.S. over the past week drifted over the Atlantic Ocean and was shot down by a fighter jet. In Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, a crowd lining the beach boardwalk cheered as the balloon was struck by a missile […]
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Wisconsin man gets life term for killing relative with ax