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Judge commits homicide offender to mental institution

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crime and courts River Falls, 54022
Hudson Star Observer
715-386-9891 customer support
River Falls Wisconsin 2815 Prairie Drive / P.O. Box 25 54022

A northwest Wisconsin man will probably spend the rest of his life in a mental institution for killing a long-time friend a year-and-a-half ago.


Wayne Rouillard, 64, was found innocent-by-insanity to a charge of second-degree intentional homicide. A Polk County judge gave him a 40-year commitment.

Rouillard killed 61-year-old Stephen Dahlstrom as the two were drinking vodka and watching TV. It happened at the defendant's home in November of 2009.

Dahlstrom was living in Bogata, Colombia at the time. His body was found tied to a workbench with a knife in his chest.

Police quoted Rouillard as saying he stabbed Dahlstrom then struck him with a hammer. Officers found near the body a bloodstained maul, a tool that's both an ax and a sledge-hammer.

Rouillard is a Vietnam War veteran, and his attorney said he was long diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder. Defense attorney Mark Biller said the mental commitment was the right outcome.

Polk County District Attorney Dan Steffen said he was OK with it, as long as Rouillard is institutionalized for the rest of his life.