News: Medford (Aebischer Trial - 1941)

Contact: Robert Lipprandt 

Surnames: Aebischer, Bird, Boor, Brown, Bueschel, Doctor, Evers, Griesser, Leicht, Piller, Risjord, Roeber, Ruesch, Smith Sternberg, Urquhardt

----Source: The Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, WI) 3/06/1941

Adjourn Inquest In Aebischer Case

Medford, Wis. - Preliminary examination of Mr. an Mrs. Frederick Aebischer on manslaughter charges today awaited conclusion of an inquest into the death of their 2-year old daughter, Gloria.

Coroner David Ruesch said the inquest would resume March 11 after a week’s adjournment.

The child was found frozen to death on the Aebischer farm near Stetsonville, Feb. 24.


----Source: The Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, WI) 3/13/1941

Child’s Death Is blamed On His Parents

Medford, Wis. - A coroner’s jury returned a verdict yesterday that Mr. and Mrs. Frederick Aebischer were intoxicated and negligent in connection with the death of their two-year-old daughter, Gloria found frozen in the Aebischer farmyard Feb. 24.

The jury recommended that the Aebischers, residents of a farm near Stetsonville, be held for trial. Among other things, it was testified that the child had been with her parents since Saturday Feb. 22, while they visited several of the taverns in the vicinity and also did much drinking at home.

The verdict was a technicality. The Aebischers have already been charge with warrants with fourth degree manslaughter, and a hearing is scheduled for next Tuesday. Aebischer is an attorney, but has lived on the farm for the last two years. Last fall he was a candidate for Taylor county district attorney.


----Source: The Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, WI) 3/19/1941

Manslaughter Charge Faced By Aebischer

Medford, Wis. - Frederick Aebischer, former Calumet county district attorney was bound over to circuit court yesterday for trail on a first degree manslaughter charge brought in connection with the death of his daughter, Gloria, 2.

The child was found frozen in the Aebischer farmyard near Stetsonville, Feb. 24. Several witnesses testified before Justice of the Peace August Roeber that Aebischer and his wife had been drinking for two days prior to the discovery of the infant’s body.

A preliminary hearing was to be held today for Mrs. Aebischer, who was named in a similar charge.

Witnesses said yesterday the Aebischers were absent from home for approximately 25 hours before the tragedy. It started with their arrival at the William Bueschel tavern and ended with Theodore Piller, a neighbor, driving them home late Sunday, February 23. Testimony was to the effect that the parents drank steadily while the baby toddled about the tavern.

The child’s body was found by Piller near the Aebischer barn, after he was awakened early the next morning by Aebischer. Aebischer, according to his conversation reported by witnesses had awakened about 4 a.m. missing the child and gone to the Paul Sternberg tavern to find out who had taken them home the night before. Sternberg, who twisted his plaid duck hunting cap as he told of the “four or five whiskies” Aebischer had in his place Sunday afternoon, said that early Monday morning call: “He seemed to be worried like - a little on needles and pins. He asked for a drink, and I said I’d give him one if he’d go look for the baby then.”

Finds Empty Bottle

Apparently the Aebischers had gone to the Sternberg place directly from the Bueschel tavern. Mrs. Bueschel stated that after she had served Mrs. Aebischer - a plump, pretty blond - “one or two whiskies,” Mrs. Aebischer lay down on the couch in the living quarters where she stayed, except for sorties to the kitchen and tavern, until early Sunday afternoon.

Mrs. Bueschel said: “I didn’t get to sleep until near morning. She kept getting up and going to the water pail. It sounded like she opened a bottle. The next morning Mr. Aebischer was on the couch, the baby on the settee and she was on the floor. After they left, I found an empty bottle back of the pail.” Both Mr. and Mrs. Bueschel said the Aebischers left with at least

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two other pint bottles, partly filled.

William Bueschel added: “Just before they went I saw Mrs. Aebischer go back of the bar and stoop down. A young fellow that was holding the baby said he heard a bottle clink and saw her take a bottle and put in inside her coat.”

Bueschel said Aebischer was sober when he came in. Sternberg, who encountered him the next day, declared: “He wasn’t so good. I couldn’t say he staggered - you know like a man ordinarily would. But in my mind he was in no condition to drive a car.”

Mr. and Mrs. Piller, who met the Aebischers at the Sternberg tavern, described Mrs. Aebischer’s “weaving” and “hanging onto the bar.” Aebischer, they said, “got worse as the afternoon wore on.”

Paul Griesser, who defeated Aebischer for district attorney of Taylor county last fall, called three witnesses who went to the Aebischer farm the morning the baby’s rigid body was discovered. They are Undersheriff Wayne Brown, E. A. Urquhardt, Medford and William J. Smith Medford. All describe Aebischer as looking and acting like a man who had been drinking.

Over objections of defense counsel, Griesser brought out evidence of Aebischer’s sporadic visits to taverns the two days prior to the extended sojourn at the bar of Feb. 22 and 23.

George Boor recounted how he drove Mrs. Aebischer on Feb. 21, to the Stetsonville tavern of John Doctor, where they found Aebischer. He said they drank there upwards of an hour. Doctor said they bought two pints of whisky to take out with them He said Aebischer had “seven or eight drinks in his place Feb. 20.”

Court records here show Aebischer was arrested twice before since he moved to Taylor county from Chilton. His driver’s license was revoked Oct. 6, 1937, for six months when he pleaded guilty to drunken driving. On March 8, 1940, he was fined $10 and costs for neglecting his cattle.

His wife was committed to the State Hospital for the Insane at Winnebago Jan 2, 1940. She was paroled to her husband April 29, 1940.

Unless the defense moves for change of venue, Aebischer’s trial will be before Judge G. Risjord of Ashland in the fall term of the court in September.


----Source: The Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, WI) 7/17/1941

Woman Defendant In Medford Case Is Found In Car

Milwaukee - Police today arrested a woman in a carnival railroad car here whom they identified as Mrs. Esther Aebischer, defendant with her husband, Frederick, on a first degree manslaughter charge in the death of their 2-year old daughter, Gloria, Feb 24.

She was held for investigation and police notified Taylor county authorities at Medford where the case is spending in circuit court. The child was found frozen to death in her parents’ farmyard near Stetsonville.

Witnesses at a hearing before Justice of the Peace August Roeber last spring accused the Aebischers of heavy drinking in a round of taverns the night before the child’s body was found.

Aebischer formerly practiced law in Elko, Nev., and once was district attorney in Calumet county, Wis.


----Source: The Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, WI) 11/18/1941

Aebischer Trial Will Be Conducted In Wausau Court

Wausau, Wis. - Mr. and Mrs. Frederick Aebischer, Stetsonville, accused of first degree manslaughter in connection with the death of their 3-year-old daughter, Gloria, will be tried here on a change of venue during the fall term of the Marathon county circuit court opening Nov. 24.

The child froze to death Feb. 23, and Aebischer and his wife were charge with having become intoxicated and neglecting her. The defendants claim that the child walked away from their farmhouse while they were asleep.

The change of venue was ordered by Circuit Judge G. N. Risjord, Ashland.


----Source: The Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, WI) 11/24/1941

Aebischer Trial Postponed Because of Judge’s Death

Wausau, Wis. - Opening of the fall term of Marathon county circuit court, scheduled to include the first degree manslaughter trial of Mr. and Mrs. Frederick Aebischer, Stetsonville, was postponed today because of the death Nov. 1 of Judge George J. Leicht.

Charges were brought against Aebischer and his wife in connection with the death by exposure of their daughter, Gloria, 3, last Feb. 23. The couple was accused of becoming intoxicated and neglecting the child.

The case was to be tried here as the result of a change of venue ordered by Circuit Judge G. N. Risjord, Ashland.

Walter A. Evers, court reporter, said a conference would be held her to set a new date for the opening of the fall term.


----Source: The Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, WI) 1/19/1942

Aebischer Trial Set For May 12

Wausau, Wis. - Frederick Aebischer, former Calumet county district attorney charge with criminal negligence in the death of his four-year-old daughter, Gloria, was scheduled to be tried at the opening of the spring term of Marathon county circuit court here May 12.

The defendant’s wife, Esther, who faces the same charge, will be tried separately. Both pleaded innocent to a charge of fourth degree manslaughter when they were brought before Circuit Judge Claire B. Bird here Saturday.

They were accused of permitting the child to wander on the night of Feb. 23, 1941, into the yard of their farm home near Stetsonville, Wis., where she froze to death, according to authorities. Their cases were transferred here from Taylor county.


----Source: The Sheboygan Press (Sheboygan, WI) 5/14/1942

Explain Law On dismissal Of Aebischer

Wausau, Wis. - Frederick Aebischer, 47-year-old Stetsonville stock farmer and former Calumet county district attorney was free today of first degree man slaughter charges based on the death of his two-year-old daughter, Gloria.

Circuit Judge Claire B. Bird granted a defense motion for dismissal of the case late yesterday. Aebischer and his wife, Esther, were accused by Taylor county officers of being intoxicated and of failing to make sure that their daughter was brought into the house at the Aebischer farm the night of Feb. 23, 1941.

The infant was found death of exposure in the farmyard the following morning. Taylor county officers testified that the parents appeared to be still under the influence of liquor when the child’s death was investigated on Feb. 24.

Judge Bird explained the dismissal by saying, “I see nothing in the intoxication of the defendant under these circumstances to evince an utter and wanton disregard for the rights of others.”

The court further explained that Wisconsin’s law differed from those of other states in that no degree of inadvertent action can be used as a basis to support a charge of first degree manslaughter in this state.

The first degree manslaughter charge still was pending against Aebischer’s wife, Esther. She remained at liberty under $5,000 bond but Dist. Atty. Paul Griesser of Taylor county asserted that he would go through with her trail. It was carried over to the next term of court in November.

Note: No further information has been found online of the trial of Esther Aebischer.



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