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Wausau Newman coach charged with possessing child porn, held on $75,000 bond

by
Michael Switalski
Michael Switalski

WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAU) -- The Wausau Newman coach accused of having child pornography videos is being held on a $75,000 cash bond after a Monday court appearance. 50-year-old Michael Switalski faces eight felony counts of possessing the illegal movies.

Prosecutor Theresa Wetzsteon says they were tipped off after a Canadian company was shut down for selling pornographic videos of children, and found Switalski on the customer list. Wetzsteon says when a search warrant was executed at Switalski’s home, they found the videos including one in the DVD player.  “These were items that were found in the defendant’s residence, that he lived there alone, the orders from the videos were directly to his residence with his phone number accompanying his orders, his email address accompanying these orders. One DVD that was ordered was actually found in his DVD player.”

Switalski has been known for school and community involvement for many years, but must stay away from schools and children if he does post bond. Wetzsteon says that may be hard for many in the community to understand and accept right now.  “I know that there will be a lot of people in the community who are supportive of the defendant because they have had interactions with him in the past, but I think it’s very important that if there is going to be continued support, that it be informed support, and that they become aware of what is going on in this case.”

The District Attorney’s office is urging people to stay informed, and Wetzsteon says they will release additional information as warranted since the investigation is continuing and additional charges are very possible.  “I just want the public to understand that this isn’t something that we take lightly. We understand that he is a very important member of this community, but these charges are very serious, and it’s very important that the public have accurate information and that they stay informed.”

Switalski has been placed on suspension at Wausau Newman High School. The charges could put him in prison for up to three years per count, or 24 years for these initial eight charges.

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