Charges: Wisconsin man beat, strangled, shot wife before fleeing with children

An Osceola man is facing charges in Polk County after allegedly beating and shooting his wife.

Jared Danger Ler’che, 41, was charged Wednesday with one count of first-degree intentional homicide and one count of domestic abuse, according to court records.

Ler’che was arrested in Osceola after law enforcement discovered his wife, previously identified as 34-year-old Margaret Ler’che, dead in the basement of their home.

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A criminal complaint states Polk County deputies went to check on Margaret on Jan. 22, 2024, after her father contacted authorities for a welfare check.

Deputies found Margaret badly beaten and lying in a pool of blood, the complaint said. She had a black cord wrapped tightly around her neck and several injuries on her face and head, including a portion of her skull that was caved in.

Margaret’s father told deputies that she and Jared were having marital problems, and she was set to move in with her father that day.

Deputies said a shotgun and unfired ammunition was found near Margaret, who had a visible gunshot wound on the back of her head.

The complaint indicates evidence showed Margaret was beaten and dragged into a different room before being shot.

Prior to discovering the victim, Polk County authorities were told a Minnesota crisis line had gotten in touch with the St. Paul Police Department and notified them that a man named Jared Ler’che had contacted the crisis line. While in contact with the crisis line, he said he was driving around with his two children and having thoughts of suicide. At that point, Jared’s phone pinged to Cannon Falls.

Deputies spoke on the phone with Jared multiple times, and he refused to give them a location or discuss Margaret, apart from accusing her of having an affair, according to the complaint. He eventually agreed to meet a deputy with the two children at a Kwik Trip near the residence.

When speaking with the deputy, Jared made several statements about his wife having an affair and refused to meet law enforcement at the residence.

At that same time, law enforcement searched the home and discovered Margaret’s body. Jared was arrested, and law enforcement noted he was reaching for a shotgun on the floor as deputies tried to arrest him.

If you or anyone you know is struggling with domestic violence, call the Day One Hotline 24/7 at 866.223.1111 or text 612.399.9995. The National Domestic Violence Hotline is also available 24/7 at 800-799-7233. Both resources are entirely confidential.

Additionally, if you or someone you know is thinking of harming themselves, you can call or text the suicide prevention hotline at 988.

Ler’che is due back in court on Jan. 30.