SHAWANO CO., Wis. (WFRV) – A local man was recently arrested after he told police his military truck was shot at and later led deputies on a chase along Highway 29.
According to a criminal complaint, Shawano County deputies were alerted to the truck driving with a blown tire near Robin Road in Wittenberg around 5:15 p.m. Sunday, May 8.
Deputies say when they got near the truck it was hard to see due to all of the dust and dirt being kicked into the air because it was driving over the median area. They confirm the truck was a green camouflaged M35 Deuce.
The Sheriff’s Office estimates the truck was traveling 25 to 30 miles per hour with a missing front tire and a blown rear tire.
After deputies turned on their lights to alert the driver, they say they had to move in front of the truck to be able to get it to stop.
When deputies asked the driver why he was driving on the road, they say he responded by saying his back tire had been shot and deputies should check the satellites following him. He added he didn’t call it in because he didn’t have a phone with him.
The driver went on to explain to law enforcement that he did speak with dispatch through a “psychic conversation” and they said it was alright to drive on the road. Deputies say in the complaint that throughout the conversation the driver did not want to turn off or get out of the truck to talk.
In the complaint, the deputy does say they were informed that the driver was part of an incident the week before involving PTSD and shooting a gun into the air.
Throughout the whole conversation, deputies say the driver told them he was a military veteran and believe the truck was “sovereign” and he needed to protect it because “it was protected by a declaration of war.” At one point, deputies were able to look into the cab of the truck and say they believe they saw a rifle bag laying on the passenger seat.
Due to the way the driver was acting, law enforcement did send backup, including two snowplow trucks.
Before he was arrested, deputies say the driver somehow drove away and, while trying to get him out of the truck after it was forcefully stopped, they had to use Conducted Electronic Weapons (CEW) multiple times and pepper spray.
The criminal complaint identifies the driver of the military truck as Aaron Renel of Cecil.
Charges against Renel include:
- Attempting to flee or elude an officer (Class I Felony)
- Resisting an officer (Class A Misdemeanor)
- Second degree recklessly endangering safety (Class G Felony)
If Renel is convicted of the Class I Felony, he could face a fine of more than $10,000, be imprisoned for more than three years and 6 months, or both. For the Class A Misdemeanor, he could face another $10,000, or imprisonment for 9 months, or be convicted of both. Due to the Class G Felony, Renel could have to pay $25,000, be imprisoned for nearly 10 years, or face both if convicted.