Burnett County sets bond for suspected serial rapistBurnett County sets $25,000 signature box for man suspected in 2006 sex assault.
A Superior man suspected of being a serial rapist made his first appearance in Burnett County Circuit Court on Monday for a bail hearing in connection with a 2006 sexual assault.
A signature bond of $25,000 was ordered in the case against Craig Allen Mehtala, 28. With a signature bond, 10 percent of the amount – $2,500 in this case – must be paid in cash to release the suspect from custody, according to the Burnett County Clerk of Courts Office.
Mehtala already faces three second-degree sexual assault charges in Douglas County. He made two initial appearances last week in Douglas County Circuit Court. Initially, he faced a single second-degree sexual assault charge. Court Commissioner Paul Baxter set bail for the case at $750 cash. The second initial appearance took place after DNA evidence linked Mehtala to another sexual assault in Douglas County. At that appearance, the complaint was amended to include three counts of second-degree sexual assault. Baxter continued the $750 cash bail.
DNA evidence from the Douglas County cases was also linked to an unsolved 2006 sexual assault in Burnett County, according to Superior Police Capt. Chad La Lor. Mehtala was detained at the Douglas County Jail for transfer to Burnett County on one count of first-degree sexual assault, according La Lor.
Mehtala remained in custody at the Burnett County Jail as of Monday afternoon. He is scheduled to return to Douglas County for a preliminary hearing in front of Baxter Wednesday morning, followed by a bail hearing in front of Douglas County Circuit Court Judge George Glonek.
All of the incidents in Douglas County involve stranger assaults, something La Lor said is quite rare. In all three cases, the attacker came up behind a woman walking alone in the dark during the early morning hours and assaulted her, according to the criminal complaint.
A criminal complaint has not been filed in the Burnett County case. Mehtala is scheduled for an initial hearing in Burnett County Court on Oct. 28.