Man charged in Beloit shooting might go free

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Frank Schultz
Tuesday, May 16, 2017

JANESVILLE—A Beloit man charged in a shooting Oct. 9 might walk free because witnesses won't cooperate with the prosecution.

A victim and another witness have refused to help prosecutors, so Assistant District Attorney Mary Bricco asked in Rock County Court on Tuesday that a trial scheduled to start Monday be postponed.

Judge John Wood said he was not pleased with the development, but he agreed to wait and see if prosecutors can convince the witnesses to testify.

The case had been set for trial starting Monday. Wood set a hearing June 21 to give the prosecution time to work on getting the witnesses in court.

The case is that of Ronald L. Rudd Jr., 28, of 1852 Harrison Ave., Beloit, who is charged with attempted first-degree intentional homicide.

One victim does not respond to requests from the district attorney's office.

Another witness told prosecutors he or she would not testify, Bricco said.

Defense attorney Kelly Mattingly objected to the delay but said he understands the problem. He also has had trouble with some witnesses, he said.

Wood was obliged to lift the bond keeping Rudd in jail, but Rudd is also being held on a retainer in a federal case, which will keep him in custody for the moment, Bricco said.

No one at the hearing Tuesday discussed why the witnesses would not help.

“This is not Mr. Rudd's fault,” Bricco said.

Wood said if the witnesses will not cooperate, he expects a motion from prosecutors to dismiss the case.

EDITOR'S NOTE: The original version of this story used the photo and identity of a different defendant in a separate case, Michael J. Ruud Jr., 25, of 4544 N. County Y, Milton, who is charged with burglaries in Janesville, Milton and the town of Turtle in October, November and December 2016.

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