Oshkosh man committed for attempting to run over officers

Richard Klemz

WINNEBAGO COUNTY, Wis. (WBAY) – An Oshkosh man accused of trying to run over police officers has been committed to an institution for 80 years.

On Sept. 28, Richard Klemz entered an Alford Plea to two counts of Attempted 1st Degree Intentional Homicide and was found “guilty but not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect.” An Alford Peal means a defendant does not admit guilt to the court, but recognizes evidence in the case could lead to his conviction during a jury trial.

Four other counts against Klemz were dismissed but read into the record. He was committed to the Department of Health Services 40 years for each count.

On Dec. 10, 2015, officers responded to a domestic dispute at a home on County Road E in Winnebago County. Klemz was not there when officer arrived on scene.

A Winnebago County deputy and an Oshkosh Police officer located Klemz in the area of Witzel Avenue. At that time, Klemz backed into one of the squads and attempted to run over officers who were outside their vehicles, according to the investigation.

Klemz drove to the Algoma Town Hall where he hit another car in the parking lot and continued to aim his vehicle at officers, investigators said.

A deputy and a police officer opened fire on Klemz to stop the threat.

There were 13 shots fired during the incident. Klemz was the only person injured in the shooting. He was not armed.

A 911 caller had claimed Klemz was suicidal. A portion of that call was read during a news conference following Klemz’s arrest.

Sheriff John Matz said, “The caller, who is speaking to our dispatcher, states, ‘He’s extremely suicidal. He wants to die. He wants to die. He’d love it if the police would kill him.'”

Following a state investigation into the officer-involved shooting, Winnebago County District Attorney Christian Gossett announced the officers were justified in their use of force.

Online court records indicate Klemz wrote letters to two officers who opened fire on him.