An Eau Claire man is accused of beating the 69-year-old man he lived with.
Steven K. Scharein, 28, 1206 First Ave., is charged in Eau Claire County Court with felony counts of intimidation of a victim and aggravated battery of an elderly person, and two misdemeanor counts of disorderly conduct.
A $5,000 signature bond was set for Scharein, who returns to court Feb. 21.
As conditions of bond, Scharein cannot have contact with the man, drink alcohol or enter taverns.
According to the criminal complaint:
An Eau Claire police officer responded to a residence on East Madison Street Sunday to meet with the 69-year-old man.
The man was shaken up and felt afraid.
The man said Scharein and his family lived with him since June. Before she died, the man said, his wife asked him to take care of Scharein.
The man described Scharein as a close family friend whom he wanted to help maintain his sobriety.
On Jan. 2, Scharein lost his job and came home angry. The man believed Scharein was intoxicated and may have been under the influence of drugs.
When the man confronted Scharein about breaking his sobriety, Scharein punched the man in the jaw with a closed fist and then struck him three more times in the head.
The man said his mouth hurt for two days, and he struggled to chew food.
The man did not call law enforcement after the incident because Scharein said he would kill him if he did.
Scharein continued to drink alcohol over the next few days, and the man tried to avoid him.
On Jan. 6, Scharein returned to the residence after drinking alcohol. The man asked him to leave.
Scharein got angry and picked up a knife on the kitchen counter. He lifted the knife over the man’s head and said he could do whatever he wanted.
The man said he feared for his life.
The officer contacted and arrested Scharein.
Scharein said the man “verbally instigated” things, which made him angry.
As for the Jan. 2 incident, Scharein said things turned physical but he did not remember what happened.
Scharein said he could have beaten the man up. If he did so, it was because the man was “pushing his buttons.”
Scharein is being prosecuted as a repeat offender. He was convicted of a felony count of bail jumping in March 2017 in Eau Claire County.
If convicted of the felony charges, Scharein could be sentenced to up to eight years in prison.
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