GOVERNMENT CENTER— The Radisson man charged with killing Courtney Oustigoff in a hit-and-run incident in July of 2016 plead not guilty on Sept. 28.
The day was set for a preliminary hearing; however, Domminic Angelo Richard Haugen, 35, and his defense attorney Christopher Stephen Petros informed the court they are waiving rights to a preliminary.
A preliminary hearing is for the use of the judge to determine whether there is enough evidence to force the defendant to stand trial. Because of the waiver, this case is set for further proceedings, including trial.
A status conference is set for 2:45 p.m. Dec. 7.
According to the criminal complaint filed in Burnett County Court from February, Oustigoff was struck after 10:53 p.m. the evening of June 14 and before 6:11 a.m. the morning of June 15.
The Burnett County Sheriff’s Department received an anonymous tip that Haugen struck a female with his white Dodge pickup truck and dragged her from the point of impact.
Haugen allegedly returned to his residence to clean the truck. There, he smeared animal blood on the vehicle to hide the damage.
A search of the vehicle by authorities “revealed a piece of cloth stuck between a clamp and a hose near the transmission.” Officers also detected an odor of decomposition by the driver’s side front tire after removing the tire.
Officers collected mud caked in that area. The oil pan was damaged and some rigid fluid lines on the driver’s side of the transmission were bent – damage consistent with a strike to the vehicle from underneath. They found several areas of what appeared to be biological material on the vehicle undercarriage.
The state crime lab reported the samples were consistent with those located at the scene.
It is reported by law enforcement that Haugen admitted to a third party that he had struck Oustigoff, stating “it was an accident and he did not mean to do it,” adding he was going down the road faster than he should have been and that he ended up hitting someone. He was not sure if the person died or not and he “just took off.” The defendant said he never went back and later learned that Oustigoff was dead.
Haugen is currently in custody in Sawyer County in another open case. He faces four counts of manufacturing and delivering methamphetamine and one count of maintaining a drug trafficking place. The charges stem back to August 2016.