The Roberts police chief was charged last week in St. Croix County Circuit Court with multiple felonious counts of child abuse.

Aaron W. McWilliams, 41, is facing three counts of causing mental harm to a child and six counts of physical abuse of a child. The mental harm is a Class F Felony and the physical abuse is a Class H felony.

His next court appearance was a preliminary hearing scheduled for June 25.

According to the criminal complaint:

Eau Claire County Sheriff’s Office Detectives and Social Workers conducted the investigation earlier this month with charges stemming back as far as July 2015 through February 2020.

McWilliams’ wife explained the two are the parents of four children, while she has two adult children. She said one of the children has autism and McWilliams told the child “go be autistic somewhere else” and has called him “Rainman”.

The autistic child told law enforcement he was scared of his dad “in the past tense yes, present tense, not so much, but still a little bit.” He also added, if McWilliams found them in the garage “you get sent to your room and if you refuse to go, it’s an ear pull.”

Another child described McWilliams as “normally in the garage drinking and smoking” when he was home. The child described multiple spanking incidents along with getting “slapped on the back of the head”. The victim also added “everyone” has had bruises from McWilliams. The victim estimated the negative behavior was ongoing for the last three to four years.

Another child explained what he didn’t like about his dad and he replied, “…he would hit us, scream at us.” He described an incident in which he was struck in the left forearm and with an open hand. He concluded his interview by saying “I don’t trust him with just me” when asked on how he would feel by being alone with McWilliams.

Another child was then interviewed. She recalls being kicked out of the house by McWilliams when she was 14 years old (she’s now 18) for driving a Gator around the yard. She also told the story of burning her hand on a pot when she was eight years old and McWilliams yelling at her for being stupid and telling her she deserved to get burned. She also told the story of a spanking incident in which she saw a visible handprint after the spanking.

She was asked what was her mother’s role if she saw the spanking incidents. She replied her mother would yell at McWilliams to stop, but he wouldn’t.

The final interview was done with the oldest adult child, now 23. He said he was never disciplined by McWilliams “because he would stay down in my room away from everyone else.” He described McWilliams as loud and prideful.

McWilliams has been placed on leave from the Roberts Police Department.

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