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Viroqua man wanted in hammer attack
joseph bingenheimer
Joseph Bingenheimer is suspected of hitting another man in the head with a hammer and then fleeing authorities. A warrant has been issued for his arrest. - photo by Contributed/Vernon County Sheriff's Office

A rural Viroqua man is wanted by authorities after allegedly attacking another man with a hammer  June 6 in Franklin township.

According to a press release from the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office in Viroqua, at 12:22 p.m., a woman placed a 911 call reporting that a man struck another man, in the head, with a hammer at a mobile home.  After deputies arrived, the victim was identified as Thomas Helgerson, 34 of Green Acres Road, rural Viroqua. He was transported to Vernon Memorial Healthcare in Viroqua, by Tri-State Ambulance, to be treated for head injuries and was expected to be released later in the day.

Witnesses identified the assailant as Joseph Bingenheimer, 31, from the same address as the victim.  He was last seen by witnesses, on foot, running into a wooded area.  Bingenheimer is a Caucasian male about 5’8” tall, weighs about 190 pounds, has brown hair and brown eyes.  He was last seen wearing a brown colored Corona Beer t-shirt, blue jeans, and brown shoes.

Both Sheriff K-9’s and the Combined Tactical Team were utilized, but after an extensive search of the area, Bingenheimer was not found.

Although Spears does not feel the public is in any danger, individuals should not approach Bingenheimer and should call 911 or local law enforcement if he is seen or if they have any information as to Bingenheimer’s whereabouts.

Assisting the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office were the Viroqua Police Department, Wisconsin State Patrol, and the Combined Tactical Unit made of members from the Sheriff’s Office, and Hillsboro, Viroqua, and Westby police.

The incident remains under investigation.