Woman sentenced to six years in prison
Hardegen convicted of two heroin overdose deaths
Waupaca County Judge Raymond Huber sentenced April Hardegen, 31, to six years in state prison and four years of extended supervision.
Hardegen appeared in court for sentencing Wednesday, June 29.
On Feb. 24, she entered guilty pleas to two counts of first-degree reckless homicide in the 2021 heroin-overdose deaths of Kendra Rateau, 24, New London, and Jordan May, 33, Lind.
Two deaths in six weeks
On April 22, 2021, New London police responded to a call for a welfare check on Rateau.
She had missed work for two days and nobody had seen her recently.
When officers entered Rateau’s apartment, they found her body, gem bags of heroin and methamphetamine.
An autopsy found that Rateau died of an overdose of heroin and fentanyl.
On May 30, 2021, Waupaca County deputies were dispatched to May’s home in Lind.
Deputy Curtis Much was the first to arrive. He found May lying motionless on the floor. His lips were purplish blue and his skin was pale. There was a syringe on the floor.
Paramedics arrived and were initially unable to detect a heartbeat.
They administered Narcan and chest compressions until they were able to restore May’s heartbeat.
May was airlifted to a hospital, where he was declared brain dead on June 1, then removed from life support on June 5.
Hardegen has been in custody on a $100,000 cash bond since Aug. 2, 2021.
Huber’s sentence included 392 days credit for her time in jail.
Others charged in in deaths
Aaron B. Van Dyke, 32, New London, was also charged with reckless homicide for his alleged role in Rateau’s overdose. His case remains open and he remains in custody on a $100,000 cash bond.
Three others were charged in May’s death.
Patrick M. Rhoden, 36, Appleton, was charged with first-degree reckless homicide as party to a crime, delivery of heroin and delivery of methamphetamine. He was convicted of delivery of heroin as party to a crime and the reckless homicide charge was dropped. Huber sentenced then stayed 60 days in jail and placed Rhoden on five years of probation.
Jessica A. Bell, 40, Wisconsin Rapids, was charged with first-degree reckless homicide as party to a crime, first-degree reckless endangerment, delivery of heroin, delivery of methamphetamine and possession of methamphetamine. She remains in custody on a $50,000 cash bond.
Demargieon P. Hillard-Carter, 21, Milwaukee, was charged with first-degree reckless homicide as party to a crime. He remains in custody on a $50,000 cash bond.