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Sunday, March 8, 2020

Gender-Neutral Restroom Assault

     Rhinelander, Wisconsin is an Oneida County town of 8,000 in the northern tip of the state. On February 27, 2020, deputies with the Oneida County Sheriff's Department arrested Rhinelander High School senior Austin Sauer for the crime of fourth-degree sexual assault. The 18-year-old stood accused of exposing his genitals to a female student in the school's gender-neutral restroom.

     On March 3, 2020, school superintendent Kelli Jacobi issued the following statement regarding the arrest and alleged crime: This was not a random incident, as both students went to the bathroom voluntarily. The male student [Austin Sauer] will no longer be able to be on school grounds, and the bathroom is no longer available to students." The superintendent added that while the parents of the two students were notified, the school did not notify all of the parents because the "incident" was not a random act. After Austin Sauer's arrest, however, everyone in the community read about the alleged crime in the newspaper, or saw it on television news.

     The suspect posted his $1,500 signature bond and was released from custody. 

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