Tussle over gun nets felony charges against Racine man

gun
Kerwin Etchin

A 39-year-old Racine man faces seven criminal charges in Racine County Circuit Court after a man was struck with a gun on July 13.

Kerwin J. Etchin is charged with four felony counts of first-degree recklessly endangering safety, a felony count of substantial battery and misdemeanor counts of battery and disorderly conduct.

The recklessly endangering safety charges each carry a fine of $25,000 and 12 years, six months in prison, while the substantial battery charge carries a fine of $10,000 and three years, six months in prison. The two misdemeanors carry a total fine of $11,000 and a year in county jail.

According to the criminal complaint:

Officers with the Racine Police Department responded to a residence at 900 Melvin Avenue for a call that a man had been shot in the back. A woman stated she had gotten into a verbal argument with the defendant, which turned physical. The woman stated that Etchin struck her three times with a closed fist on the left side of her head and also tried to choke her.

The two had been fighting after the woman found her daughter hiding in the closet after Etchin had called the child “weak,” according to the criminal complaint.

The woman stated she called her brother to pick up her and her children because she feared the defendant was going to harm her again.

At some point, Etchin and her brother began to fight, and the woman saw the defendant display a gun. She saw him fire a round, which she believed was a “warning shot,” but it was later determined that her brother had been struck.

Police spoke to the brother, who stated he tried to shield himself after the defendant fired a round and was struck in the head with the gun. The officer observed a number of injuries to the brother, including a large laceration to the back of his head that required
stitches to close.

Etchin, who is in custody on a $25,000 bond, will be back in court for a preliminary hearing July 26 at 8:30 a.m.


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Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for Patch.com, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.