Son charged with death of his father; mother still missing

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The son of a Wisconsin couple who went missing last week was formally accused Thursday of killing his father and dismembering his body.

Chandler Halderson, 23, who was living with his parents in Windsor, is charged in Dane County Court with first-degree intentional homicide, hiding and mutilating a corpse and providing false information on a kidnapping.

Court Commissioner Brian Asmus set bail at $1 million after arguments by prosecutors and Halderson’s attorney.

“The defendant has taken steps to both destroy and conceal evidence, including human remains that were dismembered,” prosecutor Andrea Raymond said. “Because of the vast steps that this defendant has undertaken to hide his crimes and the broad spectrum of lies police have uncovered, there is substantial concerns about his willingness to come to court.”

Chandler’s attorney, Catherine Dorl, said her client is a lifelong resident of Wisconsin, has been involved in the Boy Scouts and church groups, and has no prior criminal history. She had asked that bail be continued at $10,000.

Authorities a week ago discovered the remains of 50-year-old Bart Halderson in the town of Cottage Grove. The cause of death was listed as “homicidal violence including firearm injury.” His wife, 53-year-old Krista Halderson, remains missing.

Chandler Halderson allegedly told police his parents had planned to spend the July Fourth weekend at their cabin in White Lake in Langlade County with an unknown couple but that they never returned. The younger Halderson also said they planned to attend a parade in White Lake, but investigators said no such event was held.

Interviews with the couple’s family, friends and neighbors led investigators to a property in the county where they found Bart Halderson’s remains.

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