By Lisa Pett
A Wisconsin Rapids man is facing charges of harassment after he allegedly tried to extort sex via text message.
Christopher Austin, 20 of Wisconsin Rapids, appeared via video in Portage County circuit court on Monday to after he allegedly intimidated a local woman and tried to extort her to have sex with him via text messages.
According to court records, the victim had loaned Austin $160 to pay a warrant fee. When the woman sent Austin a text message asking to be repaid, Austin allegedly began an exchange via text message demanding the woman have sex with him before he would repay the money.
The victim reported the exchange to law enforcement but continued to receive text messages, allegedly sent by Austin, this time telling her that he would not repay the money unless she dropped the charges.
Police investigation led to a female third party who claimed to have sent the texts, but the woman later admitted to police that she only claimed to have sent them because Austin asked her to, according to Assistant District Attorney David Knaapen.
ADA Knaapnen requested an $800 cash bond, citing an open case in which Austin is charged with obstructing an officer and possessing a switchblade in Adams County.
Austin was freed on a $500 cash bond and ordered to have no contact with the victim. He is due back in court on June 8.