Driver towing van and child sentenced for endangerment

Published 4:17pm Saturday, January 18, 2014

AUSTIN — A 35-year-old charged for making a 7-year-old steer a van while being towed was sentenced Friday in Mower County District Court.

Tobius August Wilking of Austin was sentenced to one year of probation and 40 hours of community service for gross misdemeanor child endangerment.

Officers went to 12th Avenue and Fourth Street Northwest on April 15, 2013, after a report of a crash. According to the court complaint, Wilking had the young girl steer a van while he towed it with a truck. However, the girl veered toward the curb and struck a tree. Witnesses said they saw the girl in the van, and added the truck backed up and tried to tow the van again, which struck the tree a second time.