OCONTO COUNTY - An Oconto County home that was the site of a murder four years ago has been torn down.
Monday, the yard is overgrown, and the building has been replaced with a large hole in the ground.
The Oconto County Highway Department spent much of the day transforming the site.
The county owns the property in the Town of Chase.
It's where back in 2009, Randall Staeven killed his wife Christy and started the house on fire.
She died, but three children escaped.
An Oconto County backhoe cracks through the foundation where the Staeven house once stood.
"We're demolishing a building that the county got back. And taking it to the landfill. Taking the concrete and burying it. We'll re-seed it," said Ed Olson, Oconto County Highway Department.
Four years ago, Randall Staeven killed his estranged wife Christy Staeven, and set the house on fire to cover it up.
With Staeven serving life for the crime, the county estimates $3,800 in property taxes have not been paid.
"He did not pay tax year 2008, tax year 2011, and tax year 2012," said Mark Teuteberg, Oconto County Land Information Systems Administrator.
Mark Teuteberg says the county took over the one acre property in July, and wants to turn it into a vacant lot and sell it.
"When I recently looked at the assessed value, a little over $20,000 on the improvements, which is down because of the fire, and just a little over $20,000 for the land. The fair market value is just over $42,000," said Teuteberg.
Over the weekend, the Pulaski Tri-County Fire Department set fire to the building again, this time for practice.
"I think they were in by 9:30, and I think 11:30 they were basically finished with the practice burn," said Teuteberg.
Wally Stachura owns land in the area. He says the old property housed difficult memories.
"It will look better because it was an eyesore, the old burnt out house. So it will be an improvement," said Wally Stachura, Town of Chase.
"We realize that there was an image out there, that we want to eliminate from the community. Just to maybe resolve some of the terrible tragedy that was there. The memories can never be taken away, but at least the building is gone," said Teuteberg.
We could not reach any family members for comment.
Work on the property is expected to be finished by Tuesday.
The legal process could take another year before the lot can be sold at auction.
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