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Police searching for La Crosse woman, child; father not cooperating, authorities say

Police searching for La Crosse woman, child; father not cooperating, authorities say

From the Year in review: Some of the biggest crime stories of 2019 in the La Crosse area series
Tracy Cadogan


La Crosse police asked for help Friday in locating a La Crosse woman and her sick 1-month-old child while the child’s father was in La Crosse County Circuit Court.

The La Crosse Police Department put out a Facebook post Friday afternoon asking for people to contact authorities with information about the whereabouts of Tracy Cadogan, 40, and her son, who is in need of critical medical attention.

Police were called Thursday to Cadogan’s residence on the 800 block of West Avenue South by La Crosse County Child Protective Services after a social worker raised concerns that the baby hadn’t been taken to the hospital to be treated for jaundice, a condition that causes yellow discoloration in a baby’s skin and eyes and can indicate severe health problems, according to Mayo Clinic Health System’s website.

The social worker told police she was concerned that, if untreated, the baby could develop brain damage, according to court records.

Volante Feist


Police found the child’s father, Volante C. Feist of La Crosse, at the residence, despite bond conditions forbidding him from contacting Cadogan or her residence, according to court records. Feist was charged Friday with felony bail jumping, according to court records.

While Feist was in court, La Crosse County Circuit Court Judge Elliott Levine asked him to give law enforcement any information he had about Cadogan’s location, saying, “It might be life or death for the child, if the child doesn’t get to the hospital.”

According to the criminal complaint, the social worker had been attempting to contact the family for a week, and on Dec. 20 spoke to Feist, 30, who refused to provide information about where Cadogan and the child were, according to records.

When police arrived at the residence early Thursday afternoon, nobody answered. Child protective services received a warrant about 4:15 p.m. Thursday from Levine to enter any residence to locate the baby and take him to the hospital for medical treatment.

They found Feist, who acknowledged he wasn’t supposed to be in the residence and refused to answer any questions about the whereabouts of Cadogan or the infant. When police asked if the child was alive, Feist said, “Yeah, she is a good mother; he is fine,” according to the complaint.

He also gave conflicting answers about when he last saw the child.

Feist was out on bond Thursday in connection with a Dec. 12 incident, in which he was charged with false imprisonment and disorderly conduct, both as a repeat offender. Feist was accused of tackling Cadogan and holding her down Dec. 12 while she was holding the infant. According to the criminal complaint, the victim told police Feist had drank an entire bottle of spiced rum, then refused to let her leave their residence.

Feist was previously convicted of causing mental harm to a child and fourth-degree sexual assault after he pleaded guilty to assaulting a 16-year-old when he was 21. He also has previous convictions for possession of methamphetamine, burglary, trespassing, theft and disorderly conduct.


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