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The life of Eric Hainstock: A timeline

Hainstock in third grade: Psychological reports document a lifetime of abuse and neglect.
Hainstock in third grade: Psychological reports document a lifetime of abuse and neglect.
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This chronology is drawn from psychological reports from experts who had access to school, court, social service and mental health records.

April 4, 1991: Born in La Crosse, Wis., the only son of Shawn Hainstock, then 20, and Lisa Marie Buttke, 19.

November 1993: Parents file for divorce.

1993-1996: Shawn Hainstock, now in Reedsburg, has several intakes for depression and anger issues at a mental health center.

April 1995: Eric, on turning 4, is evaluated for kindergarten in Reedsburg and found to be one to two years behind in language and other skills.

August 1995: Shawn Hainstock gains custody of Eric. He discontinues Eric's use of Ritalin for attention deficient hyperactivity disorder and pulls him from therapy after a single session.

December 1995: A woman Shawn Hainstock is dating obtains a harassment restraining order against him, then one to protect her children. She says Shawn used "frequent and severe spankings" to discipline Eric.

March 1996: Eric, still 4, is brought by his father to the Sauk County mental health unit for temper tantrums and "inappropriate sexual behaviors."

April 1997: A Reedsburg school evaluation finds Eric, having just turned 6, has significant problems with inappropriate behaviors, temper tantrums and aggression. He cries often and hits himself, at times needing to be physically restrained. This same month, Shawn Hainstock marries a woman named Priscilla.

July 1997: A police report states that Eric has been sexually abused by his 13-year-old stepbrother during visits to his mother for about a year, including fondling and "digital/anal penetration." The report also says his mother's new husband would kick and hit him. As a result, visitation with his mother is curtailed.

September 1997: An abuse probe is launched after Eric comes to school with a split lip from his dad. Abuse is not substantiated, but authorities deem Eric at risk and refer the family for treatment services; Shawn Hainstock does not follow through.

November 1997: An evaluation describes Eric as "desperate" to please adults and disruptive in class; his behavior is said to have deteriorated from the previous year.

1999: Hainstock's mother is sentenced to 60 days in jail for failure to pay child support.

February 1999: Seven-year-old Eric's unruly school behavior prompts another evaluation. It finds significant problems with anxiety, depression, hyperactivity, aggression and social skills.

December 1999: Eric, now 8, runs away from home after being punished by his father. Police find him past midnight sleeping on bales of hay, wet and cold; he is taken to the emergency room with mild hypothermia. He tells police he does not want to live with his father and stepmother anymore.

January 2000: Eric punches a student who takes his hat, knocking out a tooth.

March 2000: Lisa Marie terminates parental rights, and Priscilla adopts him.

May 2000: A school nurse puts Eric on a low dose of Ritalin. The improvement is dramatic; he's "well behaved, polite [and] respectful," but problems with impulse control and hyperactivity remain. The medication stops when the school year ends.

September 2000: Following a move, Eric, now 9, begins fourth grade in Wonewoc. He bites a student who gets on top of him. The next day, he doesn't come home from school and is found hiding in a public restroom, expressing fear about his father's reaction to his misbehavior.

October 2000: Eric is again prescribed Ritalin, and again his grades and behavior dramatically improve.

June 2001: A progress report says Eric, 10, is no longer taking Ritalin, resulting in "setbacks in progress."

September 2001: Police are called after Eric's father kicks him several times for botching chores. They learn he also makes Eric hold hot sauce on his tongue and hits him with a paddle marked "Board of Education." At one point, Shawn Hainstock tells authorities they can keep his son. Eric is removed and placed with Irene Hainstock, his father's mother. Shawn is charged with felony child abuse, later reduced to misdemeanor battery and ultimately dismissed.

Fall 2001: Eric's behavior deteriorates. He disrupts class, reports nightmares and fears of dying, makes threats of suicide. He kicks a peer and is suspended for bringing powdered magnesium to school, saying it was drugs.

Winter 2001: Eric, now with his grandmother, resumes taking Ritalin, and his behavior and school performance improve.

April 2002: Shawn Hainstock regains custody of Eric, now 11.

September 2002: Eric transfers to Weston Schools for sixth grade.

April 2003: A review finds Eric, now 12, has a "severe attention deficit problem that needs to be addressed through medication," but his father and stepmother object to his receiving it.

2003-2004: Eric has multiple detentions and is removed from classrooms an average of twice a week. He has to repeat sixth grade. A report calls him "very immature and emotional," saying he cries often. He is physically assaulted by another student. Sauk County officials receive two neglect referrals - one after Eric comes to school shirtless after being up late doing chores; one deeming him "filthy and smelling." Neglect is not substantiated.

March 2005: Now in the seventh grade, Eric is academically at a fourth- or fifth-grade level and has significant problems with learning, behavior and depression. His parents oppose counseling or other treatment, with his father saying he "is doing better with discipline."

2005-2006: A school psychologist notes in an undated report that eighth-grader Eric is "often hungry because his father would not pay for the discount lunch (30-40 cents)."

February 2006: Police are called to Weston after Eric, 14, becomes angry at another student and a teacher and throws chairs.

Sept. 14, 2006: Eric, 15, quarrels with a student and throws a stapler at a teacher. He is charged with second-degree recklessly endangering safety, disorderly conduct and criminal damage. Several days later he has a physical altercation with his adoptive mother that leaves him with bite marks on his arm and chest. (She later denies biting his chest.) She is not charged.

Sept. 29, 2006: Eric Hainstock goes to school with two guns and fatally shoots principal John Klang.

March 2007: A psychologist interviewing Eric notices he has cut the words "Fuck you" into his forearm. He explains that he is referring to himself.

April 2007: After a hearing, a Sauk County judge refuses to waive Eric's case back into juvenile court.

July 26, 2007: Hainstock's trial starts in Sauk County court, in Baraboo.

Aug. 2, 2007: A jury finds him guilty of first-degree intentional homicide.

Aug. 3, 2007: Judge Patrick Taggart sentences Eric to life in prison, with his first eligibility for parole in 2037. Shawn Hainstock tells reporters, "We love our son."

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