A Wisconsin dairy farmer appeared in court on Friday, facing the possibility of jail time after being accused of selling food and dairy products, including raw milk, without a license.
According to Channel3000, Vernon Hershberger was prepared to be sentenced to jail after prosecutors claimed he violated his bond conditions, but Judge Guy Reynolds declined to revoke the bond. Reynolds said that the state must file a formal motion before he would be able to take action on Hershberger’s bond.
Attorneys with the state Department of Justice declined to say why the formal motion was not filed.
Hershberger represented himself in court, stating that he did not violate any terms of the bond and doesn’t sell raw milk. According to Hershberger, he cares for animals and produces their food for members of a private food buyers club.
"I have no jurisdiction about what happens,” Hershberger said told Channel3000. “The food belongs to the other people, and I do not have jurisdiction to tell them what happens with that food. (I) just wanted you to know."
Although Reynolds kept Hershberger from jail, he did have a warning for the dairy farmer.
“I admonish you, Mr. Hershberger, that you are to follow my bond conditions," Reynolds said. "And, I expect you will. And if you don't, you can be separately prosecuted for that."
Hershberger will return to court on Sept. 25 to be tried on the four misdemeanor charges. Prosecutors still must file responses to Hershberger’s claim that a judge has no constitutional authority to hear the case.