La Crosse man cited after ‘paying tree back’ by breaking branch

Man cited with disorderly conduct, damage to property

A 25-year-old La Crosse man was cited after he climbed a public tree downtown, broke a branch and said he was “paying the tree back” early Saturday morning.

La Crosse police say an officer was walking downtown at about 2:55 a.m. Saturday near Qdoba when he saw a large group of people watch Mitchel Pfaff climb a tree.

Police say once Pfaff was up the tree, he broke a branch off and threw it to the ground. He told police he was “paying the tree back” because his friend climbed the tree then fell and cracked his head open. Pfaff said that incident had happened 2-3 years ago.

La Crosse police cited Pfaff for disorderly conduct and damage to property.