Skip to Content

Legal Saga of Self-Identified “Sovereign Being” Campground Owner Continues

Campground owner Ann Retzlaff continues to make news headlines. 

We’ve covered her story a couple of times these past few years. However, Retzlaff’s outlaw history is still being written, from her no mask policies to her high-speed run from the fuzz.

So now, what has Ann done?

Let’s take a look!

Ann Retzlaff’s Troubled History

At first glance, Annie’s Campground seems like a somewhat typical, family-friendly campsite. Located northwest of Greenbay, Wisconsin, Annie’s could be an RVer’s stopover on a trip to Superior National Forest. But you’ve got to be ok with her rules.

Annie’s website clearly states Ann Retzlaff’s camp regulations: “no commies, thieves, illegal substances, Antifa, BLM or other terrorists.” She includes a clause for those who have chosen to take “the bioweapon” and what herbs and medications you must take before entering camp. 

As far as playing by the rules, Ann doesn’t give state nor federal law the same courtesy. Her refusal to abide by Wisconsin State COVID protocol has been one of many charges against her in the past three years.

No Masks Allowed

Shawona County Sheriff’s office began receiving complaints in March 2020 when Annie’s campground stayed open after the state issued the “Safer At Home” order. Not only did Annie’s remain open with live events, but Retzlaff also issued a campground ban on masks.

Annie’s Campground garnered national headlines after their May 15, 2020, Facebook message about the mask ban. “Masks are NOT allowed in the buildings for safety sake. They are viewed as a robbery in progress and will be handled that way.” 

Although we don’t see any updates to the Annie’s Campground Facebook page since December 2020, we suspect the mask ban still stands.

Posing as a Deputy

As you might imagine, Retzlaff’s policies were met with polarizing responses. Some folks applauded her for taking a stand and sticking to her principles. According to Fox News 11, the Shawano Sheriff Bieber refused to cite Retzlaff as he saw the COVID laws as unconstitutional.

We have no official word on how he felt about her next move.

By December 2020, Ann Retzlaff was fed up with those who voiced concern and criticism of her campground policies. After a call to the campground from a citizen concerned about their COVID policies, Retzlaff called the citizen back. 

The problem was Retzlaff claimed to be a Shawano County Deputy. Posing as Deputy, Retzlaff told the citizen to stop calling the campsite, or they would face charges.

After admitting wrongdoing, Retzlaff failed to appear in court and was issued a judgment.

Police Chase

In early May 2021, Ann fled from police after running a red light. What could have been a run-of-the-mill citation quickly escalated into multiple felony charges. Four police vehicles pursued Retzlaff in a high-speed chase. At first, even spike strips and four flat tires didn’t stop her.

When Retzlaff finally stopped, she refused to open her door and sped away again, almost hitting two officers. But one can only drive so fast with four flats. Police eventually arrested her after breaking her car window to unlock the doors.

Retzlaff claimed she was doing nothing wrong during the struggle, as she was rescuing an employee from sex traffickers. She also stated she’s a sovereign citizen and did not have to abide by the officer’s requests. According to the FBI, the sovereign citizen movement is considered a growing domestic terrorist threat.

The state charged Ann Retzlaff with two counts of recklessly endangering safety, one count of vehicle operator fleeing, and one count of resisting arrest.

Court Date No-Shows

Given that Retzlaff considers herself exempt from United States law, it’s no wonder she has played hooky from her court dates. Her failure to appear in court on October 26, 2021, resulted in a warrant for her arrest. After her arrest, Retzlaff posted bond, and the judge ordered her to appear in court on November 23.

But here’s where things get weird in a way you would not expect, given Annie’s campground policies.

Retzlaff emailed the court requesting postponement based on her fear of exposure to COVID. According to Fox 11 News, her letter to the court cited the seriousness of COVID. “I fear for my life to be in an enclosed area with people in it that may have the contagion COVID.”

The courts refused her request, citing the many precautions the courthouse was taking. But Retzlaff fired off another angry email. She stated that if Sheriff Beiber authorized another warrant for her refusal to show, he must be covering up satanic pedophilia.

As one might expect, Retzlaff played hooky again on her court date, triggering another warrant for her arrest. Only this time, the court gave no option to post bond. Her $3,000 bond from earlier that year went to the state.

Ann Retzlaff Is Now Suing the Deputies Who Chased Her

Before we continue, do you need to step away and grab a seltzer? Maybe pat your forehead down with a cool cloth or treat your eyeballs to gentle eyedrops? Go ahead and get any refreshments you need. This next chapter makes our heads spin.

To briefly recap, Ann Retzlaff owns a campground called Annie’s Campground in Wisconsin. She banned all COVID precautions at her camp in 2020 but refused to go to court in 2021 for fear of COVID exposure. 

In a bizarre twist, Retzlaff filed federal lawsuits in May 2022 against two of the officers involved in the four-car police chase back in May 2021. Although everything started with Retzlaff running a red light, she says she did nothing wrong. The suits charge the deputies with 12 Federal crimes, including “Conspiracy for Cover-Up of Human Trafficking.” 

How does someone who declares themselves immune to American laws then file lawsuits against someone via Federal law? Granted, we make no claims to be law experts – far from it! We’re just trying to understand.

Retzlaff has also filed a common-law case against the judge and district attorney presiding over her case. A new judge from a different county has since been assigned to the case. A bench warrant remains active for Ann Retzlaff.

Ann Retzlaff, Stop Wasting Taxpayers’ Money

We certainly respect everyone’s right to their own opinions and rules for privately-owned companies. Freedom is something we all love as citizens of The United States of America. 

But for millions of humans to live together on land, things just flow better when we abide by specific laws. We think that running red lights is a bad idea, and we can’t blame the police for enforcing such laws.

Moreover, the chaos and cost to the State of Wisconsin in dealing with Retzlaff is a little unsettling. We wish she would just show up to court and drop her lawsuits. We’d love to see those resources directed into something positive instead. What do you think?

Discover the Best Free Camping Across the USA

To be honest with you, we hate paying for camping. There are so many free campsites in America (with complete privacy).

You should give it a try!

As a matter of fact, these free campsites are yours. Every time you pay federal taxes, you’re contributing to these lands.

Become a FREE CAMPING INSIDER and join the 100,000 campers who love to score the best site! 

We’ll send you the 50 Best Free Campsites in the USA (one per state). Access the list by submitting your email below: