Skip to comments.Milwaukee citizens petition Walker to remove DA John Chisholm from office (WI)
Posted on 11/12/2015 3:52:38 PM PST by afraidfortherepublic
Chisholm is guilty of malfeasance, neglect of duty and official misconduct, a group of county taxpayers on Thursday filed a petition asking Gov. Scott Walker to begin the process of removing the DA from office.
Interestingly, the citizens are urging the Republican governor to employ a rarely used statute to dispose of the same Democratic district attorney who launched at least two secret and politically driven John Doe investigations into Walker.
âOur law in Wisconsin allows you to remove John Chisholm for cause. Cause includes malfeasance in office, neglect of duty or official misconduct. We have provided a dozen charges for your review,â states the petition signed by some of Chisholmâs harshest critics, including Craig Stingley, father of Corey Stingley, the 16-year-old who died after being restrained by customers in a West Allis convenience store. He had attempted to steal alcoholic beverages from the retailer. His death was ruled a homicide by the Milwaukee County medical examinerâs office.
Chisholm could not be reached for comment Thursday. His assistant said he was in a meeting. Chisholm has not returned dozens of calls from Watchdog seeking comment on myriad issues.
Milwaukee community organizer Tory Lowe, also one of the petition signers, on Thursday afternoon presented the governorâs office with two thick binders of charges. Simultaneously, city activists rallied at the Martin Luther statue near downtown Milwaukee. They called for Chisholmâs removal.
Walker was not in his office at the time the petition was delivered. His spokeswoman did not immediately return an email seeking comment.
RELATED: Was John Chisholm John Doe distracted?
A small crowd of about 30 protesters, mostly black residents, turned out on a blustery, overcast day to make their case against Milwaukee Countyâs top prosecutor.
On the front of the speakerâs podium, set up next to the statue of King, was an illustration of Chisholm behind bars. The same image could be found on bright orange t-shirts worn by eight members of the crowd.
Sherwin Hughes, one of the organizers, is a progressive talk radio personality in Milwaukee, host of The Forum on WNOV 860 AM. Hughes was among several speakers at the event calling for Chisholmâs removal.
âA governor can remove a district attorney when their behavior rises to a certain threshold and we believe that the district attorneyâs behavior has risen to that threshold, by failing to do his job adequately,â Hughes said. âHeâs failed to file charges in several cases when he should have, instead heâs used John Doe to go after his political rivals, including John Thomas, whose campaign for comptroller was derailed.â
Chisholm brought charges of bribery and misconduct in office against Thomas, a former Milwaukee County Board supervisor. A jury took just 90 minutes to find Thomas not guilty. Thomas also signed the petition.
Lowe told Wisconsin Watchdog he is among many Milwaukee citizens from all backgrounds â black, white, liberal, conservative â who are fed up with the way Chisholm has handled prosecutions in Milwaukee County.
Lowe called Chisholm a ârenegadeâ prosecutor, a âcowboy,â who has placed politics above justice.
âHe decides not to charge police officers for what the people feel is misconduct. He looks the other way on some of the toughest issues in the city,â Lowe said, referring to the Dontre Hamilton case. Chisholm announced late last year he would not bring charges against Milwaukee Police officer Christopher Manney, who shot Hamilton to death in April 2014 after Hamilton attacked him in the cityâs Red Arrow Park. Chisholmâs decision infuriated many members of the black community, who were further angered when the U.S. Justice Department of Justiceâs announcement this week announced it will not pursue charges against the police officer.
Chisholm also decided not to file charges against the three customers who restrained Corey Stingley.
And the Democrat led a multi-year secret probe into Wisconsin conservatives, including Walkerâs campaign. The second phase of that investigation has been declared unconstitutional by the state Supreme Court, which ordered the dragnet shut down.
The petition alleges Chisholm engaged in the politicization of the district attorneyâs office in pushing a John Doe investigation into Walkerâs former aides and associates when Walker was Milwaukee County executive. Chisholm continued to politicize the office during the expanded John Doe into Walkerâs gubernatorial campaign and 29 conservative organizations on widely debunked assertions of illegal coordination, the petition asserts.
Conservatives have sought, without success, an investigation into what an increasing body of evidence suggests was a politically driven investigation.
The petition is politically troubling, at least the optics are, for a governor who has mostly remained silent about the partisan DA who targeted his campaign.
But the state statute on the removal process states the governor must act. He may turn over the investigation to a commissioner or another agent, as Walkerâs predecessors have done in the successful removal of district attorneys.
The commissioner conducting the investigation, much like John Doe investigators, would be authorized to administer oaths and to issue subpoenas compelling witnesses to testify or produce evidence. No person may be excused from testifying under the removal law by reason that doing so may incriminate the witness, although witnesses would not be prosecuted for their testimony, with the exception of perjury.
âPresumably, the grant to immunity would extend to individuals currently under threat of prosecution for violating the John Doe proceeding secrecy orders,â the petition states.
Misconduct charges against Chisholm also include what the petitionersâ believe was the Milwaukee DAâs officeâs failure to prosecute police engaged in illegal strip searches dating back years before the story became public.
The petitioners allege Chisholm was negligent in his duties as he pursed costly political investigations at the expense of dealing with a wave of homicides. Milwaukeeâs homicide rate has soared nearly 80 percent from the previous year.
âYears of focusing major resources on political investigations has finally taken its toll on our community,â the petitioners assert. âDistrict Attorney Chisholmâs preoccupation with failed investigations and prosecutions of political actions has allowed the criminal element to prosper.â
Gov. Jim Doyle, a Democrat, initiated the process to remove Calumet County DA Ken Kratz from office after Kratz was embroiled in a sexual harassment scandal. Kratz eventually resigned.
Kratz sent a victim in a domestic violence case he was prosecuting unwanted sexually suggestive text messages.
Sam Hagedorn is a lifelong resident of Milwaukee and farther of Brian Hagedorn, Walkerâs former chief legal counsel whom the governor recently appointed to the Wisconsin appeals court. The elder Hagedorn attended Thursdayâs rally.
âThis issue of John Chisolm affects everybody. Iâm a conservative and I wanted to support holding him to the high standard we should hold him up to,â Sam Hagedorn said.
Lowe, who stresses he is no fan of Walker, said he is hopeful the governor will bring justice to Milwaukee County.
The petition states the same.
âWe are asking for this action in order to return the Milwaukee County District Attorneyâs office to its rightful role. John Chisholm has steered the office so far off course that law enforcement has taken a backseat to his political agendas.â
Part 282 of 280 in the series Wisconsin's Secret War
PETITION AGAINST CHISHOLM: Sherwin Hughes speaks Thursday afternoon at a rally calling for Gov. Scott Walker to launch an investigation into Milwaukee County District Attorney John Chisholm on misconduct charges.
Praise the Lord. Finally somebody is doing something about Chisholm, and it comes from an unexpected corner.
FReep Mail me if you want on, or off, this Wisconsin interest ping list.
Walker has shown real brilliance in using this basic technique of politics, as he did with the right-to-work law.
Weird isn’t it? It will be interesting to see how Walker responds.
Chisholm is clearly a Nazi B1tch with an overblown ego. Does the statute permit a punishment of these offenses including burning alive, at the stake, in public? I’m guessing that the jury or judge would not have that option, but this criminal needs to be removed from office and return the State of Wisconsin to it’s well deserved reputation as an exemplar of one of those places who value freedom and justice. Right now, their reputation is at risk.
At the least he should be tossed out of office,
A formal complaint to the State bar to have his
License yanked and then let him victims sue his ass
For violation of their civil rights.
Nifong his ass!
Not only that this ex army guy 1st lieutenant’s removal as DA, he should be Nifong’ed!
This is going to make Colleen cry!
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