2010-10-19

WDAA's Response Concerning Allegations Against District Attorney Ken Kratz

 

W D A A

Wisconsin District Attorneys Association

P.O. Box 1702  Madison, WI 53701  www.wisconsindaa.com  wdaa_director@yahoo.com

September 17, 2010

District Attorney Kenneth Kratz

Calumet County Courthouse

206 Court Street

Chilton, Wisconsin 53014-1127

District Attorney Kratz:

The Wisconsin District Attorney’s Association is a voluntary organization

established to advocate on behalf of prosecutors throughout Wisconsin. While we

have no supervisory authority, we have the benefit of the collective and

institutional knowledge of our membership. Though we have no ability to

counsel or sanction others, those who look to us for guidance on criminal justice

matters should know that we are a responsible entity which has the objectivity and

wherewithal to engage issues as serious as those you have become involved in.

Your behavior involving a crime victim was repugnant and cannot be

countenanced. Crime victims have both statutory and constitutional protections

which are designed to protect them from systemic or bureaucratic abuses that may

unintentionally flow from our criminal justice system. Our statutes provide for

sanctions to be imposed upon any prosecutor or judge who does not zealously

guard victims rights.

Your behavior was neither unintentional nor innocent. As a cofounder of our

current victim rights system, and as a frequent lecturer on these topics, no

prosecutor could be expected to know these issues better.

When a crime victim exercised her statutory right to consult with the prosecutor,

you used that access to promote your own self interests. That alone was wrong,

however the goals you were pursuing were improper, disturbing, and repugnant.

You apparently took advantage of victim contact information, data collected to

aid and assist victims, to pursue an unwanted sexual liaison. In so doing, you

forced a crime victim to consider whether her unwillingness to consummate such

a liaison might translate into inaction on her criminal case.

Your behavior has cast aspersions on our entire profession. It has generated the

question of whether our crime victims, whose interests we serve, may now

hesitate when considering whether to share their personal information with us or

participate in our prosecutions. It is impossible to fathom how any crime victim in

your county could ever do so with your office in the future.

07/2010

Wi s c o n s i n D i s t r i c t A ons in Di ri At t o rne y s As s o c i a t i on (WDAA) Pa g e 2 of 2

P.O. Box 1702  Madison, WI 53701  www.wisconsindaa.com  wdaa_director@yahoo.com

Our entity does not have the capacity to sanction or discharge you. However, those of us who have

supervisory duties in our offices have no hesitation in declaring that any prosecutor in our own offices

would be discharged for this type of behavior. We ask you to reflect, objectively, on your conduct. We

hope that you will recognize that your behavior was inconsistent with the standards of our profession,

and that you will impose upon yourself the discipline that we would hope you would impose upon

anyone else who might do the same. Alternatively, we will ask Governor Doyle to review this matter

and evaluate whether your conduct meets the standard for removal from office.

By Unanimous Resolution of the Executive Committee of the Wisconsin

District Attorneys Association on September 17th, 2010.

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