The attorney for Green Bay Mayor Jim Schmitt entered a plea of not guilty during Wednesday morning’s initial appearance to three counts of violating state election finance laws.
Attorney Patrick Knight was in Brown County Court where a plea and sentencing hearing for December 5th at 9 a.m. was scheduled. This not guilty plea is a formality as it’s been publicly acknowledged that a plea deal has been reached in the case.
It was announced last month that the deal requires Schmitt to plead guilty to the 3 misdemeanor counts and give up over $26,000 in his campaign fund. Prosecutors will then not recommend any jail or probation time.
Schmitt was not required to appear at Wednesday’s hearing and did not. However, vocal long-time critic and Green Bay Alderman Guy Zima did show up. Afterward, Zima told the media that he’s disappointed Schmitt’s case won’t be resolved until at least December.
“One way or another there is a number of us that are going to seek justice, because it’s a mockery of the justice system really to take these serious charges and reduce them to misdemeanors,” said Zima.
- Find out why Zima and others want Schmitt to resign here
- Read more details inside the investigative report of Schmitt here
Schmitt told FOX 11 he would rather have had the case resolved Wednesday morning instead of waiting until December. Schmitt maintains he won’t resign and has declined to provide interviews on the campaign allegations until the case is resolved.