Madison Democrat Representative Terese Berceau says the Office of Lawyer Regulation declined to properly investigate Calumet County District Attorney Kenneth Kratz for sending sexually suggestive text messages to a domestic violence victim.
Berceau is calling for an audit of the attorney discipline agency to get to the bottom of all the accusations. “I think there’s been a lot of finger pointing, but I think the one thing that everybody’s come down to is ‘why didn’t this office do more?’ And I think we do want to take a look at what they did do and what they do in general.”
Berceau stresses, the office has the duty to protect the public from abusive attorneys. She says taking action against Kratz seemed obvious because he admitted to sending the text messages.
But Berceau says it just looks like another profession that protects its own. “There wasn’t even really a slap on the wrist here; He was given advise to resign from the Victims Rights Board.”
Kratz has resigned as chairman of the Wisconsin Crime Victims Rights Board.
The prosecutor admitted to sending 30 highly inappropriate, sexually suggestive text messages to Stephanie Van Groll while he was prosecuting her ex-boyfriend for nearly strangling her to death.
Berceau also wants the Audit Committee to compare the rates of lawyer discipline in Wisconsin with other states. As for Kratz, Berceau says he should save everyone some grief and resign.
At last check, three other women have come forward claiming Mr. Kratz engaged in similar behavior with them.