The special prosecutor looking into an alleged physical confrontation between two state Supreme Court justices has decided no charges will be filed.
After reviewing the investigation conducted by the Dane County Sheriff’s Office, Sauk County District Attorney Patricia Barrett says she did not feel there was enough evidence to justify criminal charges. Barrett says she reviewed the case with an eye towards whether she could meet her ethical obligations as a prosecutor in filing charges, and did not feel she could do so.
The alleged incident took place in June in Justice Ann Walsh Bradley’s chambers, as several members of the court were debating the release of a controversial ruling on passage of Governor Scott Walker’s collective bargaining law. Walsh Bradley claimed Justice David Prosser put her in a chokehold during the heated discussion, while Prosser claimed he was defending himself.
In a statement, Justice Walsh Bradley says she never requested a criminal prosecution into the incident and always felt the issue was one of workplace safety. Walsh Bradley says she knew “that criminal charges alone would not have addressed our safety in the workplace and the special prosecutor’s decision not to file charges does not resolve the safety issue, either.”
Also in a statement, Justice Prosser says he was confident the truth would come out and he’s gratified the prosecutor found the charges were without merit. Prosser also put the blame on Walsh Bradley for her “decision to sensationalize an incident that occurred at the Supreme Court.”