Democratic Party of Wisconsin
Press Release

AG Brad Schimel’s neglect and incompetence let rapists walk the streets for years

“For Schimel to drop the ball on his most basic responsibility is embarrassing and an insult to those who’ve bravely come forward seeking justice”

By - Feb 9th, 2018 01:18 pm
Brad Schimel. Photo from the State of Wisconsin.

Brad Schimel. Photo from the State of Wisconsin.

MADISON — Already 11 DNA matches have been made from the mountain of sexual assault evidence kits that piled up on Attorney General Brad Schimel’s watch. That points to 11 potential rapists, previously unknown to investigators, that may have dodged justice due to his incompetence.

Schimel’s neglect may have given potential predators the ability to reoffend in the years it has taken to test his backlog of 6,000 untested kits uncovered in 2014. Less than twenty percent of kits have been tested so far, as Schimel has made excuse after excuse despite multiple million-dollar grants he was given for the explicit purpose of ending the backlog

“To know that there are potential predators who have been free to prey on victims, possibly for years, when there could have been evidence here all along to keep Wisconsinites safe makes me absolutely furious,” said Martha Laning, chair of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin. “We are talking about real people — mostly women and many children — who have been denied justice and closure for decades. Imagine the trauma that Brad Schimel has been complicit in.”

Schimel was put on notice for his neglect nearly four years ago. Some kits dated back decades, leaving these survivors with little recourse for justice due to the statute of limitations. Thousands of these untested kits, about one-third, involve possible child victims.

“Brad Schimel should apologize individually to every survivor — the women, men and children who come forward to endure this invasive procedure only to have Schimel drop the ball on his most basic responsibility. Instead, all they have heard for years is silence and now a litany of excuses from Wisconsin’s negligent attorney general.”

In 2015, the Wisconsin Department of Justice received a $4 million grant to investigate and prosecute these cases. Since then, only a quarter of the 4,000 tests that were able to be scheduled for analysis have actually been tested. Brad Schimel has made a number of excuses for his continued neglect of the issue despite continued funding and support.

In contrast, Portland, Oregon received a sexual assault kit testing grant that same year, tested many of the kits and prosecutions are already underway.

“The man whose job is justice on our behalf has failed us, responding to survivors whose lives have been utterly shattered with excuses and neglect. Brad Schimel cannot be trusted to protect the people of Wisconsin.”

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2 thoughts on “AG Brad Schimel’s neglect and incompetence let rapists walk the streets for years”

  1. daniel golden says:

    Let me get this straight: Commercial DNA matching sites can turn around hundreds of thousands of DNA samples in 6 to 8 weeks and get results back to the customer , while making money at less than a hundred dollars a test. Meanwhile Brad Schimel is too busy determining what tasks the Koch brothers want performed currently to do his actual job, which is the be the chief law enforcement officer in the state of Wisconsin. He is an amazing combination of incompetence and corruption.

  2. Adam says:

    @ daniel golden

    You write “He is an amazing combination of incompetence and corruption.”

    Indeed. Removing Schimel from office this fall is nearly as important as dumping Walker. Let’s restore some balance and decency to our state government this fall.

    Dump Walker and Schimel and all corrupt corporate Republicans in 2018!

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