Mandela Barnes
Press Release

Rep. Barnes Calls for AG Schimel to Investigate Walker Cover-Up of Systemic Abuses at State Facility

“Media reports have revealed that Governor Walker and his top aides knew about the serious allegations at Lincoln Hills for four whole years...”

By - Feb 22nd, 2016 12:45 pm

MADISON – WI State Rep. Mandela Barnes (D – Milwaukee) – ranking Democratic member on the Assembly Corrections Committee – today called on Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel to open an investigation into Governor Walker’s prolonged cover-up of documented abuses, alleged criminal activity, and systemic mismanagement at the state-operated Lincoln Hills School for Boys and Copper Lake School for Girls facility. He released the following statement regarding the request:

“For far too long, the safety and security of youth, staff, and other individuals in facilities like Lincoln Hills have been jeopardized by the mismanagement of Gov. Walker and policies set forth by his GOP counterparts in the state legislature.

“Media reports have revealed that Governor Walker and his top aides knew about the serious allegations at Lincoln Hills for four whole years, and the blatant attempt to cover up this knowledge of concerns at the facility actively put Wisconsin youth and workers in harm’s way.

“While Governor Walker is clearly trying to pass the buck with the resignation of his top aide within the Department of Corrections, his scapegoating does nothing to change the fact that dire red flags at Lincoln Hills were ignored for more than four years.

“Since Governor Walker has refused to accept responsibility for the failures at DOC and acknowledge the harms done to our youth and families, I call on our Attorney General Brad Schimel to immediately launch an investigation into Walker’s sustained efforts to keep these systemic abuses secret under his watch.

“Attorney General Schimel makes proud claims of combating crimes against children, providing closure and justice for victims of sexual assault, and preserving Wisconsin’s proud tradition of open government. Therefore, I call on AG Schimel to carry out his responsibility and enforce the laws meant to protect Wisconsin families, even if they are being perpetrated at the top levels of our state government.”

A copy of a letter from Rep. Barnes to Attorney General Schimel is attached to this release.

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