I am currently an Assistant District Attorney in Sheboygan County, having held this position for almost 7 years. Throughout my time in Sheboygan, I have gained the necessary experience to fulfill the duties of the District Attorney. Each year as a prosecutor in Sheboygan I am responsible for around 600-800 cases myself. This is more than the number of criminal cases filed in Calumet County. In 2015, Calumet County had a total of 538 criminal cases filed, according to the Clerk of Courts. Compare that to the 699 criminal court cases I handled during this same year, according to the Sheboygan County DA’s Office Case List Summary.
I have successfully prosecuted all types of cases including homicides, sexual assaults, drug offenses, operating while intoxicated (OWI) offenses, domestic violence and many more. I am frequently in trials as a prosecutor, and I enjoy the fast pace environment. I am not afraid to put the extra effort into cases in order to achieve the just results.
I routinely provide guidance and advice to law enforcement officers about their investigations. Officers frequently contact me at all hours of the day, whether I am at work or not, to seek an answer to their questions. In addition, officers frequently seek me out to assist them with search warrants and subpoenas for records. I have a reputation for being a perfectionist in drafting these. From 2014 through May, 2016, I have authored a total of 187 search warrants and subpoenas for records.
Between 2012-2013, I was involved in complex litigation of an OWI issue. This issue surrounded a change in the expert testimony law in Wisconsin. The issue involved the use of field sobriety tests by officers during routine OWI investigations. With the assistance of the Wisconsin Department of Justice, Dr. Karl Citek, an optometrist from Oregon flew to Wisconsin for testimony on the issue. The defense utilized an expert from Georgia to support their position. After multiple days of testimony and briefing, we ultimately prevailed. The defendants were ultimately tried and convicted for their crimes. Upon appeal, I put forth the effort to settle this issue in Wisconsin for every county. Unfortunately, the defendants dismissed their appeal because of my efforts, preventing the Court of Appeals from deciding this issue of statewide importance. UPDATE: Just recently, during June 2016, I continue to my efforts to resolve this area of substantial litigation throughout the State. Myself and a colleague recently appealed a Sheboygan judges decision, which should hopefully address this complex issue of OWI litigation for the betterment of every law enforcement officer and every community in the State of Wisconsin.
In May 2014, I was nominated by a victim’s family for Outstanding Victim Advocacy, from the Wisconsin Victim/Witness Professional Association. The family surprised me with the recognition for my efforts in prosecuting Michael Lemarande in Sheboygan County Case 13CF42. Lemarande was convicted of Second Degree Reckless Homicide for stabbing the victim after a four day jury trial. He is currently in prison.
In October 2014, I presented at the annual Department of Justice sponsored OWI seminar in Elkhart Lake. My presentation involved how to effectively prosecute individuals who are impaired due to the consumption of drugs. I was asked to present by the State of Wisconsin Attorney General’s Office, upon a recommendation from the director of the Wisconsin State Laboratory of Hygiene. I continue to be a resource for many prosecutors on various OWI issues.
In May 2015, I was asked to present again, this time at Pediatric Training for Nurses. I presented to registered nurses who were in training for the SANE (Sexual Assault Nurse Exam) program. The SANE program is a nationwide protocol utilized by hospitals to treat and collect evidence from victims of sexual assaults. I was asked to present about trial testimony by the forensic nursing coordinator in Sheboygan.
In January 2016, I was again asked to present, this time to the Sheboygan Countywide Crime Stoppers organization. A member of the organization asked me to present on confidential informers.
I have enjoyed presenting on topics relating to prosecuting case. On each occasion, I have been asked to present by community members who have had professional contact with me and were impressed by my efforts.
As an Assistant District Attorney, I have also gained the respect and trust of almost every member in law enforcement from Sheboygan County. I take time to explain the law and the reasoning beyond the decisions that need to be made as a prosecutor. I am polite, courteous and friendly. Many officers have made me their “go to guy.” I have been known for my ability to communicate and counsel victims. I have also gained a reputation in Sheboygan as being aggressive and prepared.
My experience and reputation resulted in the leaders in law enforcement from Calumet County seeking me out for their District Attorney. I believe in developing a positive, open and effective relationship with law enforcement and the District Attorney’s office. Holding repeat offenders accountable will also be part of my mission as your District Attorney. I will ensure that victims and witnesses who cooperate with the criminal justice are treated with the utmost respect and dignity as they are the individuals most directly impacted by crime. With these goals in mind, I will strive to make Calumet County District Attorney’s respected as being efficient and effective in prosecutions.
A little more about my professional education…
Upon graduating high school, I went to UW-Oshkosh, from 2001 to 2005, where I received my Bachelor of Science Degree in Criminal Justice. At UWO I originally thought I wanted to become a police officer. During my coursework, I learned that I excelled in an understanding various legal concepts and how the law impacted police officers. I knew I had to pursue further education with law school.
While preparing for attending law school, I wanted to broaden my horizons and gain practical real-world experience. I decided to became a correctional officer for the State of Wisconsin in order to gain experience in the criminal justice field. I worked at Kettle Moraine Correctional Institution (KMCI), a medium security men’s prison, in Sheboygan County for one year. At KMCI, I worked with only one other officer, a sergeant, within the intake unit. This required me, and my sergeant, to supervise around 100 inmates in a large bunkhouse, without any bars or cells. I quickly learned how to communicate effectively and how handle stressful situations with a clear head.
I was admitted into Thomas Cooley Law School in Lansing, Michigan in 2007. After my first year of law school, I was able to transfer to Marquette University, where I completed my final two years of law school. At Marquette, I was hired as an intern at the Waukesha County District Attorney’s Office. I worked under the supervision of then District Attorney Brad Schimel, who is now Wisconsin’s Attorney General. I learned what it took to be an assistant district attorney as I learned the responsibilities of the practicing attorneys. Most importantly, I learned that prosecuting is what I love and, without a doubt, I was going to be a prosecutor for life.
After graduating from Marquette University Law School in May 2009, I continued to work at the Waukesha County District Attorney’s Office as a Special Prosecutor. I took on the responsibilities of full time assistant district attorneys. However, I worked for free. In August 2009, I was hired in Sheboygan County by District Attorney Joe DeCecco, where I continue to prosecute offenders.