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State lawmaker sends letter to Gov. Walker, calls for removal of Milwaukee County sheriff

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MILWAUKEE — A Democratic state lawmaker wants Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker to remove Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke from office, citing the deaths of four people at his jail last year and "repeated inappropriate" comments. But Governor Scott Walker, the one person who could boot Clarke from office isn't interested in taking action. 

Milwaukee Rep. David Crowley called for Clarke's removal in a letter Monday, January 23rd. Crowley is the fourth such lawmaker from Milwaukee to make such a statement. The others are Senator Chris Larson and Rep. Jonathan Brostoff and Christine Sinicki.

According to state law, Governor Walker is the only one, other than voters, with the power to remove Clarke.

David Crowley

David Crowley

"The behavior of the sheriff the last couple of months has been out of control. Constituents can recall him if they want to, but Wisconsin statutes state that the governor can remove the sheriff if he feels there is cause to. And there is cause!" Rep. Crowley said.

Last week, a Milwaukee resident claimed Clarke had deputies question him for 15 minutes because he shook his head at Clarke while boarding a plane -- during a flight from Dallas to Milwaukee. Clarke responded to the complaint by saying the next time someone does something similar "they may get knocked out."

Dan Black Snapchat video

Dan Black Snapchat video

After the incident at the airport, the Milwaukee Coalition against Trump demanded Clarke apologize -- criticizing Sheriff Clarke.

When asked for his response to the criticism, the below was posted to the Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office's Facebook page.

An attorney representing Dan Black released this statement:

I represent Dan Black, who is being harassed by Sheriff David Clarke. My statement is below.

Citizens should be able to complain about public officials without fear of retaliation. Sheriff Clarke's statements are coldly calculated to intimidate Mr. Black with physical violence for engaging in Constitutionally protected activity. Law enforcement simply do not have license to beat up citizens for whatever perceived slight. Mr. Black will preemptively stop Sheriff Clarke's attacks with the full force of the legal system. In addition to protecting Mr. Black’s rights, we will work to ensure that Mr. Black is safe from the dangers caused by Sheriff Clarke’s promotion of violence.

Best Regards,

William F. Sulton, Esq.

The jail deaths are under investigation.

Four deaths at Milwaukee County Jail in six months in 2016

Four deaths at Milwaukee County Jail in six months in 2016 -- Shade Swayzer's infant, Terrill Thomas, Michael Madden, Kristina Fiebrink


Clarke has gained a national profile as an outspoken supporter of President Donald Trump and has been mentioned as a possible candidate in his administration.

Over the weekend, Clarke on Twitter was critical of those who took part in the Women's March on Washington on Saturday, January 21st.

Sheriff Clarke on Twitter

"It`s time for him to feel the wrath of the people of Milwaukee County and be removed from office," Crowley said.

Walker says Clarke and elected officials are "ultimately accountable to the people."

Sheriff David Clarke addresses delegates during the evening session of the Republican National Convention at the Quicken Loans arena in Cleveland, Ohio on July 18, 2016. The Republican Party opened its national convention Monday, kicking off a four-day political jamboree that will anoint billionaire Donald Trump as the Republican presidential nominee. / AFP / DOMINICK REUTER

Sheriff David Clarke

"Any position, be it sheriff or any others, where they're elected by the people, they're ultimately accountable to the people and the only time historically a governor has gotten involved in any of those constitutional offices is if someone has clearly violated the law. It's really ultimately up to the people. When the people elect someone -- agree or disagree with everything they do or say -- I believe it should ultimately be left up to the people of that jurisdiction," Walker said.

According to the Wisconsin Legislative Council, Governor Walker has the authority to remove county officials for specific reasons: "The statutes also provide the Governor with authority to remove particular county officials for specific reasons. The Governor has statutory authority to remove the district attorney, sheriff, coroner, or register of deeds “for cause.” This means that the official may be removed for inefficiency, neglect of duty, official misconduct, or malfeasance in office."

FOX6 News reached out to the Milwaukee County Sheriff's Office for comment on Rep. Crowley's letter to the governor.

In a statement, a spokesman for Sheriff Clarke said: "Sheriff doesn't even know who that clown is."


  • Metal Maniac

    Clarke is absolutely correct when he says “freak show.” 95% of protests today involve little to no sustenance. They protest to tell people they will not let others get marginalized, then they go and marginalize trump voters or supporters. Remember the homeless Trump Supporter lady who got roughed up by libs? This is simply a group of people who have nothing better to do than make a big scene because they hate their own lives and want others to be miserable as well (can you say Reddit?)


    Dragging Sensei Coleman’s name into this to take political cheap shots is very disrespectful. He is one of the last people to promote any sort of violence or retaliation, especially over something as a differing viewpoint. If you are one of his students I hope you start paying more attention in class.


    Oh it was David Crowley the libtard, what a shock. He’s another clueless liberal that doesn’t care about the rise of crime and combating it with someone who knows what they are doing… guess Crowley would rather have another snowflake stoogie in office instead that he can manipulate and help spread the anti-white agenda. And as usual, FAUX6 shows their true colors by pandering to that liberal cry baby Crowley.


    Sure, and they’ll replace him with an SJW politician instead. Then once the problems grow exponentially they will go back and blame him for it anyway. If there’s anyone in this system I want to be a complete no BS hardass it’s law enforcement. Because while most of us get to sit behind our monitors playing tough guy, these people are in the streets taking care of the worst of the worse. Get Crowley on a few ride-alongs and see how a kinder gentler approach would work out for Milwaukee.

  • Julie

    Clarke is an asset to Milwaukee county. Replacing him is not only foolish but knee jerk liberal stupidity undermining the safety of the populous. The meltdown after the election seems to be seeping into WI liberal lawmakers. Move on snowflakes you lost.

  • Huh !

    Sheriff Clark (not being a psychic) had a man delayed after a strange encounter on an airplane…..not knowing this mans state of mind, Sheriff Clark acted on the side of caution. This is something I feel was reasonable in the present national Anti-Cop environment and the Anti-Clarke attitude by local officials !
    I happen to appreciate the man a lot more than the local politicians that supposedly represent us !!!

  • Hell in a Handbasket

    I noticed this article was posted by the Associated Press (Scott Bauer I assume since he’s their stooge who covers Wisconsin) and he has an ABSOLUTE AGENDA against Governor Walker and the state GOP. Did you tools at the AP like how Sean Spicer started his first press conference under President Trump by asking THE NEW YORK POST the first question rather than the AP that has previously been “Tradition”? Your liberal bias media days are going down the same road as the pay phone and S&H green stamps.

  • deletedagain

    There are so many other things for our law makers to take care of. This can be only be politically motivated.
    Go back to Madison and work on laws that deter crime, stop drunk drivers and increase the prison capacities for all of the criminals so you don’t have to release them early.

  • lynn

    Sherriff Clarke stepped up after waiting for PC and Mayor to ineffectively address the Sherman Park riot for a day or more. His word were well chosen and within 15 minutes, there was quiet in the situation.

  • Dighard

    Can Walker remove Barrett?
    That’s where you start.
    Then Ablie the 30.00 wheel tax man.
    These too crumbs should be first.
    I don’t think fart 6 news even asked anything y the 30.00 tax was needed.
    Like all liberals, hit the poor city folk, the people there so called for????????

  • Huh !

    Wait a second…..Clark was elected to the position of Sheriff, how can the Governor remove him without another election or at least a petition having a collection of 2/3rds the number of Milwaukee county registered voters !!!

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