Man prosecutors say admitted to trying to ‘destroy’ Judge Dallet’s career ruled in contempt of court

Rebecca Dallet, Joseph Wilke

ST. FRANCIS — A St. Francis man accused of working to ruin the career of one of Wisconsin’s top judges after she ruled against him was ruled in contempt of court on Thursday, April 4.

Joseph Wilke, 56, faces a felony count of misappropriating ID info — harm reputation and three misdemeanor counts of defamation.

He was in court Thursday for a return of a doctor’s report evaluating his competency, and the doctor recommended an in-patient competency assessment. Online court records showed Wilke challenged the report and “continually became irate.” He was admonished and warned that he would be held in contempt if he continued to swear and be disrespectful. The online court records said Wilke swatted an attorney’s hand, and was ordered in contempt. The court ordered he serve one day in custody, and a competency hearing was set for April 9.

According to court documents, Dallet, elected to the Supreme Court of Wisconsin in 2018, oversaw a civil case involving Wilke.

Prosecutors in November 2017 learned of “harassing emails” and “profane and defamatory comments” regarding Dallet posted on various websites and blogs. Additionally, prosecutors said Wilke used Dallet’s campaign letterhead without consent, and had written false and defamatory statements on her campaign stationary — distributing it to others.

Investigators spoke with a woman who runs the Wisconsin Justice Initiative. She indicated in mid-November 2017, she received an email from Wilke titled “Judge…is corrupt scum,” with Dallet’s letterhead attached, reading:

“I’m running away from my pathetic and embarrassing record at the Milwaukee Circuit Court. I believe I can continue to cheat honest people and garner even bigger bribes, fix important cases, and keep on ruling against the poor. HA! The poor! Who gives a (expletive) about them; if they had any money, they wouldn’t be poor. Help me keep them where they belong…away from the court!

I was also voted the HARSHEST judge in Wisconsin. I was removed from criminal court for obtuse behavior and rulings, and then hidden in civil court. The bribes are much better and the poor cannot fight back. Easy. Money.”

The complaint said Wilke in May 2017 sent an email to faculty and staff at Marquette University Law School titled, “Remove…from faculty immediately.” Prosecutors said Wilke accused Dallet of “shaking down litigants in her court for bribe checks,” and using her position “to cheat the disabled in order to solicit bribes.”

He was interviewed by detectives in June 2017. In one of the postings, prosecutors said Wilke said he would “destroy” Dallet, and he was asked what he meant by that. Prosecutors said he indicated he wanted to destroy her opportunity to be a judge, but said he didn’t have any proof about his accusation of bribery against her.

The complaint said in August 2017, Wilke posted vile and defamatory comments regarding Dallet on the Facebook page of her opponent, who refused to take the posts down.

Prosecutors said the IP address assigned to Wilke was the address used in the misappropriation of identifying documents of Dallet.

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