RACINE- Citing jurisdictional issues, the Racine County District Attorney says she won’t pursue criminal charges against the Wisconsin Election’s Commission after the Sheriff’s Office accused them of breaking voting laws in the 2020 presidential election.
In a letter to Sheriff Christopher Schmaling Thursday, District Attorney Patricia Hanson said her office would not pursue charges because her office did not have clearance to prosecute elections commissioners.
Wisconsin Statute 978.05(1) states that criminal actions regarding election violations must be prosecuted by the prosecutorial unit, or county, where the alleged defendant resides. None of the WEC members live in Racine County.
“I am disappointed that my hands are tied by this jurisdiction issue,” Hanson wrote. “I have spent considerable time reviewing this case and what occurred in Racine County. It is appalling to me that an appointed, unelected group of volunteers, has enough authority to change how some of our most vulnerable citizens access voting.”
In October of 2021, Schmaling held a press conference where he outlined, what he believed, were several instances of voter fraud that occurred at the Ridgewood Care Center after the Elections Commission voted to eliminate the use of special voting deputies to help residents vote. The WEC at the time cited the pandemic, and the Care Center’s restriction of non-essential visitors, as the reason.
You can view the full statement by Hanson’s office below.