'Sexting' victim sues Kratz - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

'Sexting' victim sues Kratz


By Capitol Bureau Chief Bob Schaper - bio | email | Twitter | Facebook

MADISON (WKOW) -- A Monona lawyer claims former Calumet County District Attorney Ken Kratz has a history of harassing women, dating back at least 10 years. And one new claim against Kratz involves sexual role playing.

All this comes on the same day that Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen shared details of the criminal investigation into Kratz's behavior - behavior that could lead to stalking, extortion, or public misconduct charges.

"The skies the limit," Van Hollen said. "Whether it be extortion or disorderly conduct or stalking."

Van Hollen says Kratz could also be facing charges of misconduct of office, depending on what investigators from the division of criminal investigation reveal. As to whether Kratz himself would be questioned, like he wasn't during the first round of investigations, Van Hollen suggested that decision could be out of his hands.

"Obviously, he's got the right not to be interviewed," Van Hollen said. "You can never force anybody to provide information to law enforcement, especially when they may be the subject of a criminal investigation."

Also today, in U.S. federal court in Milwaukee, Stephanie Van Groll's attorney filed a civil suit, saying Kratz denied his client's right to equal protection and due process of law.

Van Groll's attorney, Michael Fox, wasn't available for comment. But last week he said Kratz sent her 30 racy text messages strictly because of her gender.

"You can't use your public power to coerce someone into a relationship that they would not voluntarily choose to have on their own," he said.

The lawsuit also claims that Kratz has been harassing women for years, including once, at least 10 years ago, when he tried to seduce another domestic abuse victim. In that incident, the lawsuit claims, Kratz offered to hire a dominatrix from Chicago to "train the victim to be more submissive to his advances."

The lawsuit doesn't ask for a specific dollar amount, but Van Groll does request any and all damages for the harm she suffered - along with a declaration from the court that Kratz's behavior was unconstitutional.

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