Fourth Kratz victim was set to testify - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Fourth Kratz victim was set to testify


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

MADISON (WKOW) -- An unnamed woman agreed to testify against former Calumet County District Attorney Ken Kratz, becoming the fourth person to accuse Kratz of inappropriate sexual behavior.

The woman - named only as "Confidential Informant"  appears on a witness list prepared by Tom Storm, an assistant attorney general. Storm provided the list ahead of a special hearing initiated by Gov. Jim Doyle to remove Kratz from office.

In the witness list, Storm says the woman would testify about her experience from 1999 when she was the victim in a domestic abuse incident prosecuted by Kratz against her husband. Storm said she would further testify that Kratz had a "sexual encounter" with her at her home, along with sexual conversations with her by phone and e-mail. 

Department of Justice Spokesman Bill Cosh says the department had no knowledge of the fourth woman before September, and that she had not filed a complaint at the time of the alleged incidents.

In September, Michael Fox, attorney for Kratz accuser Stephanie Van Groll, told 27 News of a  fourth victim whom, he said, suffered similar harassment from Kratz more than 10 years ago.

"Sexually suggestive discussions, messages, it involved at least one visit, I won't go beyond that at this point, a visit to her home," Fox said.

Although Van Groll has sued Kratz in federal court, Fox said the fourth woman was not able to sue because the statute of limitations on her case had expired.

Shannon Barry, an expert on domestic abuse, says behaviors like the ones Kratz is accused of tend to happen over many years.

"A person is going to use the behavior as long as it works," she said. "And that's why it's really imperative that systems like the criminal justice system and in this case the office of lawyer regulation hold someone accountable for those behaviors."

Victim number four never testified against Kratz because he resigned before the removal hearing was held. But Barry says even volunteering to do so takes courage.

"I really commend these four women for speaking out about it and coming forward," she said. "But the likelihood is that there are probably a lot of other women that we may never hear from."


27 News Continuing Coverage:

Kratz case shows changes to lawyer oversight needed, officials and victims advocates say (October 4, 2010)

Calumet County D.A. Ken Kratz resigns (October 4, 2010)

Crime Victims Rights Board questions Kratz's veracity (September 29, 2010)

27 NEWS EXCLUSIVE: Live interview with A.G. J.B. Van Hollen on Kratz case (September 21, 2010)

Third victim hopes District Attorney will step down (September 21, 2010)

Kratz scandal could have 'chilling effect' on all domestic violence victims (September 21, 2010)

Fallout continues over 'sexting D.A.', officials point fingers (September 21, 2010)

Third woman accuses Kratz (September 21, 2010)

Gov. Doyle calls D.A.'s actions "a terrible violation of trust" (September 21, 2010)

Kratz's lawyer says allegations "driven by financial opportunity" (September 22, 2010)

Gov. Doyle receives verified complaint against D.A. Ken Kratz (September 22, 2010)

Assembly chair says he'll review Kratz matter (September 22, 2010)

Top DOJ prosecutor Kratz political supporter (September 22, 2010)

Domestic abuse influences women to ask Gov. to remove D.A. (September 22, 2010)

Criminal prosecution of Kratz still possible (September 23, 2010)

Kratz's other authority: Chair of Crime Victims Rights Board (September 23, 2010)

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