DA should follow Supreme Court orders


To the editor:

When COVID-19 first became a problem, I was unable to visit with my grandchildren. I had talked with them using Skype in the past but decided to try Zoom. Zoom is easy to set up and use. It is used by company employees, doctors, federal employees and many others to communicate during this pandemic. This apparently is not the case with District Attorney Greg Parker.

On March 22, the Wisconsin Supreme Court suspended all in-person proceedings in the circuit courts because of COVID-19 to protect the safety and security of the court system. Judges were ordered to implement video and telephone conferencing and the Supreme Court ordered that nobody could appear in person in the courtroom.

Over the course of the next few months, Judge William Kussel repeatedly tried to convince the DA that he must follow the Supreme Court order and appear remotely. Parker continually refused to download Zoom and work with Judge Kussel to follow the law.

The policy of the Wisconsin District Attorney’s Association has been to embrace this type of remote technology. Every other DA in the state is following the Supreme Court’s order. Parker has been unwilling to adapt and learn something new. He continued to violate the Supreme Court order for months by appearing for hearings in-person in the courtroom against the wishes of Judge Kussel.

Judge Kussel should be extremely frustrated with DA Parker’s willingness to blatantly ignore the Wisconsin Supreme Court and his court orders. As Shawano-Menominee County’s elected district attorney, his job is to enforce the law. He should not be above it.

Lynn Ackley, Shawano