PowerUp: Political retaliation in the Dane County Sheriff’s race?

Empower Wisconsin | Sept. 12, 2022

MADISON — Dane County Det. Anthony Hamilton has been placed on administrative leave — by his political opponent, Sheriff Kalvin Barrett. The discipline comes after Hamilton, a Republican, filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the sheriff, a Democrat, and released a photo of Barrett partying with a wanted pedophile.

Hamilton said he wasn’t surprised when he was escorted out of the Sheriff’s Department offices on Thursday.

“I expected it to happen sooner than it did because under Sheriff Barrett’s administration, retaliation is simply part of the culture,” the deputy told Empower Wisconsin’s M.D. Kittle on Friday’s edition of the Vicki McKenna Show. 

A spokeswoman for the sheriff said Hamilton was placed on a leave of absence for disseminating “confidential information.” But the department’s actions carry the stink of reprisal.

Hamilton’s lawsuit alleges Barrett and others in the department altered reports and conducted an illegal search at the Magnuson Hotel in Madison in march 2021. Hamilton requested an investigation into the search but Barrett never followed through, which is in violation of Department code, the Republican candidate said in a press release.

As Empower Wisconsin reported, Hamilton released Facebook photographs of Barrett with a convicted pedophile at a backyard fundraiser for the sheriff. The party occurred even as federal law enforcement agents and Barrett’s own deputies were searching for John Brown, 56, a felon convicted of 2nd-degree sexual assault of a juvenile, on warrants. Brown was wanted in part on charges he violated the state’s sex offender registry laws.

Gov. Tony Evers, who appointed Barrett Dane County Sheriff in April 2021, also was photographed with the convicted pedophile following his arrest by authorities. Brown was freed on a $250 signature bond.

Hamilton said his opponent is trying to silence him in the “Banana Republic of Dane County.”

“This is an appointed appointee by Gov. Tony Evers, who, as we all know, fanned the flames of the riots … in Kenosha,” the detective said.

Det. Anthony Hamilton is our guest today on this edition of PowerUp, Empower Wisconsin’s podcast.

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