Police Abuse

Milwaukee Sheriff David Clarke Whines About Being Harassed and Bullied After County Investigation Launched into His Harassment and Bullying of Citizen


According to Dan Black, in an official complaint filed with Milwaukee County, Wisconsin, he was harassed and bullied by County Sheriff David Clarke after a flight from Dallas to Milwaukee on January 15. Black, 24, lives in Milwaukee.

Milwaukee County Sheriff's Facebook

Black says that as he entered the plane, he saw Clarke but wasn't sure it was him, as he was wearing Dallas Cowboys gear and not his trademark cowboy hat. Black asked Clarke if he was indeed Clarke, and shook his head at Clarke when told the answer was yes.

Clarke asked Black if he had a problem with him, and Black again shook his head no and proceeded to his seat in back of the plane. Black claims the head-shake was not general disapproval of the controversial sheriff, but just surprise at his Cowboys fandom.

When he got off the plane in Milwaukee, "there were six uniformed deputies and two bomb/drug dogs standing there with Sheriff Clarke waiting for me to exit." He was taken to a waiting area and grilled by two deputies, Black says, about his reasons for being in Dallas and opinions about Clarke.

He was then "walked through the terminal, down through baggage claim, and all the way to my friend's car by the officers. I was not given the opportunity to use the bathroom, to stop for a coffee, or to browse the bookstore. It was clear to the deputies after their interrogation that I hadn't done anything (let alone done anything wrong), so I was confused as to why I needed to leave the airport directly."

Black says in this complaint that "Although the event did frighten me, I will not be intimidated into letting this egregious act go unreported. The deputies who interviewed me agreed, the stop was "stupid" and "ridiculous." There was absolutely no basis for this incident, and I believe I was the victim of the sheriff's abuse of power."

As reported by local ABC station WISN:

A spokeswoman for Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele said Wednesday that the complaint from Black had been referred to the county Audit Services Division, the primary function of which is to investigate matters of fraud, waste and abuse.

Abele told WISN 12 NEWS that auditors have interviewed Black and the deputies involved in the questioning.

"Public safety is not a game. It's not a toy just to use to intimidate people who scare you or bother you," Abele said.

The sheriff's department response yesterday, via its Facebook page, was to declare the investigation:

is nothing more than an attempt to harass and bully Sheriff Clarke. This is fake news. He remains undeterred and unfazed as he has been dealing with this for more than a decade. These fake news stories from the Sentinel Journal and their dweebs at the editorial board are so transparent that the casual observer can see this for what it really is.

Clarke further insists that the Abele has no legal authority to investigate or regulate anything about his actions. And besides, "Abele supported Mrs. Bill Clinton for president and Russ Feingold for US Senate."

There you go.

Now, what could be considered "fake" about the news? Is Clarke is asserting the investigation isn't happening? No, it is, and he's complaining about it. Is he asserting that what Black claims happened never happened?

No, he's not, and indeed the department's initial response when Black's complaint made news was to tweet the physical threat that:

Next time he or anyone else pulls this stunt on a plane they may get knocked out. The Sheriff said he does not have to wait for some goof to assault him. He reserves the reasonable right to pre-empt a possible assault.

He also posted on the department's official Facebook page the image above and to the right, picturing Black.

So, Clarke's response was some bullying and harassment, the exact things he accuses Abele's office of inflicting on him.

Sheriff Clarke is clearly not of the proper temperament or respect for citizen's rights to hold his office. May he get the stinkeye on every flight he takes.

Previous Reason reporting on the bad-tempered Sheriff Clarke.

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  1. The deputies who interviewed me agreed, the stop was “stupid” and “ridiculous.”

    Then why’d you do it?

    1. Thin blue line, motherfucker.

    2. HOW COULD THEY KNOW UNTIL THEY INVESTIGATED? Terry Stops can be carried out at any time so long as responding officers in accordance with internal policy have a reasonable suspicion that actor is acting in such a manner as to cause concern as to any action which may or may not have the purpose or intent to cause harm either real or imagined to any individual up to and including responding officers who are duly appointed law enforcement authority.

      1. I don’t have Terry -v- Ohio in front of me but I’m pretty sure the standard is something like articulate-able suspicion.

        “Why are you detaining me?”

        “Uh, dunno. This is dumb”, is license to walk away.

        1. Unless that conversation is recorded, that will change when the official report comes in when they’re reviewing officer-involved shooting.

        2. Fist’s articulation of the justification needed for a Terry stop is, I’m pretty sure, satirical (OTOH, if this had happened in Texas a Terry stop would have been justified under the little-known outside the state provisions regarding shaking your head at Cowboys regalia.) Beyond which, this wouldn’t be a Terry stop even if a Terry stop were justified.

          Fist knows this- my guess is he’s just enjoying channeling Whit/Dunphy. We won’t, however, know for sure until we find out how much he can Snatch.

          1. As always, I was completely above board.

  2. You know, this guy campaigns harder than anyone else for the sheriff position. I see billboards of him everywhere downtown come election season. I probably should’ve been tipped off he was trouble just based on the fact he seems obsessed with being sheriff to the point he nearly constantly wears a cowboy hat…

    Also, how can he get away with living in Wisconsin and being a Dallas Cowboys fan?? It’s like, state law that the Packers must be worshiped.

    1. Chris Christie is a Cowboys’ fan also. What is with thin-skinned ‘Law and Order”/Respect My Authoritayyh types and the Cowboys?

      1. Only thing I can think is that they watched WAY too many westerns. And now think westerns are modern day reality.

      2. When they watch westerns they see themselves? The north end of every southbound horse is like a mirror to these guys.

    2. Not only that but his wiki page says he was born in Milwaukee so its not like a childhood thing. Why the fuck is he a Cowgirls fan?

    3. How do you get away with the ‘cowboy-hatted law enforcement’ meme up in WI? Them’s all dairy farmers.

  3. Clarke may get into a whole heap of shit from this because now the whole state knows he’s a Cowboys fan.

    1. Someone should run against him with this as their sole platform plank.

      1. They’d win. It’s Wisconsin. It’s only a matter of time before Clarke is martyred for his infidelity.

    2. I was thinking that too… the Wisconsin voter will punish the wannabe cowboy, I wouldn’t be surprised if he woke up with a basket of cheese in his bed one day

  4. Get him the stinkeye? How about get him on a no fly list.

  5. Man, John Belushi really let himself go. Cowboy fan?!

  6. Sheriff John Clarke always hated me…

    1. For what?

      1. Everyone hates Pauldot.

  7. “Dweebs”
    Sounds like he hired circa 1980 Moon Unit Zappa to handle the department’s Facebook posts.

    1. +1 gagged with spoon

  8. Lol I know Wisconsinites. Pure cheese from balls to brains. This guy is playing a different game with an unknown agenda.

    1. Racist.

  9. Mrs. Bill Clinton.

    I laughed.

    1. Did you check if the handle is already taken?

  10. And it’s the Journal Sentinel, not the Sentinel Journal. That Facebook post seems exceedingly unprofessional.

    We the people are your bosses, Mr. Clarke. If you want to be a “public servant”, you need to be servile. When we tell you to jump, you ask “How high”.

      1. No, it is only racist if you tell him to step and fetch something.

  11. As far as I can see, the source of the problem are the Dallas Cowboys.

  12. “Sheriff Clarke is clearly not of the proper temperament or respect for citizen’s rights to hold his office.”

    Which makes him like 95% (possibly higher) of the sheriffs in this country.

  13. Next time he or anyone else pulls this stunt on a plane they may get knocked out. The Sheriff said he does not have to wait for some goof to assault him. He reserves the reasonable right to pre-empt a possible assault.

    Hmmm. Paranoia, with an expressed propensity for violence.

    Clearly, this is a man who should have no access to firearms or other lethal weapons. Should also be compelled (by force, if necessary) to submit to psychiatric observation and diagnosis.

  14. He reserves the reasonable right to pre-empt a possible assault.

    So he’s a prog psychopath who believes he can use violence against anyone who doesn’t submit to his will?

    He’s like an unintentional prefect example of the bad cop, who routinely abuses their authority creating victims out of those their sworn to protect.

    Seriously not sure what the citizens impacted will do, but he’s openly threatened every citizen.

    He belongs in jail. Second choice mental hospital he cannot leave. Third choice, fired, disgraced, social isolation.

    First choice, woodchipper.

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