From our readersIssue Date: March 21, 2013
I need to apologize to my family, friends and the residents of Marinette County for not voicing my concerns sooner. This judicial election is important to myself and my family even though I am not a candidate. Jim Morrison and I were the two applicants that sought the judicial appointment when Judge Duket retired last year. Governor Walker appointed Jim Morrison to fill this position. I do not believe this election should be decided on who has lived here longer. The job qualifications should be based on the candidates legal experience and knowledge and the integrity they will bring to the office.
Recently I have read numerous letters to the editor and viewed citizen testimonials on You-Tube via the internet that praise Allen Brey for prosecuting tough crimes and protecting the citizens of Marinette County. I agree that Allen Brey has successfully prosecuted many cases for the victims of crime in our County. Unfortunately, this is not the only qualification that voters should consider when selecting our next circuit court judge. A circuit court judge should not be the prosecutor in chief. Our citizens should be afforded the opportunity to address any disputes or wrongdoings by fair and impartial judges. If not, we should eliminate the judicial portion and allow the prosecutor to determine the fate of all criminal offenders.
I was a Marinette County Deputy Sheriff for 11 years. I believe the most important quality for our judges should be honesty, fairness and integrity. I have worked with both judicial candidates during my 25-year career as a lawyer. I have no reason to question the honesty, fairness or integrity of Jim Morrison. Unfortunately, I cannot say the same for Allen Brey. I invite you to do a Google Search on the internet; type in Allen Brey and read the first article, Court Disciplinary Proceeding Against Brey (171 Wis.2d 65, 490 N.W.2nd 15 1992). At that time Al Brey was the elected District Attorney for Taylor County. I dont fault Allen Brey for his overzealous actions as a young prosecutor. My problem is that he lied to the Circuit Court Judge and then he lied 3 more times to the Board of Professional Responsibility during the disciplinary investigation. Allen Brey only confessed when he knew he was caught. The Supreme Court suspended Allen Breys license to practice law for 60 days and he lost his job as district attorney.
Recently a local attorney attempted to get this message out to the voters of Marinette County when he learned that Allen Brey was considering running in this judicial election. Allen Brey paid that attorney a personal visit and tried to use his authority as a prosecutor to chill the attorneys efforts by informing him of the grave consequences of his actions. If you read the Supreme Court Disciplinary case you will see that Allen Brey has not learned from his past misconduct but instead continues to abuse his authority as a prosecutor.
Not every person who reads this article will personally know me or care. For those that do and trust my judgment, I encourage you to support and vote for Jim Morrison on April 2 so that we can continue our tradition of electing honest, fair and impartial judges. Please take the time to read the Wisconsin Supreme Court disciplinary action of Allen Breyif you do not have access to the internet or the library, you can call my Marinette law office, leave your name and address and I will personally mail you a copy of the article before you cast your critical vote in this judicial election.
Attorney Mike Perry,
Re: Brey for Judge
I address this letter to the voters of Marinette County. On April 2 is an election that will probably not get a high percentage of voter turnout. These mid-term elections dont draw a lot of interest because we sometimes think of them as not very important.
I, as a registered voter in this county, have served on jury duty and we all can and possibly will need to serve in that capacity at one time or another. Its a part of being a citizen and that is important.
There is a circuit court judge position to be decided in the April election. I guess we all feel like we want a fair and impartial, intelligent and sensible person sitting on the bench when it is our turn in court.
I retired two years ago from Marinette County Sheriffs Department after serving for 18 years. I am now a Certified National Rifle Association training instructor and have been teaching basic pistol courses to help people get certified for Wisconsins Concealed Carry Licenses.
When I started these classes Wisconsins laws were just being instituted and I needed lots of clarification to teach the subjects correctly. After trying to get information from the State of Wisconsin without much luck, I was able to talk with the District Attorney for Marinette County, Allen Brey. He not only offered to clarify questions for these classes but offered to attend them to teach the legal aspects of Concealed Carry, and with no pay.
As I am an avid gun enthusiast and hunter, and given the current political climate across the country regarding Second Amendment constitutional gun rights, I find it refreshing to have someone this qualified to sit on the judges bench.
Allen Brey was a United States Marine Corps Sergeant and he swore the same oath the rest of us in in the U.S. military did to uphold and defend the Constitution of the United States of America against all enemies, both foreign and domestic. A family man, he is active in this community and has strongly defended all of us against crime as a long time district attorney and he has earned our trust.
So when Tuesday, April 2 comes along, go to the polls and cast your ballot for Allen Brey, Circuit Court Judge for Marinette County.
William S. Hamer,
Heroin has been found a home in Marinette County. This is the instrument of a fearless breed of criminals that is invading our county, our city, our neighborhood. Judge Morrison, in his first year on the bench, has handed down sentences that are the maximum allowable given the charges presented to him. District Attorney Allen Brey needs to take a tougher stance and not accept the plea bargains brought before him by defense attorneys for the offenders. It involves less work but at what cost to the safety of our communities.
We want a secure environment for our children and grandchildren. The way to do that is to keep the drug dealers and the users who are stealing to pay for their fix off our streets. Judge Morrison has and will continue to order the stiffest sentences the law allows.
Judge Morrisons court record as reported in this newspaper is proof that he is and will continue to be tough on drug related crimes. I am asking you to support Judge Morrison by voting for him on April 2. Thank you.
Continued on A-5
Letter to the Editor:
While I respect both candidates for County Judge, I am writing to express my support of Allen Brey in the upcoming judicial election. Over the past several years I have had occasion to practice law against him and, while he has been an adversary, I can say he was aggressive in pursuit of protecting the public in criminal matters. Allen has exhibited high integrity and has been a man of his word. I consider him a worthy and respected opponent who would serve the citizens of Marinette County well as a Circuit Court Judge.
Attorney Howard J. Eslien,
Letter to the Editor:
Re: Brey Is a Flawed Candidate
There is an upcoming election for Marinette County Circuit Judge. I see signs in yards that I am sure are there because of the perceived political party of one candidate or the other. This election is not about who is the red or blue candidate. It is about a non-partisan election that will have serious consequences for the next 6 years. I do not take joy, but I do take some professional risk, in writing this letter.
As a practicing attorney, I have frequently observed both candidates in their professional environments. There is no comparison. Judge Jim Morrison is a firm, fair and honest judge. Just as importantly, Judge Morrison believes (as all judges must) that telling the truth is the very foundation of our legal system. The same cannot apparently be said for Judge Morrisons challenger. In my opinion, Allen Brey is a seriously flawed candidate whose history makes him unqualified to be a judge.
Most of you probably dont know, and Mr. Brey isnt going to tell you, that when he was the District Attorney for Taylor County, Wisconsin, he had his law license suspended by the Wisconsin Supreme Court for 60 days for professional misconduct. The reasons for his suspension included:
Abusing his authority as a prosecutor
Having direct communications with someone whom Mr. Brey knew was represented by a lawyer without that lawyers knowledge or consent
Making a false statement to the court by denying this fact
Then falsely denying his actions in 3 separate letters to the Board of Attorneys Professional Responsibility.
Neither the passage of time nor Mr. Breys subsequent career washes away his transgression because it directly relates to the position he is seeking. A complete written decision on Mr. Breys suspension may be found with the following internet search: Disciplinary Proceedings Against Brey. It can also be found in the following court reporters: 171 Wis. 2d 65, 490 N.W.2d 15. The decision is only a few pages and should be read by every person who plans on voting in this election. I urge you to preserve the integrity of the court and keep Judge Morrison on the bench.
Attorney Richard Boren,
I have known Allen Brey for almost 20 years. I met him while he was serving on the Marinette City Planning Commission. Allen has lived in Marinette and has served Marinette County in the District Attorneys office for 20 years, four of these years have been as District Attorney.
I dont believe the race for Circuit Court Judge should be based on the candidate being a Republican or Democrat, conservative or liberal. The candidate should be judged on their qualifications, experience and integrity. Allen Brey has all these qualities and is the best candidate for the job.
Please support Allen Brey for Circuit Court Judge on April 2.
Marinette County is fortunate to have two fine, upstanding men running for Circuit Judge. I have practiced law in this area since 1971 and I feel that the community would best be served by retaining Jim Morrison as Judge.
Jim Morrison will bring a broad, common sense perspective to the bench. He has represented many clients and has dealt with many different legal issues over the years. I have conducted a number of lawsuit mediations where Morrison represented one of the parties and always found that he was honest and well prepared. He will bring those qualities to the bench.
Attorney at Law
Allen Brey has the Experience to be Marinette County Circuit Judge.
I recently retired from Law Enforcement after serving 31 years as an Officer, 25 of which were in Marinette County. For 20 years I have worked with Allen Brey on many cases, both as the Assistant District Attorney and the District Attorney. The last 11 years, I was actively working in the drug unit and that is where Allen Brey and I worked closely.
During this time, I wrote many search warrants and Allen Brey always assisted me with this. Two of the cases went to the Wisconsin Supreme Court and we won both cases. Our conviction rate for all drug related cases was about 99%.
Allen Brey feels that illegal drugs are a huge problem in Marinette County and he is very strict on the drug cases that go to court. Heroin, Prescription Drugs, and Marijuana Cultivation remain a much higher problem now as compared to the drug problem years ago.
Allen Brey takes a firm stand on Drug Trafficking and I feel that Allen Brey is well qualified to be the next elected Judge in Marinette County. So on April 2nd join me in voting for Allen Brey for our next Marinette County Branch II Circuit Judge.
We are writing to support our friend Judge Jim Morrison as he seeks a full term as Marinette County Circuit Judge. We have worked with Jim for years and have developed tremendous respect for his work, compassion, judgment and character.
Over the years, Jim has demonstrated great dedication to serving northeastern Wisconsin in a variety of capacities. Jims counsel and advice to many families and organizations has been invaluable to guiding people through difficult situations. In addition, Judge Morrison and his family have been active and instrumental to numerous educational and community focused organizations.
As a Marinette County Judge, Jim Morrison has demonstrated that he understands the need to keep dangerous criminals off the streets and provide law abiding residents with safe neighborhoods.
We have known Jim and worked with him for more than 25 years. Jims judicial values, ethics and integrity will continue to serve Marinette County families exceptionally well and we are proud to support him in his election.
John Gard and Cate Zeuske
Letter to Editor:
RE: Town of Stephenson Issues
There were at least two letters to the editor in the past month or so concerning the Towns Public Works Department. One pointed out the reason the town roads are in such poor shape after snow is because the town has so many roads and not enough equipment or manpower to do any better than what is being done.
The writer of that letter, a member of the Town Board and also chairman of the Town of Stephenson Road Committee, offered two solutions. Hire more workers and add more trucks or dont expect to have the town roads plowed as good as the county does the county roads.
I cannot accept either of those as viable solutions!
As chairman of the Road Committee, wouldnt it be prudent to have a comprehensive study done (in house, no need to hire a consulting firm) to determine, among other things, the following:
1. Does the town have the equipment best suited for the work?
2. Have all of the workers been trained in the operation of the equipment to ensure we are getting the most out of what the equipment is designed to do?
3. Has there been a time study done on how much work should be accomplished for every hour worked. Ie, miles of road plowed per hour?
4. Scheduling of the workers to get maximum results. i.e., flexible scheduling to have the trucks on the road when they can do the most good?
5. Are they giving priority to the most frequently used roads?
6. Would it be better to have a road crew supervisor that is not unionized? (having a member of the unionized road crew supervise that crew is not unlike having an inmate being appointed to be the prison warden)
Another letter from a town citizen stated a position similar to mine as it relates to hiring another full-time employee. That should not even be considered as an option. If a study of some of the items I have listed shows that we have a road crew that is operating at the peak of performance, perhaps then we need to look at part-time workers. The writer also states that with the full-time employees being represented by a union, the town needs to negotiate with them, not let them dictate what the town can or cannot do. I also agree that our town crew should be used in the summer to do busy work that will help to improve the town roads.
Example, has anyone else seen the large pile of sand/salt mixture stored at the town hall ready for winter and come spring the pile is gone and wondered where is all that sand now that spring is here? Well, just take a look at all the places where the shoulders of the road are now higher than the road surface and all the ditches that are now barely visible, that is where the sand is now.
How about grading off those high shoulders and excavating those ditches so that the winter melt can run off the road before refreezing and causing the road surface to crack and buckle? How about some cutting of the brush from the ditches and cutting down of dead limbs and trees that are bound to come down from the weight of winter snow and ice?
Maybe instead of sending a truck and driver out in the summer to throw a shovel of hot mix into a pot hole, we do it right and do a clean out of the pot hole and surrounding area. Again, a non biased supervisor would be able to ensure that these jobs are being properly handled.
There is an election in a week or so where we get a chance to vote for two town supervisors. Hopefully we can all get out and vote and ensure that the best person for the job is elected.
I myself will not be voting for Mr. Pentico, who says he is for ensuring that all the towns citizens get representation that they deserve. I can only say I dont think he had all the towns citizens and businesses in mind when he argued against allowing golf carts and ATVs on some of the town roads, even stating that people were going to be getting hurt and killed if this was allowed. Reminds me of someone that sat on a town or village board in the early 1900s and argued against letting those horseless carriages use the roads.
I also dont want someone representing me on the town board that thinks nothing of driving down the road and displaying improper gestures to anyone that he does not like, even young kids.
Bill Roebke, Resident,
Town of Stephenson
Letter to the Editor:
During my 30+ years of law enforcement, I had the pleasure of working closely with numerous District Attorneys, both Assistant and Elected, not only in Marinette County but in other counties and states. I found all of these Attorneys to be very dedicated and hardworking regarding their overwhelming case loads. There was a protocol that these attorneys followed. They would progress in their career as Attorneys, Assistant District Attorneys and then Elected District Attorneys. Then, after years of experience, they would seek the position of Judge. These steps were very important as it prepared the Attorney to be the very best in understanding all aspects of what the position of Judge needed to be.
Allen Brey is sincerely seeking the position of Marinette County Circuit Court Judge in the Tuesday, April 2 election. Allen Brey is currently your Marinette County District Attorney who was overwhelmingly elected by Marinette County voters and earned this position in 2008. Allen is dedicated, hardworking and would genuinely be qualified as Judge. Allen has faced some very serious and tough crime cases as a prosecutor and has successfully approached each and every case due to his previous and ongoing experience.
I support Allen Brey 100%. He is the right choice for your Marinette County Circuit Court Judge. Now, Marinette County voters, you are the jury. Allen Brey is the only candidate that has followed protocol and comes before you with 25 plus years of experience. These years are unmatched by any other candidate. Allen Brey has no doubt earned the position to be your Marinette County Circuit Court Judge and deserves your vote, Tuesday, April 2, 2013.
Craig C. Bates,
Retired Deputy Sheriff
of Marinette County
To the Editor:
There are elections that dont attract much attention. A few committed people turn out for them. It seems only a scattering of people believe that in a democratic republic all voting opportunities are important and vital to preserving freedom of participation in government choices.
The April 2nd election could not be more important to people who believe that laws should reflect the will of the people. Too often laws are passed by majorities and then blocked by activist judges who use their personal ideologies to legislate from the bench.
A judge is to judge according to the law, and we have the opportunity to keep two judges on the bench who have fine records. In Marinette County, Judge Morrison was appointed by the governor and has shown for a year, a fine record of conservative steady judgment. He is facing an opponent with no judicial experience and whose only other legal experience is with prosecution.
Morrison, through his wide background as a lawyer, is experienced with all the types of cases that would come before him as a circuit court judge.
For the Wisconsin Supreme Court, Judge Pat Roggensack has had years of conservative judicial experience on the Wisconsin Supreme Court. Her opponent has never been a judge. Do we really want to put someone on our state supreme court with no judicial experience?
We cant afford to lose these fine judges. Please vote your support on April 2nd.
Clifford and Lila Teachout,
As I am sending in my yearly payment, I am taking the time to make a comment about Allen Brey, our D.A.
Over several years now, Allen has taken the time to show up at our Town of Pound monthly meetings. The first time he was there I asked him why he was there. He said he just wanted to make sure he knew what was taking place in the area.
Over time I have called him on questions about laws, got my answers and what he would do.
I have never written a letter about anyone before but feel he would do a great job as Judge.
John B. Gaffney,
Town of Pound Supervisor
To the Editor:
I am writing on behalf of my friend and colleague, Judge James Morrison, who is running for election to the Marinette County Circuit Court, Branch 2.
I have known Judge Morrison for over 10 years. We served on the Wisconsin Board of Bar Examiners together and have become friends. Like Judge Morrison, I was in private practice, primarily practicing civil law before becoming a circuit court judge.
There is a significant different between being a lawyer and a judge. A lawyer, while offering advice and counsel to individuals, also acts as an advocate. In contested matters, the lawyer may take one side in a two- or multi-sided dispute.
A judge is more akin to a referee, making sure that rules are followed and that parties are treated fairly. Personal opinions and personal philosophies cannot be a factor in reaching a decision. The judicial standard requires a judge to be fair, objective and to treat the litigants and counsel respectfully with strict adherence to the law.
Judge Morrison has those qualities and has demonstrated for the past year that he is an outstanding member of the judiciary.
It has been noted by some that Judge Morrison, prior to becoming a judge, was not engaged on a regular basis in the practice of criminal law. Background in criminal law is not necessary to being a good jurist. Most cases heard before the judiciary are noncriminal in nature. The vast majority of the public comes in contact with the legal system because of divorces, property-line disputes, personal injury matters, juvenile cases, probate and traffic. This is not to suggest that criminal cases are not serious, nor that they do not require a judge to be fair and impartial. Rather, an experienced lawyer who becomes a judge will be able, in any area of law, to apply the rules, the law, and factors necessary to reach a fair and just decision. Judge Morrison has for the past year sat on and presided over a number of criminal cases. He has demonstrated his ability to be fair both to the State and to the defendants and the victims of the crimes that appear before him.
Marinette County is fortunate. Judge Morrison had a long career in private practice where he was successful and respected by his clients and the public as a whole. He has served Marinette County for almost a year as a circuit court judge and demonstrated the temperament and the intelligence and the knowledge that is required by a jurist. I urge the citizens of Marinette County to elect Judge Morrison to a full term.
Very truly yours,
Charles H. Constantine,
Circuit Court, Branch 7
To the Editor:
I am here asking the citizens of Marinette County to vote for Allen Brey on April 2 for Circuit Court Judge. I spent almost 22 years with the Marinette County Sheriff Department until I retired a little over a year ago. The past 10 years I was the court officer. I spent every day working closely with the Judges and District Attorney. I worked with Allen Brey on thousands of criminal cases during that period.
I have recently read in our local papers requests to vote for Allens opponent. I keep hearing how he is a nice guy, good neighbor, fatherly figure on the bench and a good family man. While these are qualities for every man to have, I am looking for qualifications from my judge. Having spent most of his adult life prosecuting criminals, over half of that time as Assistant D.A. and now District Attorney, Allen Brey has prosecuted thousands of criminal cases while looking out for victims of crimes in Marinette County, which more than qualifies him for Judge.
Ask yourselves, if a drunk driver kills a family member of mine, if my home is burglarized, one of my children or grandchildren is sexually assaulted or murdered, do I want a nice guy, good neighbor and father figure passing sentence on these criminals or do I want a man who has prosecuted these types of cases most of his adult life? I think the answer is clear. Vote for Allen Brey on April 2.
Letter to the Editor:
I am writing to encourage support for our incumbent Circuit Court Judge, the Honorable James Morrison.
In 2012, I was a victim in two movable property theft cases that came before Judge Morrisons court. As a victim, it is my constitutional right to be treated with fairness, dignity and respect. This never happened during my six month ordeal. Several letters to the editor have been written describing a quiet, humble and calm Allen Brey. I personally experienced the polar opposite.
After numerous failed attempts to contact Mr. Brey to inquire about the status of my cases, I gave up. Again, it is the victims constitutional right to have the opportunity to confer with the prosecution. Obviously, Wisconsins Victims Rights Laws were ignored in my cases.
I was very appreciative of the efforts made by Mary Falkenberg, the Victim/Witness Coordinator, who reached out during my frustration. Without her compassion and support, I would have been completely isolated from the court proceedings.
During this process, I received trustworthy information regarding one of my stolen family heirlooms that was being sold by a local jeweler. I immediately contacted Mr. Brey to speak to him, and again, nothing. I asked Ms. Falkenberg to forward my lead to the investigating police officer in hopes of recovering at least one of my many stolen heirlooms. And again, silence. I took matters into my own hands by hiring an attorney; within weeks, my attorney recovered the heirloom as a result of this tip.
When the sentencing date arrived, I was never introduced to Mr. Brey nor recognized him. He never acknowledged my presence until Judge Morrison asked if the victim had any statement to present to the court.
After addressing the court and to my amazement, I was victimized again by Mr. Breys demeaning and angry conduct. He even had the audacity to announce in the courtroom, I am the best attorney in the USA.
I encourage all Marinette County Voters to visit the following website for another perspective on Mr. Brey:
Trisha D. Lemery
Letter to Editor:
Re: Allen Brey for Circuit Judge
Ten years ago tragedy struck our family. Our daughter was murdered and a suspect was in jail.
During the next few weeks there were hearings before charges could be filed and trial dates could be set. Allen Brey, then Assistant D.A., was assigned the case after three hearings.
During the three months it took to file charges and set a court date, Allen met with our entire family many times to keep us updated as to what and why things were being done.
When a court date and final charges were to be filed, Allen again met with our entire family to explain the three options he had. He explained the pros and cons of each option and told us the one he preferred. He then asked us to take some time to think about the options and let him know if we agreed with his preference (we did).
During the ensuing trial, Breys experience and determination were very evident. Brey handled the evidence and the witnesses in a professional and dignified manner and presented the judge with a case that would justify the maximum sentence and left no reason for an appeal.
Since the trial I have been fortunate to have Allen as a friend and participant and donor for several fundraisers in Marinette County I sponsor. If the voters in Marinette County want a judge with proven experience and knowledge of the laws, and one who is straight forward and has spent 20 years as a tough, fair prosecutor, vote for Allen Brey.
My family voted for the best choice for D.A. and will cast our vote for the best candidate for Circuit Judge, Allen Brey.
on behalf of the
Marinette has Queen Marinette. Menekaunee has Queen Menekaunee, alias Sandy Saunier. She has pushed and accomplished countless improvements to Menekaunee.
Mentioning just a very few would be the grant for Waupaca that enabled them to expand and stay in the city, resulting in employment and patronizing Menekaunee businesses. Also, outstanding improvements to Red Arrow Park, which also brought in outsiders and business to Menekaunee establishments.
Other thoughts are improvements to Fred Carney Park, Heritage Park, 6th St. Slip, making it possible for a new harbor and a grant of $1.35 million, countless rebuilding and improvements to roads, dredging of the harbor and working for a launch pad and a Tyco Access Agreement are only a very few of Sandys legacy for Menekaunee.
She has worked tirelessly for improvements to Menekaunee. Her official records are a mile long in what she has done and improved in her ward. She was recognized with honors from the League of Wisconsin Municipalities for her service and strong dedication.
People all over this area know Sandy for her kindness and gentle manner, and always doing and aiming for others with Menekaunee as her passion.
Stakes are far too high to stay home and not vote. Sandy is definitely the candidate most capable of accomplishing most for Menekaunee. Re-elect Sandy Saunier in Ward 1 on April 2.
Relative of deceased
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