CONTACT: John P. Koremenos, Jr., Communications Director
MADISON, Wis. – Attorney General Brad Schimel continued his 72-county statewide tour to meet with local law enforcement and elected officials this week with stops in Marinette and Oconto counties on Wednesday, February 7.
“This area of the state has been hit hard by the opioid epidemic and meth, and local leaders are working hard to combat these drugs, but there is more to do,” said Attorney General Schimel. “This meeting was a great opportunity to bring state and local public safety leaders together to identify the next steps in fighting the drug epidemic. Only together will we make our communities safer and stronger.”
“I want to thank Attorney General Schimel for hosting this roundtable,” said Marinette County District Attorney DeShea Morrow. “We had an excellent representation of local law enforcement, corrections, the county board, and the court system, and we had a productive discussion of pressing issues we are facing in our county. DOJ has been a valuable partner to our local law enforcement agencies and to the District Attorney’s Office, and we appreciate Attorney General Schimel’s commitment to supporting local law enforcement as we face new challenges to keep our communities safe.”
“The opioid and meth epidemic continues statewide, not only in the big cities, but here in Oconto County every day,” said Oconto County Sheriff Michael Jansen. “The cooperation that the Attorney General’s Office coordinates through DOJ and the Division of Criminal Investigation leads to a strong team effort here in the county, which is invaluable in the fight against drugs. This cooperation must continue for us to be successful.”
Attorney General Schimel and the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) leadership team is meeting with law enforcement and local officials in every county to discuss public safety concerns specific to each county. The challenges faced by law enforcement leaders and the criminal justice system differ from county to county, even in neighboring communities, making it critical for DOJ to be responsive to public safety needs at the local level. DOJ is local communities’ partner in safety, and these meetings aim to discover what resources and efforts DOJ can provide to make Wisconsin safer and stronger.
DOJ financially supports a number of programs to help public safety officials keep the counties safe. This year, Marinette County will receive more than $125,000 to fund the county’s drug treatment court, providing an alternative to incarceration for those struggling with addiction. Since 2015, DOJ has provided more than $40,000 to Marinette County, and more than $24,000 to Oconto County, to fight heroin and methamphetamine in the region. This funding is available through 2018.
DOJ also financially supports Marinette and Oconto counties’ crime victim services organizations, ensuring that crime victims are given guidance and counseling as they participate in the criminal justice system. Since 2015, through U.S. DOJ Victims of Crime Act grants, DOJ has distributed more than $388,000, to Family Services of Northeast Wisconsin, and more than $160,000 to Rainbow House Domestic Abuse Services.
To see what other counties the Attorney General has visited, and where he will going next, go to: https://www.doj.state.wi.us/ag-roundtable-map