Within a six-month span, there were four deaths at the Milwaukee County jail. One of those deaths was a stillborn child, and another was ruled a homicide by the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner. Clarke hasn’t responded to accusations of his staff failing to protect inmates or give adequate medical attention.
He continues to play by his own rules, giving his support, time and attention to national politics and politicians. Recently Clarke met with President-elect Trump for the possibility of securing a cabinet level position within the administration as head of the Department of Homeland Security.
Clarke continues to dodge questions about his own department and staff. In a statement to Fox 6 news, Clarke’s office said, “The sheriff said he is thoroughly bored with this Democrat Party fake news because he helped Donald Trump get elected POTUS.”
The Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors is taking a stand and hoping to get Clarke to respond in a real way that saves lives.
Currently, the way things are set up, Sheriff Clarke has jurisdiction over the reviews of the deaths inside the Milwaukee County jail.
Thursday the board passed a resolution that sets a policy to require outside investigations of deaths at county jails.
According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Sheriff Clarke hasn’t said if he’ll follow the policy.
The supervisors voted 15-1 in favor of the policy, their response to four recent deaths at the Milwaukee County Jail and Clarke’s actions following the deaths. The policy does not carry the legal authority to force Clarke, who runs the Milwaukee County Jail independently of the board, to get outside investigations into the deaths.
The policy can be legally enforced at the House of Correction, which is run by the county.
Supervisors supporting the policy described it as the best course of action they can take in light of Clarke’s refusal to publicly disclose more information or request outside investigations into the deaths.
“It’s unfortunate that our hands are tied as a board at this point in time, legally,” Supervisor Anthony Staskunas said. “I hope this can be a good first start and an invitation to the Sheriff’s Office that we want to work with them.”
For more on the Milwaukee County Board’s resolution, visit Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.