What really happened with the Everest Metro Chief investigation
A look at the report's details
News broke in late September that there was an ongoing investigation into Everest Metro Police Chief Clay Schulz. He had allegedly sexually harassed a non-officer employee. The details were scarce and, surprisingly (and something state union reps criticized) Schulz was never placed on administrative leave during the investigation.
The Wausonian received a copy of a conclusion from August that was written by von Briesen and Roper law firm. Many readers will be familiar with the law firm — they’re the ones who often conduct investigations for municipalities. They conducted the investigation of former Marathon County Administrator Brad Karger during the Dylan Yang protest.
That August report, as you might recall, said that the chief’s conduct appeared to be unprofessional but did not meet the legal standard of sexual harassment.
A new report received by the Wausonian, and already reported on by WPR’s Rob Mentzer, is from September. And while I assumed at first it was a more detailed version of the first report, it actually appears to be an entirely new investigation.
I’ve gone through the report twice — first as a general read-through, and a second time while taking notes. These reports are challenging to read, because they’re heavily redacted. Often it takes some time to piece together who is saying what. Since they’re not redacted for the intended audience, there isn’t any attempt to make clear who is saying what.
But for the most part, it’s very clear with just a couple of read-throughs. There’s only one incident I’m slightly unclear on, an incident they call “the office incident” that involves a trip to Aruba.
One thing the WPR story seemed to gloss over though - investigator Hannah Chin of von Briesen found both allegations they investigated unsubstantiated. Moreover, the investigators questioned the credibility of the person making the complaint.
Other complaints were highlighted in the interviews as well but were not part of the original complaints the firm was asked to investigate. The firm suggested that those could be part of a new investigation if the commission wished it.
So, does it highlight the chief’s numerous misdeeds, or exonerate him? Or something in between? Let’s dive in and see…
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