Supreme Court hands down suspension to former judge Len Kachinsky

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MADISON, Wis. (WBAY) - The Wisconsin Supreme Court has handed down a three-year suspension to former Fox Crossing Municipal Judge Len Kachinsky.

On July 9, the justices issued an order that suspends Kachinsky from eligibility for appointment as a reserve municipal court judge for three years.

"In addition, because Judge Kachinsky's misconduct demonstrates that he currently lacks the judicial temperament and the insight into his actions that are required for a judge to preside over and manage a court, we also require him to petition this court and successfully demonstrate to us that he is fit to serve as a reserve municipal judge before he may request an appointment to serve as a reserve municipal judge from the chief judge of the applicable judicial district," reads the court's 44-page decision.

CLICK HERE to read the full decision.

The Supreme Court issued their ruling in response to a Wisconsin Judicial Commission recommendation that Kachinsky be suspended for a "period of at least one year but not more than three years."

The recommendation was made in response to to a ethics complaint filed against Kachinsky. After an evidentiary hearing, the panel concluded that Kachinsky violated the Code of Judicial Conduct.

"We have found multiple acts in violation of the judicial code of conduct thus demonstrating that Judge Kachinsky's misconduct was not an isolated occurrence but a pattern of conduct," the panel stated.

Kachinsky was initially suspended by the Wisconsin Supreme Court after he was arrested in a criminal stalking case. A Fox Crossing clerk accused Kachinsky of harassment. Kachinsky was found not guilty by a jury, and he asked the Wisconsin Supreme Court to reinstate him for the remainder of his term. Kachinsky did not seek re-election as municipal court judge, but he could be called to serve as a reserve judge.

In 2018, the clerk who accused Kachinsky of harassment was granted a restraining order against him. Under the order, Kachinsky was to have no contact with her outside of work and all communications "shall be limited to what is necessary to perform the functions of the Village of Fox Crossing Municipal Court."

In April 2019, Kachinsky was charged with three counts of Knowingly Violating a Harassment Restraining Order.

Kachinsky was replaced on the bench after the April 2 election. However, he continued to send emails to the clerk.

Kachinsky says his emails were "part of running the Municipal Court." Police told the former judge that he had "no role in the running of the Municipal Court and, therefore, the emails were in violation of the injunction."

A jury trial is scheduled for Sept. 26 in the restraining order violation case.

Kachinsky, a former attorney, was featured in the Netflix series "Making A Murderer." He served as Brendan Dassey's attorney following Dassey's arrest for the murder of Teresa Halbach.