The Calumet County, Wi., district attorney tried to start a relationship with a domestic violence victim by sending her 30 text messages over three days while he was prosecuting her ex-boyfriend, reports the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. District Attorney Kenneth Kratz asked if the woman is “the kind of girl that likes secret contact with an older married elected DA,” said a report from the Kaukauna Police Department. In another text, Kratz wrote, “I know this is wrong.”
Kratz said he was “embarrassed at this lapse of judgment” but that the state Office of Lawyer Regulation determined that no professional misconduct had occurred. Kratz told The Associated Press, which first reported on the text messages, that the situation was “a non-news story.” Kratz had gained attention for his prosecution of Steven Avery, who was convicted in 2007 of killing freelance photographer Teresa Halbach in 2005. She died two years after Avery was released from prison based upon DNA evidence that cleared him of involvement in a sexual assault. Kratz also prosecuted four women who were charged last year with luring a man to a motel and gluing his penis to his abdomen as revenge for his cheating on one of them. Kratz, a Republican, is up for re-election in 2012.