- Associated Press - Monday, December 4, 2017

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - The Latest on sexual misconduct in the Wisconsin Legislature (all times local):

4:40 p.m.

The Legislature’s clerks’ offices say they’ve received four sexual harassment complaints over the last decade.

Assembly Chief Clerk Patrick Fuller said Monday that his office received one complaint in 2014 and one in 2017. Senate Chief Clerk Jeff Renk his office received one complaint in 2009 and one in 2011. They didn’t offer any details of the alleged incidents.

Renk said, however, that whoever filed one of the Senate complaints also filed a complaint alleging she was wrongfully terminated from her job as an aide to former Sen. Spencer Coggs. Renk said that complaint included “sexual harassment language.”

It’s unclear who allegedly harassed her. Coggs said in an email Monday that he has never harassed any of his employees.

The Legislature settled that complaint for $75,000.


2:55 p.m.

The state Senate’s chief clerk says his office has received two sexual harassment complaints against a senator or Senate employee over the last decade.

The Associated Press asked both the Assembly and Senate clerks for copies of all sexual harassment complaints against members and employees received since 2007. Both clerks denied the request last week citing victim and the accused’s privacy concerns.

Senate Chief Clerk Jeff Renk sent a follow-up response to The AP’s request on Monday. He noted his office has received two complaints during that time span, one in 2009 and one 2011.

The 2011 complaint was linked to a wrongful termination settlement the Legislature reached with a former Senate aide. Renk’s letter didn’t elaborate.


10:05 a.m.

Assembly Democrats are weighing what punishment Rep. Josh Zepnick deserves after two women accused him of sexual misconduct.

The Capital Times reported Friday that two women who requested anonymity accused Zepnick of trying to kiss them at a 2011 candidate party and at the 2015 state Democratic convention. Zepnick has said he doesn’t remember the incidents but has apologized.

Assembly Democratic Minority Leader Gordon Hintz tweeted Friday that Zepnick should resign. Hintz’s spokeswoman, Emily Pritzkow, said Monday that Hintz’s office was researching potential punishments.

Hintz could remove Zepnick from all the committees he sits on, prohibit him from attending caucus meetings or move to censure him. He also could call for the Assembly to vote on expelling Zepnick or try to remove him from office through the impeachment process.

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