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Schimel: Pergande deal still on

July 28, 2014

Waukesha — Waukesha County District Attorney Brad Schimel said he is still willing to accept a plea agreement from former Butler Police Lt. Brian Pergande even though Waukesha County Circuit Court Judge Donald J. Hassin Jr turned down a previous agreement reached between Schimel and Pergande's attorney Michael Steinle.

On July 18, Hassin would not accept Pergande's plea of "no contest" to disorderly conduct charges that related to an incident in September of 2009 when Pergande allegedly took inappropriate photos of a woman he had improperly detained at the Butler Village Police Department. Pergande resigned from the Butler police department and offered the plea in exchange for Schimel dropping charges of felony official misconduct, which carried a potential prison sentence and fine.

Schimel said he has contacted Steinle and told him he is still willing to carry out the plea agreement if a judge will agree. Otherwise, Schimel said both sides will have to start preparing for a trial in October.

Schimel emphasized that Pergande still has the right to seek a jury trial on the felony charges despite his "no contest" plea to the disorderly conduct charges.

However, Schimel said Pergande may have to do more to convince the judge that he engaged in disorderly conduct when he took the photos.

Schimel said he did not think Hassin was satisfied that the elements of a disorderly conduct charge were present enough after Pergande explained his plea.

According to state law, a person commits disorderly conduct by engaging in a violent, abusive, indecent, or unreasonably loud action that tends to disturb or provoke others.

At one point during the court session, Hassin said Pergande's description of why he took the pictures "makes no sense."

Pergande said he took photographs of the woman because he was referring her to another police agency to assist them in drug investigations.

He said apparently the woman was uncomfortable with the way he was taking the pictures.

Pergande told police investigators that someone had cropped and edited the photos to emphasize the woman's breasts. The photos were discovered in former Butler Police Chief Michael Cosgrove's computer during an investigation of Cosgrove and the department conducted by the Waukesha County Sheriff's office.

Cosgrove retired in the midst of the investigation and Pergande was placed on paid administrative leave for more than a year awaiting possible criminal charges.

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Weekend Happenings

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David HB Drake: Wiscon-Sing: 7 p.m. March 20, Peace Lutheran Church & Academy, W240-N6145 Maple Ave., Sussex. Using folk music and instruments, musician and songwriter David HB Drake presents Wiscon-Sing, taking the audience on a multimedia musical tour through Wisconsin’s history. Entertaining education for all ages. Free. www.peacelutheranacademy.org

 The Milwaukee Guitar Quartet: 4 p.m. March 22, Hawks Inn Visitor Center, 426 Wells St., Delafield. Classical guitar quartet performs various styles, from Baroque to Sousa. Concert is 4-6 p.m. Call (262) 337-1560 for information., $10. www.summerstageofdelafield.org

Fish Fry: 4:30 p.m. March 20, St. Paul School, S38 W31602 County Road D, Genesee Depot. All-you-can-eat fish fry, from 4:30 to 7:30 p.m., includes baked potato or curly fries, coleslaw, dessert, applesauce, grilled cheese, coffee or milk. Soda and beer available for purchase. $10.50 adult, $5 children, free for ages 4 and younger.

 Chili Lunch and Pie Auction: 10 a.m. March 22, Zion Lutheran Church, N557 Main St., Ashippun. The annual event will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information call the church office at (920) 474-7234 or www.zionashippun.org

Updates to this calendar are made weekly Monday afternoon. 

 

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