The former lawyer of Brendan Dassey, who became known to the public on the true crime series Making a Murderer, is in legal trouble of his own. The website Law&Crime reports that Len Kachinsky was arrested Monday in Winnebago County, Wisconsin, for alleged stalking and violation of a temporary restraining order. A female law clerk who works with Kachinsky was the one who sought the order on grounds of harassment, accusing the judge of actions detailed in previous court filings as “erratic behavior, harassment against the clerk and subsequent retaliation against her,” according to reporting from the Appleton Post-Crescent. “The documents include accusations that he made cat noises while staring at her for almost 40 minutes; sent an email that she, village administration and the police chief interpreted as a threat; continually emails her about nonwork issues; and filed letters of reprimand against her for such conduct as refusing to acknowledge or return Christmas greetings.” The clerk says the harassment has been ongoing for more than a year. (And Kachinsky claimed in an email from June that a toy cat made the cat noises.)
Kachinsky characterizes his interactions with the clerk as “a workplace relationship gone bad,” but as the Post-Crescent reports the temporary restraining order against him was granted, and it “prohibits Kachinsky from having contact with his court clerk other than through work-related functions and limits communication to work topics. The order, which expires on May 1, 2019, also prohibits him from having contact with his clerk, her residence, her family, or their residences in addition to mandating that a third person be present for any one-on-one meetings between Kachinsky and the clerk.” The former attorney, who has been working as a judge in the Fox Crossing Municipal Court, told the Post-Crescent in an email that he was released this morning without being charged. The matter is still being investigated by the Winnebago County District Attorney’s Office and the Sheriff’s Department, and the Wisconsin Judicial Commission has filed a complaint with the State Supreme Court.
Kachinsky did not see the Dassey case through to its conclusion, as he was removed from it in 2006 before it went to trial. Law&Crime reports additionally that he “was subsequently de-certified by the state public defender’s office for ‘deficient’ performance.”