COUNTY BOARD TO HONOR PARADIGM SHOOTING RESPONDERS
March 21, 2019
Sharon Corrigan, County Board Chair 608.333.2285
Thursday meeting also to address criminal record expungement, mental health crisis study
Six months ago, four employees of Middleton-based software company Paradigm were injured in a shooting that eventually ended with the shooter being killed in an exchange of gunfire with Middleton Police and Dane County Sheriff deputies.
On Thursday, the Dane County Board will honor the public safety professionals and Paradigm staff involved in the shooting including the first responders who rushed into the building and prevented an even greater tragedy on the morning of Sept. 19, 2018.
“Due to the fast action and brave work of everyone involved, this horrific incident was quickly brought under control, avoiding more injuries and additional loss of life,” said Dane County Board Chair Sharon Corrigan (District 26, Middleton).
A resolution before the Board at its 7 p.m. meeting Thursday in Room 201 of the City-County Building recognizes city of Middleton police officers, Dane County Sheriff deputies, Wisconsin DNR wardens, emergency personnel and employees of Paradigm who were critical in stopping the shooter.
The resolution names some 80 different personnel involved in the incident including dispatchers and investigators. A copy of the resolution will be presented to Middleton Police Chief Charles Foulke, Dane County Sheriff Dave Mahoney and Paradigm CEO Nathan Herbst.
“I want to personally thank all of those who work tirelessly throughout the year and often behind the scenes but stand ready in times of emergency,” said Corrigan.
The resolution also notes Paradigm employees who acted decisively and rendered aid to wounded co-workers until paramedics arrived. In the days and months since the incident, Paradigm and its staff have worked to provide a supportive environment for the community to heal.
Also Thursday, the Board will consider two resolutions related to its ongoing efforts to improve the justice system in both Dane County and statewide.
One resolution urges reform of criminal record expungement to bring Wisconsin more in line with its neighboring states.
An estimated 1.4 million individuals in Wisconsin have criminal records, which can significantly impact their ability to secure housing or employment. In many cases, those records are not entirely accurate and complete, especially as it relates to people of color.
Current law does not allow for expungement after sentencing or case closure and does not allow for expungement for acquittals or dismissed charges. Those issues were addressed in a report from the Wisconsin Policy Forum that found Wisconsin with stricter expungement law than all of its neighboring states except Iowa.
"Wisconsin has some of the worst racial disparities in the country,” said Supervisor Yogesh Chawla (District 6, Madison). “Expungement reform offers many of our neighbors a pathway toward employment, housing and higher education by allowing judges to give them a much-needed second chance."
The resolution urges action by the Legislature, Governor Tony Evers and the Wisconsin Counties Association in the upcoming session.
Another resolution before the Board Thursday involves selection of the Public Consulting Group (PCG) by the Department of Human Services to conduct a complete review of the current mental health and substance use services provided by both public and private funders.
PCG is charged with gathering information through focus groups and interviews from stakeholders who are directing and providing behavioral health services. The review will identify the needs, gaps and possible solutions to address any issues identified along with assessing the feasibility of a mental health crisis facility.
“Much work has been done to move forward on the County Board’s mental health feasibility study,” said Supervisor Jamie Kuhn (District 16, Madison). “This work is necessary so we may better understand all the important mental health services being offered throughout the community, as well as asses the gaps.”
People with mental health and/or substance abuse issues can end up involved with the criminal justice system. Dane County has been working to separate out those individuals for treatment before they end up in jail.
Other items before the Board Thursday include:
A resolution congratulating Department of Health and Human Services director Lynn Green on her retirement after 46-plus years with Dane County.
A resolution honoring 67 individuals for 25 years of service with Dane County. Eleven of those individuals will be on hand Thursday for awards.
Awarding of $591,346 to MSP Real Estate, Inc. for the proposed The Grove Apartments at 202 Cottage Grove Road in Madison. The proposed development will have a total of 112 units, 95 of which will be earmarked for low-income tenants including persons re-entering the community from incarceration, veterans and/or individuals experiencing homelessness.
Extending Dane County Library Service (DCLS) mobile library service to the Madison neighborhoods of Park Edge/Park Ridge, Allied Drive, Leopold School, Vera Court/Kennedy Heights and Reindahl Park. DCLS will provide weekly service using the Dream Bus, a gift from the Goodman Foundation.