Rindfleisch pleads guilty to felony misconduct
MILWAUKEE- One of Governor Scott Walker's former top aides has pleaded guilty to a count of felony misconduct in office in a deal with prosecutors.
Kelly Rindfleisch entered the plea Thursday in front of Milwaukee County Circuit Judge David Hansher.
Rindfleisch tried to plead no contest, but the judge would not allow it, so she changed her plea to guilty.
In an unusual move, Rindfleisch's defense attorney Frank Gimbel asked the judge to enter the guilty plea after the November election.
"So she has one last opportunity to vote," pleaded Gimbel. But the judge rejected that idea.
Rindfleisch served as Walker's deputy chief of staff during the Republican's tenure as Milwaukee County executive in 2010. Prosecutors have accused her of working on Republican Brett Davis' lieutenant governor campaign on county time.
She faced four felony counts of misconduct in office. She reached a deal with Milwaukee County Assistant District Attorney Bruce Landgraf calling for her to plead to one count and Landgraf to drop the others. He also agreed to recommend she be sentenced to jail and probation rather than prison and promised not to seek restitution.
Governor Walker had been subpoenaed to testify in the case, but the assistant district attorney admitted he did not plan on calling Walker to the stand.
"I released the governor from my subpoena about a week and a half ago," says Landgraf.
But, Landgraf says with former Walker aide Timothy Russell facing trial, Governor Walker could still testify in court.
"He is named in that complaint, and that would be a possible reason for possibly talking to the governor. It remains to be seen whether he would have to testify in that case."