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Kenosha County Sheriff Rejects Major Change to Inmate Database

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Sheriff David W. Zoerner At Kenosha County Law Enforcement Round Table
(File Photo by Kevin Mathewson, Kenosha County Eye)

Kenosha County Sheriff David W. Zoerner has rejected a massive overhaul to the online Kenosha County Jail inmate roster. The Kenosha County Jail’s steering committee recommended to the Sheriff that he only display current inmates on the search. This would mean, that if someone was arrested at 2:00 am, but bails out at 3:00 am, few people would ever learn of the arrest. The steering committee is comprised of members of Kenosha Police, Kenosha Sheriff, Joint Services and Kenosha Fire. The committee considered one problem that the inmate roster creates – innocent people’s data. When someone is arrested, they are photographed and fingerprinted. The Kenosha DA’s office could decide not to charge them. They could also face a jury of their peers, and be found not guilty. Charges could be dismissed. For these people, their booking information and mugshot remain online. It is still a public records and the Sheriff’s Department isn’t doing anything wrong here. However, there is a process for someone to get their booking information and mugshot off of this website. According to the Wisconsin DOJ, you may have your arrest record purged if the following applies:

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1) found to be not guilty, 2) the charges were dismissed by the court or prosecutor, or 3) no charges were filed by the prosecutor

Once the Wisconsin Department of Justice purges your arrest(s), you can provide that document to the Sheriff’s Department and they will take down your booking info and mugshot. It is important to know, however that the police report, mugshot, and booking data still has to be released by the Sheriff to anyone who requests it – it just won’t be openly displayed.

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Chief Deputy Justin Miller told KCE today that he wants to educate the public more thoroughly about how people in these categories can have this information removed. Miller told KCE that the key players in the criminal justice system were not contacted during the steering committees’ decision. He says that has now occurred. “The negatives that would come from this change out weigh the positives of having the system up. That’s why I recommended that the Sheriff keeps things the way they are.”

“I thank the committee for bringing this important matter up. I will not be changing the roster at this time,” said Sheriff Zoerner.

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Screenshot From The Kenosha County Sheriff’s Office Inmate Roster

Criminal defense attorneys like Michael Cicchini and Eric Olson use the roster almost every day. “I use the roster for many reasons. It is the best tool for determining sentencing credit for clients. I can see the date of booking and date of release. Prosecutors use it too.  It makes it easy for us to agree to the length of time served when it’s right there in black and white,” said Attorney Cicchini.  “I’m glad that the Sheriff is keeping this in place,” said Attorney Eric Olson. “I’m also elated that he kept video calls from attorneys to inmates free of charge. It really helps me stay connected to my clients when in-person visits are not available due to illness, etc.” Judges use this system as well as the media.

In 2017, the jail roster switched to a new system. Miller told KCE that this system will stay up.

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23 Responses

  1. For once government isn’t making info harder to find. Good on Sheriff Zoerner for not allowing this change. About time an elected official stood up to a bunch of unelected bureaucrats!

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  2. The ‘criminal’ should be able to get a copy of their police report unredacted without having to ask and to pay an attorney to get it.
    Another of Beth’s’ making it harder to defend one’s self’ action. Smh

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  3. It should be the duty of the sheriffs department to remove info of people they wrongly accused or found not guilty. As someone who has been the victim of a false arrest due to a fucking idiot that is no longer on the force, I have to jump through hoops to clear my name.

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  4. I can see a big issue arising from the personal info being shown. Sure, show a pic and the charges, etc…..but they publish actual addresses.

    Would seem to be a very easy way to find someone in the wrong hands in terms of identity theft. They probably should at least remove that information.

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    1. When you are arrested, and especially charged with a crime, you lose privacy. People who commit crimes have their addresses dates of birth and other personal identifying information posted publicly on the Circuit Court access site and all of their information is a matter of public record

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      1. Kevin, also, the archived (prior to 2017) roster now shows this….thus I assume he has made his mind up on the archived rosters?

        Beginning August 17, 2023, the Kenosha County Sheriff’s Department Inmate Search will display in-custody inmates only.

        You can access the in-custody inmate search at inmate.kenoshajs.org

        The removal of the released inmate search archive page does not affect the Sheriff’s Department policy on record retention.

        If you require incarceration dates, that information can be given to you by calling the Jail information telephone number.

      2. “People who commit crimes have their addresses dates of birth and other personal identifying information posted publicly on the Circuit Court access site and all of their information is a matter of public record”

        Sadly, the same goes for people who DON’T commit crimes but are charged.

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        1. Very good point. I moved out of Krapnosha some time back, but I was falsely accused (By a guy who has been ‘featured’ by Kevin Matthewson as a long time criminal and fraud on this site) of a variety of crimes, despite being, proven beyond shadow of doubt, to have been in the north woods visiting friends when this supposed ‘rampage of destruction’ that no one else ever saw, supposedly happened. I’ve tried, to no avail, to have the arrest info purged, and three times before moving out of Kraptacular Kenosha I had guys who tracked me down, presumably through jail records, trying to strongarm money and property from me.

      1. @Fake

        OK, but that doesn’t change the fact that they still provide addresses for a high majority of people. If they stopped doing it recently, then there is obviously a reason for that. They should erase it from all of them.

        CCAP also used to print license plate numbers for traffic citations……they obviously removed that years ago.

  5. Good for the sheriff, POS district attorneys like our own Gravely have insured that this information must be published, since there’s a good chance that they will be not prosecuted due to wolkness and complete disdain for the law.

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  6. should also be required to publish a follow up once case disposition is complete. Including, amended charges, sentence and both attorneys and judges name.

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