Updated: 10/31/2013 10:40 PM
Created: 10/30/2013 11:10 AM WDIO.com
Cook County Attorney Tim Scannell has been charged with two counts fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct.
The decision to charge Scannell was made by a grand jury from St. Louis County and was announced Thursday by Thomas Heffelfinger, a former U.S. Attorney who was appointed to review the case.
Last December, a 17-year-old girl's family asked for and was granted a restraining order against him. The order says that Scannell confessed he was in love with the girl in September 2012.
According to court documents related to the restrainting order, Scannell had an inappropriate relationship with the teenager, who he's known since she was a child.
Scannell is now on medical leave, which county officials said he requested about two weeks ago. He appeared in court Thursday and has not entered a plea.
In a written statement released Thursday, Scannell's attorney, Richard W. Swanson, said Scannell knows that he acted inappropriately but says he did not act criminally.
Scannell was shot in his office by a man who had just been convicted in December 2011. Thursday's statement said Scannell and his family have been under extreme stress since the shooting, and said the alleged events in this case "occurred while he was suffering in the darkest hours of his severe depression."
A group of citizens has been protesting over Scannell's continued position as county attorney each Friday for months, and has said they will until Scannell leaves office. He's up for re-election next fall.
The Office of Lawyers Professional Responsibility said Thursday they are aware of the charges. They will be initiating an investigation file and will monitor the matter.
Superior Residents Rally for Minimum Wage Increase
Superior residents rallied to support a minimum wage increase on Thursday. The event was organized by Citizen Action of Wisconsin and We Are Wisconsin. The group marched to the Douglas County Courthouse, calling on Rep. Sean Duffy to support raising the minimum wage.
Man Seriously Injured After Rock Goes Through Windshield, Crashes on Hwy. 2
A 32-year-old man was seriously injured when a rock went through his windshield, causing him to lose control of the vehicle and vault over a driveway.
Sheriff Warns of Wolf Attacks in Grand Marais
The Cook County Sheriff is warning the public about recent incidents of wolves attacking dogs and approaching people on the north side of Grand Marais. There have been several recent incidents stretching from Birchwood Apartments to Gofer Trailer Court.
Move-In Day for UMD
The population in Duluth went up a couple of thousand on Thursday, as the freshman class at UMD moved into the dorms.
Incoming UWS Freshmen Carry the Comforts of Home
Incoming freshmen moved into their dorms at the University of Wisconsin Superior on Thursday. The new college students were carrying all of their belongings, including a lot of technology that hasn't always been so common on a college campus.