Milwaukee County

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Milwaukee County Deputy District Attorney Patrick J. Kenney  

Patrick J. Kenney has been a prosecutor for the Milwaukee County District Attorney’s office for over 30 years. He was promoted to Deputy District Attorney (DDA) in 1999. Prior to becoming a DDA, he was assigned to several positions within the office, including general crimes, White Collar and Organized Crime and the Drug Unit. As a member of the general crimes teams, he prosecuted everything from drunk driving to homicides and made appearances before the District One Court of Appeals.  In the White Collar and Organized Crime Unit, he focused on employee embezzlement, insurance fraud, drug trafficking and police misconduct cases. He became acting Team Captain of the Unit and was subsequently asked to start a separate Drug Unit focusing on large conspiracy cases in 1988. He successfully sought a federal grant and  the Drug Unit was largely funded by federal Bryne Grant funds. The funding provided money for additional police officers, overtime for existing drug investigators, financial crimes DA investigators and additional prosecutors. The Unit was called the Milwaukee Metropolitan Drug Enforcement Group and included co-location of police, accountants and prosecutors. With an additional grant, the unit was expanded to handle all felony drug cases and staff Milwaukee’s first speedy trial court.

Following his promotion in 1999, Kenney was transferred to the Children’s Court Center in January 2000 where he supervised delinquency prosecution, children in need of protection and services (CHIPS) cases and termination of parental rights (TPR). At the time of his transfer, the State and County were being sued for violating federal law regarding the legal status of over 5,000 foster children. The lawsuit was settled in 2001 and Kenney’s responsibilities included bringing Milwaukee County into compliance with federal law. In partnership with the Children’s Court judges, the office was reorganized to take advantage of federal regulations leading to  funding for additional ADA’s to prosecute the backlog of TPR’s and guardianship cases. Within a few years, the DA’s office was in full compliance with the federal lawsuit mandate.

In 2008, District Attorney John T. Chisholm created the Child Protection and Advocacy Unit (CPAU) to prosecute caregiver child abuse and neglect cases. The office was reorganized  and Kenney was assigned to supervise CPAU, the Domestic Violence Unit (DV), the Sensitive Crimes Unit (SCU), 980 Prosecutions (sex predators) CHIPS and TPR. He is supported by team captains who greatly assist him including ADA Libby Mueller (CHIPS and TPR), ADA Chris Liegel (SCU), ADA Holly Bunch (980), ADA Peter Tempelis (DV) and ADA Matt Torbenson. 

Kenney has been a member of the Executive Board of the Wisconsin District Attorneys Association since 1995. He has been appointed to Legislative Council Committees and helped author several laws. He was the Chair of the Ethics Committee for the WDAA during the Ethics 2000 process and successfully advocated for Supreme Court ethical rule changes before the Wisconsin Supreme Court. He has taught continuing legal education classes on a variety of topics.      



Milwaukee County District Attorney’s Office

821 West State Street, Suite 405

Milwaukee, WI 53233

     Phone: 414-278-4646

     Fax: 414-223-1955