Trempealeau County District Attorney Taavi McMahon will not finish his current term.
John Sacia, McMahon’s former assistant, won 2,244 to 450 Tuesday in the Democratic primary for a recall election.
Sacia will now face Republican Rick Niemeyer, a Trempealeau County attorney, in the Nov. 6 general election.
McMahon was elected to a second four-year term as district attorney in 2016. He suspended Sacia on Aug. 15, the same day Sacia filed his intent to run in the recall election. Sacia called the suspension “100 percent retaliatory in nature,” a contention McMahon has denied.
In a news release, McMahon said Sacia conspired with Kevin Deeren, a candidate for Trempealeau County sheriff, to collect signatures for the recall petition intended to oust McMahon from office.
The recall petition drive was led in part by Osseo police Chief William Prudlick and Officer Daniel McQuillan. They and others have criticized McMahon for sometimes being unprepared for court, for too often ignoring the advice of law enforcement officers and for reducing charges in serious cases, especially those involving drugs.
McMahon defended reserving prison for violent criminals and advocates greater use of drug treatment courts and diversion programs for low-risk offenders.
Last October, a Trempealeau County committee sent a letter to Gov. Scott Walker objecting to McMahon’s job performance, calling him “derelict in his duties.”
In December, the County Board asked Walker to suspend McMahon and investigate whether he had lied to a judge. The governor’s office found he had not. The board also called on McMahon to resign, but he refused.
McMahon had said his former assistant lacks the criminal trial experience a district attorney needs while touting his own experience “at holding domestic abusers, sex offenders, violent offenders and drug dealers accountable.”
Sacia had pledged to promote “transparency and integrity” in the Trempealeau County DA’s office.
Trempealeau County district attorney recall primary unofficial results
|Municiipality||John Sacia||Taavi McMahon||Write-in|
|Town of Albion Wards 1-2||32||13||1|
|Town of Arcadia Wards 1-4||153||33||0|
|Town of Burnside Wards 1-2||61||5||0|
|Town of Caledonia Wards1-2||66||4||0|
|Town of Chimney Rock Ward 1||20||5||0|
|Town of Dodge Ward 1||38||3||0|
|Town of Ettrick Wards 1-2||120||73||0|
|Town of Gale Wards 1-3||185||20||1|
|Town of Hale Ward 1||71||13||0|
|Town of Lincoln Wards 1-2||35||8||0|
|Town of Pigeon Wards 1-2||53||10||0|
|Town of Preston Wards 1-3||60||14||0|
|Town of Sumner Ward 1||25||3||0|
|Town of Trempealeau Wards 1-2||198||20||0|
|Town of Unity Wards 1-2||24||4||0|
|Village of Eleva Ward 1||20||16||0|
|Village of Ettrick Ward 1||77||26||0|
|Village of Pigeon Falls Ward 1||45||9||0|
|Village of Strum Wards 1-2||62||14||3|
|Village of Trempealeau Wards 1-2||165||14||3|
|City of Arcadia Wards 1-3||125||19||0|
|City of Blair Wards 1-3||99||32||1|
|City of Galesville Wards 1-3||187||28||0|
|City of Independence Wards 1-3||108||7||1|
|City of Osseo Wards 1-3||103||23||0|
|City of Whitehall Wards 1-3||112||34||1|
Sign up for our Crime & Courts newsletter
Get the latest in local public safety news with this weekly email.