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Gov. Evers appoints commissioner to investigate DA Gary King as King’s access to courthouse is restricted

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EAU CLAIRE (WQOW) - Governor Tony Evers is appointing a commissioner to conduct a hearing on the allegations against embattled Eau Claire County District Attorney Gary King.

According to the governor's office, that commissioner will do any necessary investigating and report the findings to the governor as only he can remove King from office.

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This comes after News 18's investigation last week where we were first to report King stands accused of repeatedly sexually harassing one of his female employees and showing up at work under the influence of alcohol.

Two former assistant district attorneys sent letters to the governor last week asking for King to be removed from office.

One of those former assistant district attorneys still lives in Eau Claire County, which means her letter is the verified, written complaint the governor's office needed to trigger this response.

News 18 has also learned the county administrator is restricting King's access to the courthouse.

In a response to News 18's open records request, County Administrator Kathryn Schauf provided News 18 a copy of a letter sent to King on Monday.

It informs King he can only enter the courthouse during open hours by using a public entrance. If he goes to the second floor where his office and the courtrooms are located, he must go through the security checkpoint. The letter says his badge access to other areas of the courthouse have been restricted/deactivated.

In the letter, Schauf said the decision was made after consulting with Eau Claire County judges and Sheriff Ron Cramer who is responsible for courthouse security.

Schauf did not respond directly to News 18's question of the reasoning behind the decision, however, Sheriff Ron Cramer said it is because of the allegation of sexual harassment and keeping county employees safe.

News 18 also learned on Wednesday that King will not be returning to his office for a while.

The DA's office manager, Eric Huse, said that King informed him he will be out of the office for the rest of this week and will be taking leave time for the next two weeks.

Huse said King's court cases are being reassigned to assistant DAs in the office.

King was scheduled to appear in court to prosecute a case on Thursday morning.

Repeated attempts to reach out to King have not been responded to.

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