Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. — the controversial, Stetson-wearing official who rose to national prominence with his no-holds-barred conservative rhetoric — resigned his office Thursday.
Clarke, who is in his fourth term, submitted a resignation letter to Milwaukee County Clerk George Christenson on Thursday afternoon. The sheriff was attending the convention of the National Fraternal Order of Police in Nashville and could not be reached for comment.
“Pursuant to Wis. Stat. 17.01, this communication is submitted as the notice of my resignation as Sheriff of Milwaukee County commencing Aug. 31, 2017, at 11:59 p.m.,” stated Clarke’s resignation letter.
Craig Peterson, an adviser to Clarke, said the sheriff would be making an announcement about his future next week.
“Clarke wants people to know that he appreciates his 15 years of service and the support he’s gotten from the residents of Milwaukee County,” Peterson said. News of the resignation was first reported by conservative talk show host Mark Belling.
Clarke is not expected to be headed to President Donald Trump’s administration.
Earlier this year, he was passed over for a job in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Clarke, a frequent surrogate for Trump during his successful 2016 campaign, also interviewed last year for a job in Trump’s cabinet.
Gov. Scott Walker will appoint Clarke’s successor, but the process won’t begin until the governor’s office receives the sheriff’s resignation letter.
Once that happens, the governor will seek applications, a process that usually takes a couple of weeks, and then begin interviewing candidates. Applicants must live in Milwaukee County to be appointed to the post.