Sunday, October 21st

Brad Schimel, a Republican, is attorney general for the state of Wisconsin.(Photo: Mike De Sisti, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel)

Attorney General Brad Schimel really doesn't like criticism. 

His agency went after an ex-assistant attorney general last year after the retiree made critical remarks in the Journal Sentinel over a deal the Department of Justice had struck with a polluter. 

Schimel's office said it was looking into whether the retiree — Thomas Dawson, long the state's top environmental lawyer — provided confidential information to the press. Officials considered Dawson a state worker because his unused vacation time was still being paid out.

"I regard what they did as retaliation," Dawson said this week of the previously undisclosed investigation. 

RELATED: Wisconsin allows 3M to settle pollution case without paying fine

RELATED: Bice: Brad Schimel requiring all Wisconsin DOJ employees to sign nondisclosure agreements

Dawson said he gave no documents, just his on-the-record opinion, when contacted by Journal Sentinel reporter Lee Bergquist in March 2017.