MADISON, Wis. — A Republican running for an open state Assembly seat next week was cited for disorderly conduct after he kicked his then-18-year-old daughter out of the house nearly 21 years ago.
Jon Plumer of Lodi faces Democrat Ann Groves Lloyd in a special election June 12 in the 42nd Assembly District. The district has leaned red but Democrats are hoping unhappiness with President Donald Trump will help them flip the seat.
Plumer on Monday denied hurting anyone in the 1997 incident, saying his daughter exaggerated the episode. Lloyd's campaign didn't reply to an email but state Democratic Party spokeswoman Melanie Conklin said the incident "certainly speaks to (Plumer's) character and is important for voters in the special election to know."
According to police reports, Plumer and his family were living in Sun Prairie in October 1997 when Plumer kicked his 18-year-old daughter, Jennifer, out of the house during a family argument.
Neighbor Darwin Dobson told police that the teenager showed up on his doorstep and told him that Plumer had physically pushed her out of the house. She said he tore a phone off the wall and pushed her mother, Christine Plumer, to the floor.
Dobson told police he went over to the Plumer house to check on Christine Plumer. When she opened the door her eyes were red and puffy from crying, Dobson said.
She said she was all right, but Dobson said Jon Plumer then confronted him in the driveway to accuse him of prying. He said Plumer challenged him to step closer so Dobson could see what he was really like. Dobson told police he went home, noting that Plumer was a black belt in karate.
Jon Plumer told police he never pushed his wife down. He said he was arguing with his daughter and "escorted" her out by the arm. Christine Plumer told police the same thing.
Still, he was cited for disorderly conduct. When he failed to show up for his initial court appearance, a warrant was issued.
Plumer said in a telephone interview Monday that he didn't think the appearance was mandatory. A state trooper stopped him and took him to the State Patrol's DeForest headquarters, he said.
Court records show he posted a $177 bond and was released. Court records indicate a Dane County court commissioner in December 1998 decided the bond would cover the $116 disorderly conduct forfeiture and the case was closed.
A search of online court records in Wisconsin found no other arrests for Plumer, and he said Monday that he had had no other arrests.
He said he yelled at his daughter — "God was in a weird mood when he created teenagers," he said — but he never pushed his wife down. He also denied he ever spoke to Dobson in the driveway.
Jennifer Plumer said in an interview Monday that she lied about what happened that night. She and her father were yelling at each other and he kicked her out but didn't hurt her, she said. She said she told Dobson that her father pushed her mother down because she had a rocky relationship with her father and was looking for ways to hurt him.
"My wife and children mean the world to me," Plumer said in a statement released by his campaign. "I would never hurt any of them. Of course, years ago I accepted my daughter's apology for mischaracterizing the situation."
Dobson, who has since moved to Texas, said Monday that his account to police was correct. He said he remembers Plumer told him to mind his own business, to which he replied "your business is in my living room," referring to Jennifer Plumer.