Wis. Lawyer, 64, Arrested After Allegedly Spitting in Teen's Face at Protest

Lawyer Stephanie Rapkin is facing multiple charges after allegedly spitting on one protester, shoving another and kneeing an officer during her arrest, say police

Stephanie Rapkin
Photo: TMJ4 News

A Wisconsin lawyer was arrested twice in a span of 24 hours after allegedly spitting in the face of a young protester at a rally on Saturday and then pushing a protester and kneeing an arresting officer in the groin on Sunday, say police.

On Saturday afternoon at about 4:30 p.m., attorney Stephanie Rapkin, 64, of Shorewood, a suburb of Milwaukee, showed up at a peaceful protest on N. Oakland Ave. and parked her car across the road, blocking the march, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.

Leaving the car in the middle of the road, Rapkin got out and walked up to protesters, where she was caught on camera shouting at them, Patch.com reports.

When protesters asked her to move her car, Rapkin spit on Eric Patrick Lucas III, 17, a Shorewood High School junior who helped organize the rally and march, the Journal Sentinel reports.

Onlookers were stunned.

"I continue to be mentally and physically shaken to be assaulted by an adult in my community during the pandemic," Lucas said later, ABC 7 reports. "Again and again, I am viewed not as a child but as a color."

Rapkin, a probate and estate planning lawyer, was arrested on Saturday night “for spitting on a juvenile male during a verbal altercation that took place in the 4000 block of Oakland Avenue,” the Shorewood Police Department says in a press release.

She is charged with suspicion of battery and disorderly conduct. Her bail was set at $950.

She was not taken to the Milwaukee County Jail for this initial arrest because of coronavirus policies, Patch.com reports.

On Sunday, she was arrested again after allegedly pushing an Ithaca college student in front of her house, Patch.com reports.

On Sunday at 3:41 p.m., police were called about a battery that had allegedly taken place in front of a residence in Shorewood, police say in the press release.

Stephanie Rapkin
Milwaukee Sheriff's Office

The student was among a group protesting in front of Rapkin’s home when she “came out and engaged in a verbal altercation with the protesters,” the release says.

“The victim reported the suspect then slapped both of her hands on the victim’s chest and physically pushed him” and went back inside her house, the release says.

After “numerous unsuccessful attempts,” officers were finally able to make contact with Rapkin.

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When they told her she was under arrest for battery and disorderly conduct, she allegedly “became physically resistive” when one of the officers tried to handcuff her.

During the struggle, Rapkin allegedly kneed one of the officers in the groin, the release says.

Rapkin is seen on video being led backward from her home to the car by officers who escorted her by her elbows.

She was taken to the Shorewood Police Department to finish being booked.

It is unclear if Rapkin has retained an attorney who can speak on her behalf.

Sherwood Police contacted the Milwaukee County Jail who said staff “would be willing to accept the suspect into custody for this incident,” the release says.

Shorewood police will be seeking charges of battery, disorderly conduct, resisting an officer and battery to a law enforcement officer, the release says.

A complaint has been filed with the State Office of Lawyer Regulation, claiming multiple violations, Patch.com reports.

State Rep. David Bowen, who attended the protest, has called for Rapkin to be disbarred, the Journal Sentinel reports.

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<em><strong>• <a href="https://colorofchange.org/">ColorofChange.org</a> works to make government more responsive to racial disparities.</strong></em>

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