Criminologist questions Walker's police ad

Published On: Jun 03 2012 09:44:44 AM CDT   Updated On: Jun 03 2012 09:43:55 AM CDT

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A criminologist says Republican Gov. Scott Walker's campaign misrepresented his comments about Milwaukee Police Department crime statistics in a campaign ad.

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel newspaper reported last month that Milwaukee police misclassified hundreds of violent crimes as minor assaults. Walker's campaign launched an ad accusing his Democratic challenger, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, of lying about the statistics to make the city's crime rate look better.

The ad flashes a partial quote criminologist Sam Walker gave the newspaper saying the misclassifications are suspicious, improper and represent a failure of leadership next to a shot of Barrett.

Sam Walker says he was referring to police leadership, not the mayor. He says elected officials usually accept data police give them.

Walker campaign spokeswoman Ciara Matthews didn't immediately return a message.