State v. Gregory Mark Radaj, 2014AP2496-CR, District 4, 5/21/15 (recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs)

A defendant who committed a felony before the effective date of the law mandating a $250 DNA surcharge for each felony conviction, but who is sentenced after that effective date, cannot be made to pay the surcharge on each felony conviction because that violates the prohibition against ex post facto laws. Instead, the defendant may only be subject to a single discretionary surcharge of $250.

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State v. Garett T. Elward, 2014AP2569-CR, District 2, 5/20/15 (recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs)

Defendants who committed a misdemeanor offense before April 1, 2015 January 1, 2014, cannot be made to pay the mandatory $200 DNA surcharge that is supposed to be imposed for each misdemeanor conviction beginning January 1, 2014, because imposition of the surcharge on that class of defendants violates the ex post facto clauses of the state and federal constitutions. [See UPDATE below regarding the date change.]

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State v. David E. Hull, 2014AP365-CR, District 3, 5/19/15 (recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs)

The recently enacted statute allowing the admission of hearsay evidence at preliminary hearings is not an unconstitutional ex post facto law because it affects only the evidence that may be admitted at the preliminary hearing and does not alter the quantum or nature of evidence necessary to convict the defendant. In addition, the court commissioner properly refused to allow Hull to call the alleged victim to testify at the preliminary hearing because the anticipated testimony was not relevant to the probable cause inquiry.

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Defendant failed to show why he would have gone to trial but for counsel’s deficient performance

May 19, 2015

State v. Shaun M. Clarmont, 2014AP1043-CR, District 3, 5/19/15 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) Even if trial counsel failed to investigate a defense to the charge to which Clarmont pled, Clarmont has not shown why he would have gone to trial and face the possibility of multiple convictions, […]

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Restitution appropriate because defendant’s conduct during entire incident showed causal connection between crime and victim’s damages

May 19, 2015

State v. Chaz L. Brown, 2014AP1848-CR, District 3, 5/19/15 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) A “midsummer night’s attempt at self-help debt collection” (¶2) led to Brown being charged with disorderly conduct and battery. He was acquitted of the battery charges based on his self-defense claim, but he […]

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SCOTUS: Dismissal being appealed still counts as a PLRA “strike”

May 18, 2015

Coleman v. Tollefson, USSC No. 13-1333, 2015 WL 2340838 (May 18, 2015), affirming Coleman v. Tollefson, 733 F.3d 175 (6th Cir. 2013); Scotusblog page (includes links to briefs and commentary) Ordinarily, an indigent litigant may proceed in forma pauperis (IFP), which allows the litigant to file a civil action without paying fees or certain […]

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SCOTUS: Firearm owner convicted of felony may transfer firearms without violating ban on possession

May 18, 2015

Henderson v. United States, USSC No. 13-1487, 2015 WL 2340840 (May 18, 2015), reversing  United States v. Henderson, Case No. 12-14628, 2014 WL 292169 (11th Cir. 2014) (unreported); Scotusblog page (includes links to briefs and commentary) The Supreme Court unanimously holds that a defendant convicted of a felony retains “a naked right […]

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SCOTUS: Officers entitled to qualified immunity for entry into home of armed, violent, mentally ill subject

May 18, 2015

City and County of San Francisco, et al. v. Teresa Sheehan, USSC No. 13-1412, 2015 WL 2340839 (May 18, 2015), certiorari dismissed in part, and reversing in part and remanding Sheehan v. City and County of San Francisco, 743 F.3d 1211 (9th Cir. 2014); Scotusblog page (includes links to briefs and commentary) Because there was no […]

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Guest Post: Shelley Fite on 7th Circuit decision that Machner doesn’t apply to IAC claims in federal court

May 15, 2015

Curtis J. Pidgeon v. Judy P. Smith, Warden, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals No. 14-3158, 5/13/15 In a federal habeas case, the Seventh Circuit has confirmed that the Machner hearing, like New Glarus beer and squeaky cheese curds, is a Wisconsin anomaly. State v. Machner, 92 Wis. 2d 797 (Ct. […]

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Links to the latest legal news!

May 15, 2015

“Recommended Reading on Prosecutorial Misconduct.” Boy those DAs get away with a lot! Click here for more. Are underpaid public defenders happier than their wealthy counterparts in private practice? This article says “yes.” Check out UWLS Professor Cecilia Klingele’s new article on deterrence-based correctional programs here. “Anatomy of a Contempt: […]

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