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Defense win! SCOW unanimously holds towing and search of car not valid community caretaker action

State v. Alfonso Lorenzo Brooks, 2020 WI 60, 6/25/20, reversing a per curiam court of appeals decision, 2018AP1774, case activity (including briefs) The police stopped Brooks for speeding in Milwaukee. Specifically, they pulled him over to the side of a residential/commercial road. The police quickly learned Brooks had a suspended license and was a convicted […]

June 28, 2020

Defense win! Life sentence is “substantially higher” than 25-year sentence for Bangert purposes

State v. Russell L. Wilson, 2019AP49, 6/23/20, District 3 (not recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs) Wilson was charged with repeated second-degree sexual assault of a child under Wis. Stats. §§ 948.02(2) and 948.025(1)(e). That’s a Class C felony carrying a max of 25 in and 15 out. But the state alleged that he […]

COA: Defendant was competent to self-represent despite claimed hallucinations

State v. Chad W. Kessler, 2019AP524, 6/23/20, District 3 (not recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs) Kessler went to trial on several counts, the most serious of which was burglary. Five days before trial was to begin, he asked to represent himself with his prior counsel as standby. The court granted the request after […]

COA upholds trial court’s rulings in OWI-first

County of Milwaukee v. Christann Spannraft, 2018AP1553 & 1554, 6/23/20, District 1 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including respondent’s brief) This is a pro se appeal of an OWI-1st conviction. Spannraft raises three claims, all of which are rejected.

SCOW continues Jensen saga, grants state’s rather thin petition

State v. Mark D. Jensen, 2018AP1952, petition for review of a summary court of appeals order granted 6/16/20; case activity Usually we do to the issues presented first. Here, they’re pretty insubstantial, so let’s just say what’s going on: the supreme court has intervened to (potentially) save a manifestly unconstitutional (and you don’t have to […]

June 24, 2020

COA attempts to clarify Chapter 51 recommitment standard

Winnebago County v. S.H., 2019AP2277-FT, 6/17/20, District 2 (recommended for publication); case activity The court of appeals rarely publishes opinions in “fast track” cases. It took that unusual step here. The opinion strives to show the type of evidence that is sufficient for a recommitment even though the mentally ill person has taken all of […]

June 21, 2020

COA rejects defendant’s claim that he thought counsel decided whether to accept or reject plea offer

State v. Nathaniel Lee Mattson, 2019AP201-CR, 6/16/20, District 3 (1-judge opinion, ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) Mattson pled guilty to domestic battery and disorderly conduct and moved to withdraw his pleas after sentencing. Argued that he did not realize that the decision as to whether accept a plea or go to trial was […]

Who needs examiner reports 48 hours before a Chapter 51 hearing?

Fond du Lac v. S.N.W., 2019AP2073, 6/17/20, District 2 (1-judge opinion, ineligible for publication); case activity We detect the unmistakable odor of SCOW bait. One of two court appointed medical experts failed to submit his examiner’s report within 48 hours before the final hearing for an original commitment of a prisoner. S.N.W. argued that this […]

June 18, 2020

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