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1. Appeals

State v. Donald P. Coughlin, 2019AP1876-CR, District 4, 3/4/21 (not recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs) In 2010 Coughlin was charged with over 20 counts of having sexual contact with three different children during various periods between 1989 and 1994. The court of appeals holds the evidence was insufficient to convict him of the… Read more

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State v. Greg Douglas Griswold, 2020AP1598, District 4, 3/4/21 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) Griswold was convicted of violating § 26.12(5)(b) by starting a fire in an “extensive forest protection area” without a permit. The statute excepts fires started for warmth, and Griswold claimed that’s what he was doing. When evidence supports… Read more

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State v. Timothy D. Wright, 2020AP1578, 2/25/2021, District 4 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) Wright worked at Christmas Mountain. Over the course of a couple of months he allegedly directed several racist and threatening rants at colleagues, including threats to kill some of them. A supervisor eventually called the police, and… Read more

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State v. Decarlos K. Chambers, 2019AP411-CR, 2021 WI 13, 2/23/21, affirming a per curiam court of appeals opinion,  case activity (including briefs) SCOTUS recently held that when a client expressly asserts that he wants to maintain his innocence, defense counsel cannot override that objective and concede guilt. If counsel does, a structural error occurs, and… Read more

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State v. Marshun Dante Jackson, 2019AP2091, 2/17/21, District 3 (not recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs) Jackson pleaded to being part of a conspiracy to commit fraud (passing bad checks) against a bank in Dunn County. Then he was charged in St. Croix county with committing fraud against a bank there (initially this was… Read more

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Adams County v. D.R.D., 2020AP1426, 1/28/21, District 4; case activity This appeal posed a simple question about due process in a Chapter 51 commitment proceeding. Lessard v. Schmidt, 349 F. Supp. 1078 (E.D. Wis. 1972) held that the 14th Amendment requires the county to give a person sufficient notice of the legal standard under which… Read more

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State v. Mercado, 2021 WI 2, 1/20/21, reversing a published court of appeals decision; case activity (including briefs) Mercado stood trial for sexual assault of three young girls. A video of each girl’s forensic interview was played for the jury pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 908.08. Mercado contends that none of the videos were properly… Read more

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COA holds other acts issue forfeited

State v. James Lee Ballentine, 2019AP1597, 1/20/21, District 2 (not recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs) Ballentine stood trial for three counts of delivering drugs. The charges arose from controlled buys; James was the informant and buyer. Ballentine’s defense was that James–seeking mitigation in his own drug charges–had framed Ballentine. Ballentine’s theory was that… Read more

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