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3. Denial of confrontation

This new law review article by Daniel Epps examine the subject in depth. Consider this excerpt from the abstract: Judges and commentators sharply disagree about which (and even whether) constitutional errors can be harmless, how to conduct harmless-error when it  analysis applies, and, most fundamentally, what harmless constitutional error even is-what source of law generates… Read More

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State v. Gary Abdullah Salaam, 2014AP2666-CR & 2667-CR, 9/13/2016, District 1 (Not recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs) Salaam raises four claims challenging his convictions, at jury trial, of recklessly endangering safety, being a felon in possession of a firearm, and three counts of witness intimidation. The court affirms as to the first two… Read More

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How to beat the “harmless error” rap

For the 2015 SPD conference, Judge Sankovitz and Attorneys Rob Henak and Melinda Swartz prepared an excellent outline on a problem that plagues many defense lawyers on appeal.  They have a great issue. They win it, but then the court of appeals or supreme court finds the error harmless.  This detailed, well-researched outline walks you… Read More

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Mark D. Jensen v. Marc Clements, 7th Circuit Court of Appeals No. 14-1380, 9/8/15, affirming Jensen v. Schwochert, No. 11-C-0803 (E.D. Wis. Dec. 18, 2013) At Jensen’s trial for the murder of his wife Julie the State introduced Julie’s handwritten letter to the police, written two weeks before her death, in which she wrote she would never… Read More

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State v. John M. Navigato, 2012AP2108-CR, District 2, 4/9/14; court of appeals decision (not recommended for publication); case activity State v. Teddy W. Bieker, 2012AP2693-CR, District 2, 4/9/14; court of appeals decision (not recommended for publication); case activity The circuit court, relying on the district attorney’s assertion of the so-called “interlocking confessions” doctrine, denied Navigato’s… Read More

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Mark D. Jensen v. James Schwochert, No. 11-C-0803 (E.D. Wis. Dec. 18, 2013) Judge William Griesbach of the U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Wisconsin, has ordered a new trial for Mark Jensen, who was convicted of killing his wife Julie based in part on the use of oral and written statements she made before… Read More

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State v. Mark D. Jensen, 2011 WI App 3; prior history: 2007 WI 26; for Jensen: Terry W. Rose, Christopher William Rose, Michael D. Cicchini; case activity; (Jensen BiC not posted); State Resp.; Jensen Reply Confrontation – Generally The Confrontation Clause regulates testimonial statements only, such that nontestimonial statements are excludable only under hearsay and other evidence-rule ¶¶22-26, citing Giles v… Read More

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decision below: unpublished; prior On Point post; for Rhodes: John J. Grau Issue (from Table of Pending Cases): Whether a criminal defendant’s constitutional right to confront a witness in cross-examination was infringed, and, if so, whether the infringement was harmless error. Homicide case, tried on State’s theory Rhodes had motive to kill victim for beating Rhodes’… Read More

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