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c. Impaired judgment

Waukesha County v. L.J.M., 2020AP820, 11/4/20, District 2 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity L.J.M. (“Lisa”) appeals the extension of her commitment under ch. 51. In a thorough opinion, the court of appeals affirms, though not without pointing out deficiencies in the county’s case and the circuit court’s decision. Lisa has been committed for… Read more

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Langlade County v. D.J.W., 2020 WI 41, reversing an unpublished court of appeals opinion, 4/24/20; case activity Wisconsin’s involuntary commitment rate is higher than that of any other state–by a long shot. According to a report for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services, the annual commitment rate among states ranges from 0.23 to 43.8… Read more

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Ozaukee County v. R.T.H., 2018AP1317, 2/27/19, District 2, (1-judge opinion, ineligible for publication); case activity; Marathon County v. C.M.L., 2017AP2220, 2/26/19, District 3 (1-judge opinion, ineligible for publication); case activity These two, unrelated decisions highlight a recurring due process violation at Chapter 51 hearings. For an original commitment, the county must prove that the person… Read more

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Chippewa County v. M.M., 2017AP1325, 5/1/18, District 3, (1-judge opinion, ineligible for publication); case activity You don’t see this very often. A jury found M.M. mentally ill, a proper subject for treatment, and dangerous under §51.20(1)(a)2.c based on testimony by not 1, not 2, but 3 doctors–all of whom said that M.M.’s paranoia and conduct would… Read more

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Marathon County v. R.O., 2016AP1898-FT, 2/27/17, District 3 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity In 2016 R.O. was detained under § 51.15 after she was evicted and went to a local shelter but wasn’t able to do the paperwork to stay at the shelter. According to the two doctors who examined her while she was… Read more

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Outagamie County v. Adam B., 2015AP718, 4/12/16, District 3 (1-judge opinion; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) The circuit court neglected to specify which of the 5 statutory “dangerousness” standards in §51.20(1)(a)2.a-e supported the Ch. 51 commitment of Adam B. But that did not trouble the court of appeals. Given the “de novo” standard of… Read more

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Ozaukee County v. M.L.G., 2015AP1469-FT, 9/23/15, District 2 (1-judge opinion; ineligible for publication); case activity More specifically, the court of appeals held that the County had offered evidence sufficient to establish that MLG was dangerous under §51.20(1)(a)2.c and that he was substantially incapable of understanding his treatment options under § 51.61(1)(g)4b: [T]he County presented evidence of recent… Read more

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Walworth County DHS v. M.M.L., 2014AP2845, 7/15/15, District 2 (one-judge opinion, ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) The court of appeals affirms the involuntary commitment for M.M.L. under § 51.20(1)(a)2.c., which requires evidence of impaired judgment based on recent acts or omissions showing a substantial probability that she would physically impair or injure herself or… Read more

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