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A. Judicial bias

State v. Deshawn J. Driver, 2018AP870-CR, District 1, 2/26/19 (not recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs) At the start of Driver’s restitution hearing, before hearing testimony from any witness, the judge told defense counsel on the record that the victim’s word “is more credible than your client’s words[.]” Later in the hearing, when defense… Read More

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Timothy W. Miller v. Angela L. Carroll, 2017AP2132, District 3, 2/20/19 (recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs) After a contested hearing between Miller and Carroll about custody and physical placement of their child, and before issuing a decision, the circuit judge accepted a Facebook “friend” request from Carroll. Miller argued the circuit court demonstrated… Read More

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State v. Emerson D. Lamb, 2017AP1430-CR, District 3, 9/25/18 (not recommended for publication); case activity (including briefs) The sentencing judge made comments at Lamb’s sentencing before it had heard any sentencing arguments from the parties, and those comments showed a serious risk that the court had prejudged Lamb’s sentence. Accordingly, the judge was objectively biased and Lamb is… Read More

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Dane County DHS v. C.B., 2018AP38 & 39, 4/9/2018, District 4 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) Yes, that headline is correct: The circuit court did not terminate C.B.’s parental rights, and the court of appeals rejects the County’s challenges to the circuit court’s decision (and admonishes the County’s lawyer for an… Read More

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State v. Charles A. Page, 2017AP165-CR, District 4, 10/12/17 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) Page claims that the circuit court erred when it classified evidence he sought to introduce as “other acts” evidence and then excluded the evidence because Page hadn’t filed a timely pretrial motion to admit the evidence. He also contends the circuit… Read More

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State v. Jesse T. Riemer, 2017 WI App 48; case activity (including briefs) In what appears to be the first case of its kind, the court of appeals addresses the standard for reviewing the sentence imposed on a member of the Wisconsin National Guard after he was convicted of various offenses. Concluding it should apply the same… Read More

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SCOTUS reaffirms objective bias standard

Michael Damon Rippo v. Renee Baker, Warden, USSC No. 16-6316, 2017 WL 855913 (March 6, 2017) (per curiam), reversing and remanding Rippo v. State, 368 P.3d 729 (Nev. 2016); Scotusblog page In this per curiam decision, the Supreme Court holds the lower court erred in demanding a defendant show actual bias to satisfy his claim that… Read More

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Williams v. Pennsylvania, USSC No. 15-5040, 2016 WL 3189529 (June 9, 2016), vacating and remanding Commonwealth v. Williams, 105 A.3d 1234 (Pa. 2014); Scotusblog page (includes links to briefs and commentary) When he was district attorney of Philadelphia, Ronald Castille authorized a subordinate to seek a death sentence in Terrance Williams’s murder trial. Thirty years later… Read More

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