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2. Bias/disqualification

State v. Jeffrey P. Lepsch, 2017 WI 27, 3/31/17, affirming a per curiam court of appeals opinion, case activity (including briefs) This appeal primarily concerns whether trial counsel was ineffective for failing to: (a) object to the seating of biased jurors, and (b) ensure that the trial court properly administered the oath to the venire panel… Read More

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Miguel Angel Peña-Rodriguez v. Colorado, USSC No. 15-606, 2017 WL 855760 (March 6, 2017), reversing Peña-Rodriguez v. People, 350 P.3d 287 (Colo. 2015); Scotusblog page Every state and federal jurisdiction has some version of the "no-impeachment rule," which, after a verdict is received, bars an aggrieved party from presenting testimony by jurors regarding the jury's… Read More

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SCOW to review juror bias issues

State v. Jeffrey P. Lepsch, 2015AP2813-CR, petition for review granted 5/11/16; case activity (including briefs) Issues (composed by On Point) Were one or more jurors at Lepsch's trial objectively or subjectively biased because they did not provide "unequivocal assurances" that they could set aside prior beliefs (about, e.g., the guilt of the defendant and the… Read More

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State v. Todd Brian Tobatto, 2016 WI App 28; case activity (including briefs) The news, in this otherwise run-of-the-mill case, is the standard of review. Tobatto raises an ineffective assistance claim rooted in trial counsel's failure to strike a juror for bias. The judge who heard the postconviction motion was not the judge who ran the trial… Read More

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Can courtroom prejudice be proved?

The Marshall Project offers an interesting analysis of Foster v. Chatman, a case that SCOTUS on Monday. Hopefully, the decision will give defense lawyers betters tools for proving that the prosecution engaged in racial discrimination during jury selection. Click here for the Marshall Project's analysis. And here is SCOTUSblog's report on the actual argument… Read More

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State v. Clifton Robinson, 2014AP1575-CR, 3/31/15, District 1 (not recommended for publication); click here for briefs and docket The court of appeals here rejects a barrage of challenges to Robinson's conviction for criminal damage to property and armed robbery with use of force--everything from a Batson challenge, to severance issues, to the sufficiency of evidence… Read More

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State v. Dawn M. Hackel, 2014AP1765-CR, District 4, 3/19/15 (one-judge decision; ineligible for publication); case activity (including briefs) During voir dire at an OWI trial, a sheriff's deputy/prospective juror said he had arrested drunk drivers, testified in drunk driving cases, and said that based on his professional training and occupation the State had sufficient evince to convict… Read More

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Warger v. Shauers, USSC No. 13-517, 2014 WL 6885952 (December 9, 2014), affirming Warger v. Shauers, 721 F.3d 606 (8th Cir. 2013); Scotusblog page (includes links to briefs and commentary) Resolving an issue that had split some federal circuit courts, the Supreme Court unanimously holds that Federal Rule of Evidence 606(b) precludes a party seeking a… Read More

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