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Certiorari – Judicial Act – Review Limited to Determining Tribunal’s Jurisdiction

State v. Christopher Swiams, 2004 WI App 217, District 1, 10/19/04 (published); case activity

Issue/Holding:

¶8. … The State contends, however, that reconfinement orders may only be reviewed via common-law certiorari and not under Wis. Stat. Rule 809.30. It relies on State v. Bridges, 195 Wis. 2d 254, 536 N.W.2d 153 (Ct. App. 1995) (per curiam).

¶10. In ruling that Bridges could seek review via common-law certiorari, Bridges noted that certiorari “may be used to review judicial decisions.” Id., 195 Wis. 2d at 258, 536 N.W.2d at 154. Bridges cited State ex rel. Department of Health and Social Services v. Circuit Court, 84 Wis. 2d 707, 711-712, 267 N.W.2d 373, 375 (1978) (per curiam), in support. Bridges, 195 Wis. 2d at 258, 536 N.W.2d at 154. Department of Health and Social Services recognized, however, in haec verba and by a decision upon which it relied, that certiorari review of a judicial act determines only whether the judicial tribunal was acting within its jurisdiction. Id., 84 Wis. 2d at 711-712, 267 N.W.2d at 375; see Krueger v. Cone, 106 Wis. 522, 523-524, 81 N.W. 984, 985 (1900) (cited by Department of Health & Soc. Servs., 84 Wis. 2d at 712, 267 N.W.2d at 375); Barnes v. Schmitz, 44 Wis. 482, 482 (1878) (cited by Krueger, 106 Wis. at 524, 81 N.W. at 985); see also State v. Gibbons, 71 Wis. 2d 94, 99-100, 237 N.W.2d 33, 35-36 (1976) (certiorari proper mechanism to review whether trial court had jurisdiction to impose conditions on a sentence to a state prison).

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