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Presentence Report — Role in Sentencing — In General

State v. David W. Suchocki, 208 Wis. 2d 509, 561 N.W.2d 332 (Ct. App. 1997)
For Suchocki: Martha A. Askins, SPD, Madison Appellate

Issue/Holding:

Our supreme court has acknowledged the importance of the PSI to the sentencing process. See State v. McQuay, 154 Wis.2d 116, 130-31, 452 N.W.2d 377, 383 (1990). The integrity of the sentencing process demands that the report be accurate, reliable and above all, objective. See Perez, 170 Wis.2d at 140-41, 487 N.W.2d at 633-34. The Division of Corrections does not function as an agent of either the State or the defense in fulfilling its role as an agent of the trial court in gathering information relating to a specific defendant. Id. at 140-41, 487 N.W.2d at 634. Because of the requirement that the report be objective, it is of vital importance that the author of the report be neutral and independent from either the prosecutionor the defense. McQuay, 154 Wis.2d at 130-31, 452 N.W.2d at 383; Perez, 170 Wis.2d at 140, 487 N.W.2d at 634.

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