A unanimous supreme court holds that lifetime GPS monitoring is not punishment, so a judge doesn’t have to advise a defendant that he or she is pleading to a crime that will require lifetime monitoring.
As a threshold matter, the court has to decide the proper test for determining whether a consequence of a conviction is a “punishment” that a defendant must be informed of before he enters a plea of guilty or no contest. The court holds that the proper test in this context is the “intent-effects” test, which asks, first, whether the statute’s intent or primary purpose is punishment, and, second, whether the effects of the statute are punitive as opposed to regulatory. (¶¶30-35). The effects part of the test is determined by applying seven (!) more factors, which are listed here.
The court fudges the actual formulation of the “intent-effects” test by implying both questions are to be asked in all cases. But if the inquiry about the statute’s intent or primary purpose reveals it is punitive, the inquiry is over; the second inquiry, about the statute’s effects, is only relevant when it isn’t clear the legislature intended to impose punishment. Cf., e.g., Hudson v. United States, 522 U.S. 93, 99 (1997); State v. Scruggs, 2017 WI 15, ¶¶16-17, 373 Wis. 2d 312, 891 N.W.2d 786.
Applying the test to lifetime GPS monitoring, the court agrees with the court of appeals that § 301.48 was not intended to be punitive (¶¶37-48) and, using the seven applicable factors, that its effects are not punitive, either (¶¶49-61).