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Sentencing – Factors – Exercising Right to Trial/Evaluation of Defendant’s Testimony

State v. Garren G. Gribble, 2001 WI App 227, PFR filed
For Gribble: Charles B. Vetzner, SPD, Madison Appellate

Issue: Whether the sentencing court punished the defendant for going to trial and by stressing the perceived falsity of the theory of defense.

Holding:

¶66. We do not agree with Gribble’s claim that the trial court was punishing him for “defense counsel’s lawful efforts to support the defendant’s claim of innocence.” We are satisfied from our review of the record that the court properly considered Gribble’s testimony, and considered the defense strategy only insofar as it was based on that testimony, which was within Gribble’s control and which the court believed to be false. This is properly within a court’s sentencing discretion. When determining a sentence, the sentencing court has the authority to evaluate a defendant’s testimony, determine if it contained “willful and material falsehoods,” and assess it in light of all other knowledge gained about the defendant. United States v. Grayson, 438 U.S. 41, 55 (1978). We are satisfied from our review of the record that the court did not consider an improper factor and that it otherwise properly exercised its discretion when imposing its sentence on Gribble.

 

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