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Welcome Back!

Much has changed since that last time you read On Point.  Defying all expectations, long-time beat reporter Bill Tyroler has actually retired.  After writing some 5,000 case summaries and On Point posts between 1995 and 2013, who could blame him?

Fear not, staff and private bar attorneys.  The State Public Defender will continue to help you defend your clients through updates on indigent defense law.  But we’ve made a few changes:

New Authors.  Jefren Olsen (SPD Madison Appellate) will write most of the On Point posts, and Colleen Ball (Milwaukee Appellate) will assist.  You did not receive On Point updates while the site has been in “maintenance mode,” but rest assured that we continued to summarize, analyze, and post cases during the hiatus.  They’re ready and waiting for you to read.

New Archive.  We’re merging “case summaries” into On Point, which means it will be easier than ever to get your fill of Bill’s summaries (and now Jefren’s too).  Our new Archive page is a detailed outline of legal issues.  Each topic is a hyperlink.  Click the link and it will pull up the posts/summaries relating to that topic, presenting them in chronological order (most recent first).  You might want  to scroll through the outline a few times to familiarize yourself with the taxonomy.  The integration of “case summaries” and On Point is over half way done.  Click here to see which “case summaries” have been merged into On Point and which remain on the “to do” list.

Issue Tracking.  If you are wondering which cases and issues relating to your practice are pending in the Supreme Court of Wisconsin (SCOW) or the Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS), we’ve got it covered.  Visit the “Pending in SCOW” and “Pending in SCOTUS” pages.

SCOW watching.  Plus, we have some new features for those of you who appear in (or just enjoy watching) SCOW.  The calendar to the right is a simple way to see when indigent defense cases will be argued, decisions will be released, and the next petitions conference will occur.  Click on the blue date and the event for details.  No more drilling down on the WSCCA website for that information.  In addition, the SCOW Stats page provides historical statistical information on questions like:  How often do pairs of justices vote together?  How long, on average, does it take each justice to issue an opinion?  How many opinions does each justice write?  You will find those answers on SCOW Stats.

On Point is a work in progress.  If you have comments or suggestions, please don’t hesitate to email them to ballc@opd.wi.gov and/or olsenj@opd.wi.gov.

Thank you for your patience.  We hope that you continue to read On Point and encourage your colleagues to subscribe too.

P.S.  We’re counting down the days to the 50th anniversary of Gideon v. Wainwright.  Watch for a special guest post on March 18th!

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