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OAR/OAS – Rescission of HTO Status

State v. Jeremy J. Hanson, 2001 WI 70, 628 N.W.2d 759
For Hanson: James B. Connell

Issue: Whether DOT rescission of a defendant’s HTO status under § 351.09 “relates back” to the date of the charged offense so as to nullify that HTO classification and render him or her ineligible for enhanced sentencing.


¶32. Given the accepted meaning of the language of § 351.09 and the legal effect attributable to ‘rescind’ and ‘rescission,’ we conclude that the effect of the Department’s recalculation of Hanson’s HTO status was an annulment and abrogation of that status from the outset of its existence. Consequently, when the circuit court sentenced Hanson, it could not properly treat him as an HTO, or for that matter as if he ever were an HTO. Hanson’s rescinded HTO status can have no legal effect and Hanson must be treated as if it never existed


¶38. As a consequence of the rescission of Hanson’s HTO status, we conclude that the circuit court could not properly impose a criminal penalty based solely upon that status. The imposition of a criminal penalty based solely upon that status would be in excess of that authorized by the legislature and must be declared void pursuant to Wis. Stat. § 971.13.

Because the record is unclear as to whether the enhanced sentence might be justifiable on some other possible basis, the matter is remanded for such a determination, ¶47.


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