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Probation Modification – Necessity of Postconviction Motion

State v. Bernard G. Fearing, 2000 WI App 229, 239 Wis.2d 105, 619 N.W.2d 115
For Fearing: Patrick J. Stangl

Issue: Whether a defendant must first raise a challenge to a condition of probation in a trial-level postconviction motion before seeking relief in the appellate court.

Holding: Even if the rule that review of a sentence requires a trial-level motion applies to review of a condition of probation, “there are compelling reasons to review Fearing’s challenge,” notwithstanding absence of such motion, namely significant issues on undisputed facts respecting trial court authority to define certain probationary conditions. ¶7.

The court suggests, but doesn’t distinctly hold, that rule requiring trial-level challenge to sentence does not apply to review of probation, ¶8.

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