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Sentencing Review – Factors – Seriousness of Offense – Weight Left to Trial Court

State v. Corey E. Young, 2009 WI App 22, PFR filed 1/7/09
For Young: Jeffrey W. Jensen

Issue/Holding: The trial court, in sentencing for first-degree intentional homicide, sufficiently explained why it was assigning extended supervision eligibility of 50 years’ confinement (rather than the 40 recommended by the State). Weight given each sentencing factor is committed to the trial court’s discretion, ¶24; the sentencing court in this instance reached its conclusion only after weighing a number of sentencing factors, ¶26; the court clarified on postconviction motion that it had “placed substantial weight on the ‘absolute egregiousness’ of the crime,” and “it is well within the purview of the trial court’s discretion to assign more weight to one sentencing factor over another,” ¶28.

¶29      Furthermore, even though the trial court is required to explain its sentencing rationale on the record, it is not required to explain the mathematical breakdown of how each sentencing factor relates to the term of confinement. See State v. Fisher, 2005 WI App 175, ¶¶21-22, 285 Wis. 2d 433, 702 N.W.2d 56. Additionally, where the trial court fails to provide precise reasons for its sentencing determination on the record, it is the duty of the appellate court “‘to search the record to determine whether in the exercise of proper discretion the sentence imposed can be sustained.’” Taylor, 289 Wis. 2d 34, ¶21 (quoting McCleary, 49 Wis. 2d at 276). Accordingly, we will not interfere with the discretion of the trial court in passing its sentence and we hold that the sentence is not clearly erroneous.


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