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Newly discovered evidence; Juror bias

State v. Daniel Ryan Curry, 2012AP515-CR, District 1, 12/27/12

Court of appeals decision (not recommended for publication); case activity

Newly discovered evidence

Defendant not entitled to new trial based on potentially exculpatory testimony of two witnesses, because the witnesses were known to him before trial. The two witnesses were the son and nephew of a defense witness named Rivera. Statements made by Curry and Rivera and contained in police reports, as well as Rivera’s trial testimony, show Curry knew the boys were eyewitnesses to the incident. ¶¶12-13. Curry’s argument that Rivera prevented him from talking to the boys also rejected, as that “ignores his subpoena power” and is belied by the evidence establishing that Curry and Rivera were friends and that Rivera was cooperative with the defense, ¶14. Standard for newly discovered evidence set forth, citing State v. Plude, 2008 WI 58, ¶32, 310 Wis. 2d 28, 750 N.W.2d 42.

Juror bias – failure of juror to disclose prior convictions

That a juror failed to disclose his prior convictions does not by itself establish objective bias, where Curry offered no plausible reasons as to why juror was biased against him:

¶18 …. Withholding information about prior convictions, by itself, is not evidence of juror bias.  Nor do prior convictions, by themselves, constitute such evidence of bias.  Curry simply requests, without support, an evidentiary hearing to “[inquire] into [juror number twelve’s] state of mind.” We cannot conclude that juror number twelve’s prior convictions made it more probable than not that he was biased against Curry.  In fact, juror number twelve’s experience as a defendant may even have made him sympathetic towards Curry.  Curry has not met his burden of showing that a reasonable person in juror number twelve’s position could not be impartial.

Standard for establishing objective juror bias noted, ¶¶15-16, citing State v. Faucher, 227 Wis. 2d 700, 596 N.W.2d 770 (1999).

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