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Criminal Defense Archives

WI woman's 'shaken baby syndrome' conviction under scrutiny

There is a good reason why the accused must be presumed innocent until proven guilty “beyond a reasonable doubt.” In any criminal case where hard evidence is in short supply, there could be a number of narratives constructed to explain the information that is known. But just because an alleged crime could have occurred in a certain way, this alone is not a reason to conclude that it did.

Botched criminal investigations and the damage they can cause

Cold cases are frustrating for law enforcement agencies and can be devastating to the families of victims. When a missing-persons case goes unsolved, for example, the family may suffer what has been called “dubious grief.” Until they see a body, they may not be able to accept that their loved one is gone.

Shoplifting case shows why all defendants need a good attorney

If you have been arrested and/or charged with a crime, you have a lot to lose. Many defendants make the mistake of thinking they don’t need an experienced criminal defense attorney because the charges against them are relatively small.

Milwaukee trying program to help convicted offenders reintegrate

Criminal justice reform is perhaps one of the most pressing and difficult issues of our time. Despite being the “land of the free,” the United States incarcerates more of its own citizens than any other country in the world. This is not only a problem in its own right; it also contributes to a destructive pattern often seen among imprisoned offenders.

Wisconsin man seeks compensation for being imprisoned too long

Many of our recent posts have discussed wrongful imprisonment. In many cases, individuals are wrongfully imprisoned because they were mistakenly convicted of crimes they did not commit. But there are other cases in which prisoners who have been legitimately convicted are mistakenly imprisoned for longer than what their sentence dictates.

The problem of wrongful conviction in America: Part II

In our post last week, we began a discussion about the high number of exonerations in the U.S. in recent years. In 2013, for example, at least 87 people in the United States were exonerated, many of whom had spent years or even decades in prison for crimes they didn’t commit. There has been at least one wrongfully convicted individual exonerated here in Wisconsin within the past couple years.

The problem of wrongful conviction in America: Part I

How do you compensate someone for the loss of years of their life? How do you compensate someone after wrongfully taking away their freedom? How do you compensate someone after destroying their reputation by erroneously accusing them of a horrible crime? In short, what compensation would possibly be appropriate for individuals who have been wrongfully convicted and wrongfully imprisoned?

Wisconsin police take 5 people into custody for drugs

The Jackson County Emergency Response Team teamed up with a La Crosse County investigator and Metropolitan Enforcement Group investigator to carry out a drug warrant on Dec. 17 at around 11:25 p.m. Authorities say that they secured a search warrant after receiving tips that a residence where a child lived was being used to make and distribute methamphetamine.

Sixth Amendment right trumps dead woman's letter accusing husband

A Wisconsin judge ruled that a man was not correctly tried when he was convicted of killing his wife on the strength of a letter she wrote to a neighbor. The widower was sent to prison for life in 2008 for the poisoning homicide, which seemed to be the fate his wife was expressing fear about in the letter claiming that her husband wanted her dead. That implication led to his being taken into custody on murder charges in 2002, four years after the woman died. In the most recent action, the judge vacated that trial result because the man had no opportunity to confront his accuser.

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