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Tag: criminal procedure

Appeal

If a defendant is convicted he may appeal his conviction by filing a Motion for Post-Conviction Relief with the trial court, or by filing an appeal directly with the Court of Appeals.  The conviction will be either reversed or upheld. When a conviction is reversed, a new trial will be held unless the State decides…

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Sentencing

Sentencing: When you learn what, if any, punishment you’ll receive. If the defendant enters a plea or is found guilty at trial, the actual punishment is determined by the judge at a sentencing hearing. The judge is required to consider the severity of the offense, the character of the defendant, and the need to protect…

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Court Trial

Court trials in Wisconsin In certain circumstances the defense will conduct a trial without a jury.  A court trial involves the judge making all decisions in the case, including what evidence is relevant and whether the defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.  Each side presents its case to the judge, just as they would…

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Jury Trial

Jury trials in Wisconsin If you don’t settle your case through plea negotiations you have the right to a jury trial. In Wisconsin, all 12 members of the jury (potentially a jury of 6 in misdemeanor cases) must agree unanimously that you are guilty or not guilty of each element of the offense beyond a…

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Plea bargaining

Plea bargaining refers to discussions between the prosecutor and the defense attorney about reaching a resolution that ends a case short of trial. You’ll often hear of attorneys who push their clients to enter pleas too quickly.  You’ll also hear of attorneys who convince their client’s to enter a plea because they’re afraid of trial.  The fact…

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Pre-trial motions

A motion is a document filed requesting the court to make a ruling or take some other action. Motions are important tools in a criminal defense attorney’s arsenal.   The Wisconsin Supreme Court has found that an essential part of effective representation of criminal defendants is pretrial motion practice.  State v. Harper.  Sometimes lazy or unskilled defense…

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Receipt of discovery

Discovery refers to all materials/evidence the State plans to use at trial to show the defendant committed a crime.  It can also refer to materials the defense is required to give to the State.   The government is constitutionally required to disclose all discovery to the defense.  In criminal cases discovery often includes police reports,…

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Preliminary hearing / arraignment

Preliminary hearings occur in felony cases.  At the preliminary hearing, a judge/court commissioner determines whether the defendant probably committed a felony. If there isn’t probable cause, the case is dismissed.  If there is, the defendant is “bound over” and the case proceeds to trial.  Cases are rarely dismissed at this stage, but the defense can…

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Initial appearance

The initial appearance – your first court date. The initial appearance is the first time the defendant appears in court after being charged with a crime.  The defendant is given notice of what the charges are against him along with what the maximum penalties are for those crimes.  The court also sets bail at the initial…

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Criminal Procedure

The criminal justice system can be confusing, especially if you've never been charged with a crime. We agree - the criminal justice system is complex.  And that's why we believe it's important to hire a criminal defense expert from Meyer Van Severen, S.C.  Every day our criminal defense attorneys have some interaction with the justice system....CONTINUE READING