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Identification Case Analysis

The decision fails to provide much guidance, either for cases pending now in which the defendant seeks to present expert testimony, or for older cases in which decisions not to admit evidence attacking eyewitness identifications are being reviewed. The court ...

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Court denies new trial in ID case

What the court held Case: State v. Shomberg, No. 2004AP630-CR. Issue: Was it an abuse of discretion, in 2002, for the trial court to refuse to allow a defendant to present expert testimony that eyewitness identifications re unreliable? Did the ...

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Sanctions Case Analysis

The court’s decision — that sanctions can only be imposed under 28 U.S.C. 1927 based on an attorney’s conduct during litigation — is the correct one, for the reasons given by the court. Without “proceedings” and a “case” pending, there ...

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No sanctions for conduct prelitigation

What the court held Case: Bender v. Freed, No. 04-4169. Issue: Can sanctions be imposed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. 1927 for conduct occurring prior to the commencement of litigation? Holding: No. Without a case pending, there are no "proceedings" to ...

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Guilty plea by phone overturned

What the court held Case: Van Patten v. Deppisch, No. 04-1276 Issue: Can a guilty or no contest plea be entered with the defense attorney appearing by speakerphone? Holding: No. The right to counsel requires that the attorney be physically ...

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Takings Case Analysis

The court states that the case is distinguishable from Dotty Dumpling’s Dowry, Ltd., v. Community Development Authority of the City of Madison, 2002 WI App 200, 257 Wis.2d 377, 651 N.W.2d 1, but it is difficult to see how. Distinguishing ...

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Condemnor must offer comparable property

What the court held Case: City of Janesville v. CC Midwest, Inc., No. 2004AP267 Issue: If no comparable replacement properties exist for a condemned business, can the condemnor obtain a writ of assistance to remove the owner? Holding: No. The ...

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Basting, Carnell seek State Bar seat

“Simply throwing money at the problem is not the answer. We need strong leadership to take the Bar in the direction necessary to see to it that citizens aren’t denied justice simply because they are poor.” Thomas J. Basting Sr. ...

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Right to Counsel Case Analysis

It is imperative that trial courts and attorneys know that a guilty or no contest plea cannot be conducted with defense counsel appearing only by speakerphone, and that doing so is not subject to harmless error analysis, but is prejudicial ...

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Plaintiff Case Analysis

Even though the plaintiff prevailed on the appeal, the decision is a mixed bag, providing both favorable and unfavorable precedent to both plaintiffs and defendants. For plaintiffs, the court did not merely reject the district court’s conclusion that a plaintiff’s ...

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Confession Case Analysis

Sornberger v. City of Knoxville, Illinois, No. 04-3614 The decision is noteworthy for a number of reasons. First, the discussion of whether there was probable cause for Scott Sornberger’s arrest, and whether the officers are entitled to qualified immunity, suggests ...

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Court rules on coerced confession suit

What the court held Case: Sornberger v. City of Knoxville, Illinois, No. 04-3614 Issue: Where a suspect bore no resemblance to the description given by witnesses to a bank robbery, did his arrest lack probable cause? Where a criminal court ...

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Strikebreakers Case Analysis

The decision effectively holds that Wisconsin’s ban on the employment of strikebreakers — sec. 103.545 — is preempted by federal law, as well. Section 103.545(2) provides, “No employer may knowingly employ or contract with another to employ any strikebreaker to ...

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Federal law trumps strikebreakers law

What the court held Case: 520 South Michigan Ave. Associates, Ltd. v. Devine, No. 05-2479. Issue: Can a state ban the employment of strikebreakers? Holding: No. Federal law preempts state labor law. The Seventh Circuit held on Jan. 10 that ...

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Work Product Case Analysis

The decision is of particular significance in Wisconsin, although this case arises from Illinois’ courts. In the majority of jurisdictions, it is unlikely that a dispute such as this would even arise, because attorneys are not allowed to assert the ...

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Sanction against firm reversed

What the court held Case: Hobley v. Burge, No. 05-1367 Issue: Can a law firm be sanctioned for not producing documents, when the firm is not a party to the proceedings, and was never subpoenaed or ordered to produce them? ...

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Dane County residents have day in court

Chief Judge Michael Nowakowski thanked all the people involved with making the project a success. Court visitors will be able to use a touch screen computer in the lobby to determine where they are supposed to be. Judge Sarah O’Brien ...

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Guidelines Case Analysis

This opinion is probably the most thorough, post-Booker, to consider the various issues concerning discretionary departures. Previous decisions, cited by the court for support, address narrow issues only. The decision thus makes a good blueprint for any attorney working on ...

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Amendment does not affect reasonableness

What the court held Case: U.S. v. Vaughn, No. 05-1518. Issue: Is a defendant’s sentence unreasonable where it is based on an amendment to the guidelines, and most of the defendant’s conduct occurred before the amendment? Holding: No. The amended ...

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Consent Case Analysis

Although the officers’ conduct in this case appears to be sound police work under the circumstances known to them at the time, and the reasoning appears to be common sense, the decision may pave the way for abusive police conduct ...

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Arbitration Case Analysis

Even though the court held the provision in question valid under Wisconsin law, attorneys would be wise to avoid using similar provisions in the future. Although it is clear that such disputes must be submitted to an accountant, numerous questions ...

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Agreement to arbitrate upheld

What the court held Case: Omni Tech Corp. v. MPC Solutions Sales, LLC, No. 04-4340. Issue: Where a purchase agreement provided that disputes were to be submitted to an accounting firm, "acting as experts and not as arbitrators," but also ...

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Limitations Case Analysis

The majority states that its holding is limited by the defense of laches, but it is difficult to see how. The law governing the elements is as follows: “For laches to arise, there must be unreasonable delay, lack of knowledge ...

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Court finds no statute of limitations

What the court held Case: Oaferman v. St. Clare Healthcare Foundation, Inc., No. 2003AP1307. Issue: What is the statute of limitations to apply to a medical malpractice action brought on behalf of a developmentally disabled child? Holding: The Legislature has ...

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Supreme Court hears patent tying case

The U.S. Supreme Court recently heard oral arguments in a printer toner case that has broad ramifications for both antitrust and intellectual property law. Illinois Tool Works, a producer of inkjet printheads and inks, holds several patents covering printhead technology. ...

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