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Sentencing – Objective Bias

WI Court of Appeals – District III

Case Name: State of Wisconsin v. Jason A. Marcotte

Case No.: 2019AP695-CR

Officials: Stark, P.J., Hruz and Seidl, JJ.

Focus: Sentencing – Objective Bias

Jason Marcotte appeals a judgment convicting him of one count of delivering three grams or less of amphetamine, as a party to the crime. He also appeals an order denying his postconviction motion for resentencing. Marcotte argues the judge who sentenced him after the revocation of his probation was objectively biased for two reasons. First, he contends the judge made multiple comments indicating that he had prejudged Marcotte’s sentence. Second, Marcotte argues the judge was objectively biased as a result of his dual role as the sentencing judge in this case and as the presiding judge in a drug court program that Marcotte failed to complete. We agree with Marcotte that these factors, taken together, are sufficient to demonstrate objective bias. We therefore reverse and remand for Marcotte to be resentenced by a different judge.

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Derek A Hawkins is trademark corporate counsel for Harley-Davidson. Hawkins oversees the prosecution and maintenance of the Harley-Davidson’s international trademark portfolio in emerging markets.

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