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Ineffective Assistance of Counsel

WI Court of Appeals – District I

Case Name: State of Wisconsin v. Curtis James Rumsey

Case No.: 2021AP002056-CR

Officials: Brash, C.J., Dugan and White, JJ.

Focus: Ineffective Assistance of Counsel

Curtis James Rumsey, pro se, appeals his judgment of conviction for repeated sexual assault of a child, and the order denying his postconviction motion. Rumsey raises numerous claims of ineffective assistance of trial counsel relating to the testimony of several witnesses, as well as ineffective assistance of appellate counsel. Rumsey also raises a claim of prosecutorial misconduct for alleged improper vouching by the prosecutor during his closing argument, and a claim that the trial court erred by omitting an element of the crime from the jury instructions. The appeals court rules that all of Rumsey’s claims of ineffective assistance of trial counsel fail, and therefore his claim of ineffective assistance of appellate counsel also necessarily fails. As for the instance where Rumsey’s trial counsel might have objected, the appeals court concludes that Rumsey has failed to establish that he was prejudiced by any possible error because it does not call into question the reliability of the outcome of these proceedings.


Decided 03/07/23

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