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Author Archives: dmc-admin

Federal judge rules health care unconstitutional

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — A federal judge rejected a key provision of the Obama administration’s health care law as unconstitutional Monday, ruling the government cannot require people to buy insurance, in a dispute that both sides agree will ultimately be ...

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Supreme Court justices ousted in Iowa

New York - Gay-rights activists celebrated a few bright spots on Election Day, but they also suffered some major setbacks - including losses by key supporters in Congress and the ouster of three Iowa Supreme Court judges who had ruled in favor of same-sex marriage.

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09-4080 Kingstad v. State Bar of Wisconsin

Constitutional Law Freedom of speech; mandatory bar associations The Wisconsin State Bar’s Public Image Campaign did not violate the free speech rights of its members. “The Ninth Circuit’s generous approach to germaneness in Gardner is consistent with the portion of ...

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10-1347 U.S. v. Szymuszkiewicz

Wiretap Act Sufficiency of the evidence Where an employee directed all of his supervisor’s email messages to be forwarded to him, the evidence was sufficient to convict him under the Wiretap Act for intentionally intercepting an electronic communication. “Szymuszkiewicz’s argument ...

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09-2652 & 09-3011 U.S. v. Rea

Sentencing Firearms Where a defendant convicted of drug offenses possessed an AK-47, his sentence was properly enhanced for possessing a firearm in connection with a drug crime. “We conclude that the government carried its initial burden by proving by a ...

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09-1733 Socha v. Pollard

Habeas Corpus AEDPA; equitable tolling Where a state prisoner thought he would be represented by the Innocence Project for almost a year, and was in segregation with access to the law library only a few hours per month, it was ...

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09-2560 Stock v. Rednour

Habeas Corpus Confrontation Clause Where reasonable minds could differ whether to admit impeachment evidence in a state court trial, the district court properly denied the prisoner’s petition for habeas corpus. “The trial court in Stock’s case was aware of the ...

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09-1138 U.S. v. Yancey

Firearms Possession of firearm by drug user; constitutionality Congress acted within constitutional bounds by prohibiting illegal drug users from firearm possession because it is substantially related to the important governmental interest in preventing violent crime. “Ample academic research confirms the ...

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08-3511, 08-3549, 08-3885 & 08-4144 U.S. v. Blitch

Criminal Procedure Jury bias Where the district court failed to inquire into whether the jury was biased, a new trial is required. “We are mindful of the discretion district judges have when determining whether a jury is biased and of ...

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09-2043 Goodman v. National Security Agency, Inc.

Employment Equal Pay Act Where a female employee was paid more, not less, than a comparable male employee, summary judgment was properly granted to the employer on her Equal Pay Act claim. “Moore’s testimony is partly confirmed by the company’s ...

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09-2578 Carlson v. Bukovic

Civil Rights Excessive force Mere physical contact by a police officer does not automatically qualify as a seizure. “[T]he district court correctly submitted the matter to the jury. Even accepting the evidence in the light most favorable to Officer Bukovic, ...

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10-2417 Wilson v. O’Brien

Civil Procedure Interlocutory appeals; privilege Where a non-party complies with an order to disclose, despite his claim of privilege, an interlocutory appeal from the order is moot. “From Nims’s perspective, this matter is moot. He complied with the district judge’s ...

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08-4013 SEC v. Hyatt

Civil Procedure Contempt; due process A court cannot find a party in contempt when the show-case notice only said that that the SEC was seeking a show-cause order, but not that the court would immediately adjudicate whether they were in ...

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09-1892 Bodum USA, Inc., v. La Cafetiere, Inc.

Civil Procedure Foreign law; expert testimony Expert testimony about the meaning of foreign law is unnecessary when the foreign law at issue is France’s. “Sometimes federal courts must interpret foreign statutes or decisions that have not been translated into English ...

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09-1883 Flying J., Inc., v. Van Hollen

Antitrust Minimum-markup laws Wisconsin’s minimum-markup law does not violate the Sherman Act. “It may well be that gasoline retailers are getting together with each other and agreeing on how to estimate their costs or what final price to charge, or ...

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2009AP916-D OLR v. Coplien

Professional Responsibility Reciprocal discipline Where attorney Sandra K. Coplien was suspended for six months in Illinois, reciprocal discipline is imposed. “We approve and adopt the referee’s findings and conclusions, which are unchallenged. By virtue of having been suspended by the ...

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Redacted attorney bills sufficient

When requesting attorney fees in federal court, pursuant to a contractual fee-shifting provision, rather than a statute, the attorney can submit redacted bills that omit descriptions of the work performed.

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Feds won’t speed up state courts

Longstanding precedent holds that federal courts can't enjoin state court proceedings, despite the state court defendant's claim that the proceedings violate federal rights. Younger v. Harris, 401 U.S. 37 (1971).

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Who’s Doing What

Stafford Rosenbaum LLP, with offices in Madison and metro Milwaukee, announced that Connie Anderson and Paul Kent, formerly of Anderson & Kent, S.C., have joined the firm in its Madison office.

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08-1957 Weber v. Universities Research Ass’n., Inc.

Employment Sex discrimination Where an employee spent 16 hours per week on non-work related websites, her termination was not sex discrimination. “Weber identified a number of male URA employees that had outside employment, conducted personal business while at URA, viewed ...

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10-1750 U.S. v. Taylor

Sentencing Bank robbery; physical restraint Even though a bank robber only pushed a victim to the ground and ordered her into another room while holding a firearm, he properly received an enhancement under U.S.S.G. 2B3.1(b)(4)(B) for physically restraining a victim. ...

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10-1443 U.S. v. Slaight

Criminal Procedure Miranda warnings Even though police told a suspect he was not in custody and was free to leave, his unmirandized statements are inadmissible, where the officers show of force was overwhelming. “The government acknowledges as it must that ...

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2009AP2070 In re the commitment of Christopher Melendez

Sexually Violent Persons Due process; retroactivity Christopher Melendrez appeals the judgment entered upon a jury verdict finding that he was a sexually violent person under Wis. Stat. ch. 980 (2007-08). He also appeals the circuit court’s order denying his motion ...

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