A Sixth Amendment Update for 2017-18 and 2018-19

Sixth Amendment cases address a defendant’s right to a fair trial—specifically, the right to (1) have a prompt and public trial, with an impartial jury, (2) know the nature of the charges and the identity of one’s accuser, (3) confront adverse witnesses, (4) testify and present witnesses on one’s behalf, and (5) have a competent lawyer.[1] A number of these cases reach the supreme court every term, just as often as those involving the Fourth Amendment, and thus they merit periodic monitoring to determine what has changed (and what has not) in the justices’ voting.[2][Continue Reading…]

Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 1973-74

These tables are derived from information contained in 316 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions that were turned up in a Nexis Uni search for decisions filed between September 1, 1973, and August 31, 1974.  The total of 316 decisions does not include rulings arising from (1) disciplinary matters involving lawyers, and (2) various short orders pertaining to petitions, motions, and the like.  

The tables are available as a complete set and by individual topic in the subsets listed below.

Four-to-Three Decisions
Decisions Arranged by Vote Split
Frequency of Justices in the Majority
Distribution of Opinion Authorship
Frequency of Agreement Between Pairs of Justices
Average Time Between Oral Argument and Opinions Authored by Each Justice

“Women and the Wisconsin Supreme Court”: An Update through 2018-19

The most recent post in this series showed that, although women conducted a rapidly increasing share of oral arguments at the supreme court from 1981-82 (10%) through 2014-15 (33%), the acceleration did not continue during the next two terms—and, indeed, the rate dropped back below 30%. Now that two more terms have passed, we’ll revisit the topic to discover what transpired in 2017-18 and 2018-19.[Continue Reading…]

Public Defender Outcomes Compared to the “Field”: An Update for 2014-15 through 2018-19

Five years have passed since we measured the results obtained by public defenders against the achievements of other attorneys in criminal and indigent-defense cases, so we are more than due for an update.[Continue Reading…]

An Update on Fourth-Amendment Cases: 2017-18 and 2018-19

Two terms have passed since our last Fourth-Amendment update, and significant developments have transpired in the interim. For one thing, Justices Rebecca Bradley and Daniel Kelly have now been on the court long enough (four terms and three terms, respectively) to yield a substantial quantity of votes on Fourth-Amendment cases. We have also gotten our first glimpse of Justice Rebecca Dallet’s stance, though only general and preliminary conclusions are possible so early in her tenure. Other topics beckon as well, and we’ll begin with an overview of the number of Fourth-Amendment cases decided each term.[Continue Reading…]

Gavels Win! Again

As June turned to July and the fantasy league approached season’s end, it became clear that only a heroic effort on the part of another contender could overtake the Gavels of the State Public Defender’s Office. No such rally occurred, however, and the Gavels coasted to their fourth consecutive championship. In recent years, the league office has bolstered other teams’ rosters, hoping to make them more competitive, but, so far, none has been able to keep pace with the Gavels. No doubt the issue of competitive balance will be on the Competition Committee’s agenda at its winter meeting, and rosters may be augmented again before the start of the 2019-20 season.

Meanwhile, at last week’s awards banquet, the league honored the Gavels and Colleen Ball, who accounted for more than a quarter of the team’s points. Tribute was also paid to O’Neil, Cannon, Hollman, DeJong & Laing, whose contribution of 30 points (remarkable for an individual firm) represented over half the total for their team, the Citations.   For the Writs, Habush, Habush & Rottier led the way with 17 points; Stafford Rosenbaum topped the scoring for the Affirmed with 13, and Boardman & Clark paced the Waivers with 12.

See the following table for the final totals of each team and every individual law firm.[Continue Reading…]

The 2018-19 Term: Some More Impressions–and a Paradox

Using data from the just-completed 2018-19 term, we can update the findings for a number of significant topics that SCOWstats has been following for several years. There is much here to suggest greater efficiency at the supreme court in 2018-19—which, one could predict, would allow the justices to handle more cases than they did the previous term.[Continue Reading…]

Wisconsin Supreme Court Statistics, 2018-19

These tables are derived from information contained in 58 Wisconsin Supreme Court decisions filed between September 1, 2018, and the end of the court’s term in the summer of 2019. The total of 58 decisions omits orders pertaining to various motions, petitions, and disciplinary matters, but it does include three deadlocked (3-3) per curiam decisions. As the court no longer indicates how each justice voted in these deadlocked cases, they are included only in the “Number of Oral Arguments Presented” table.[Continue Reading…]

The Supreme Court’s 2018-19 Term: Some Initial Impressions

With the last substantive decisions now filed for the 2018-19 term, we can begin a series of posts that examine various aspects of the justices’ labors over the past 12 months.[Continue Reading…]

Fantasy League Update

This week’s decisions delivered five points to the Citations for a brief and oral argument by Tracey Wood & Associates in State v. Jessica M. Randall, thereby moving the Citations into a tie with the Writs for second place.

Click here for the complete, updated standings.