Showing posts with label Wisconsin. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Wisconsin. Show all posts

Monday, November 8, 2010

Wisconsin: Doyle and Pardons

The Wisconsin Press Gazette notes that "despite a criticism that Wisconsin Gov. Jim Doyle has been granting pardons at a high rate in what will be his last year in office," several "local applicants" did not have much luck before the State's Pardon Advisory Board. Doyle has actually only granted 214 pardons (and zero commutations of sentence), despite the fact that applications are increasing dramatically. The Gazette reports that a previous governor, Thompson, granted the most at 238. Doyle's processor, Scott McCallum, had 24, Tony Earl granted 202 and Lee Dreyfus granted 112. See story here.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Wisconsin: Data on Governors, Clemency

Breaking News: Governor Doyle still trails Governor Thompson in the number of pardons granted (214 to 238). Thompson, who appears to be the gold standard of clemency for Representative Scott Suder (R), was SEVEN times more likely than Doyle to pluck criminals right out of prison and throw them in the streets (one of Steven's intolerable sins). Thompson usurped the decision making of the legislative and judicial branches (to employ Suder's style of muckraking) by commuting the sentence of seven convicted criminals! Doyle, on the other hand, has not commuted a single sentence.

Here are some data on recent Wisconsin governors:

Dreyfus (1979-83) 112 pardons / 4 commutations / 0 reprieves
Earl (1983-87) 202 pardons / 35 commutations / 0 reprieves
Thompson (1987-2001) 238 pardons / 7 commutations / 0 reprieves
McCallum (2001-03) 24 pardons / 0 commutations / 0 reprieves
Doyle (2003-) 214 pardons / 0 commutations / 0 reprieves

Wisconsin: Scott Suder's Gallery of Rogues

Representative Scott Suder (R) is concerned that Governor Doyle is plucking vicious criminals out of jail and tossing them into the streets, in order that they might form gangs, burn our homes, rape, pillage and plunder. Representative Suder desires that Governor Doyle stop coddling these creeps and insists that Doyle's rejection rate for clemency petitions since January - a whopping 85 percent - is just not enough.

Let's meet one of the villains Representative Suder is so concerned about: Frank James II

OK, technically speaking, Mr. James was not actually yanked from prison. That would have required a commutation of sentence. But Governor Doyle has never ever granted a commutations of sentence - that's right, not a single one. No, Mr. James was simply pardoned for his 1986 conviction for attempted armed robbery. James left prison in 1989, yep, more than twenty years ago! Since James left prison, he has become a husband, a father, a pastor, a college graduate (Magna Cum Laude) and a mentor.

It appears that this is just the kind of person Scott Suder does not want on the streets of Wisconsin! How the State's Pardon and Advisory unanimously recommended clemency for James is downright baffling !

See story here.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Wisconsin: Suder. One Clueless Dude

Over at the Badger Herald, they are writing about the fact that Gov. Jim Doyle has granted over 85 criminal pardons this year (out of almost 600 applications). The Herald quotes Rep. Scott Suder (R) who says Doyle's 85 percent rejection rate (for 2010) amounts to a "penchant for coddling criminals" and putting "more criminals back on the streets.”

It is a startling charge that is bound to impress any unusually stupid and uninformed citizens of Wisconsin.

In fact, Governor Doyle has not granted a single commutation of sentence (you know, those things that literally pluck prisoners from prison and toss them out in the streets). Doyle has only granted pardons (which restore civil rights), and only then to people who have committed low level crimes and have waited at least five years before applying. That is to say, Doyle did not toss them "back on the streets" - in any meaningful sense of the language. They had already served their time and have been living as the kind of law-abiding citizens that Suder should be celebrating and praising, not misrepresenting and using for campaign fodder.

In sum, in matters related to clemency, Scott Suder is a moron, or one of the most despicable lying jerks Wisconsin politics has ever seen. See story here.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Wisconsin: Rare Candy!

The Appleton Postcrescent reports Democratic Gov. (and former prosecutor) Jim Doyle has issued "criminal pardons" at a "torrid pace" since he announced he would not seek re-election. More particularly, the Postcrescent reports that the 85 pardons granted by Doyle over the last twelve months are more than former Gov. Tommy Thompson granted in seven years. Governor Doyle has actually granted 214 pardons since he took office in 2003. The former Governor Thompson granted only 62 pardons from 1994 to 1999.

After the impressive, earth-shaking bone-rattling presentation of these clemency data, the Postcrescent reports:

(1) Doyle has not granted a single commutation of sentence 
(2) He has averaged a mere 18 pardons a year (Torrid?)
(3) All of the pardons that have been granted have been given to applicants after a mandatory waiting period of at least five years 
(4) The crimes addressed in the recent batch of pardons were thus committed between 1958 (you read that right!) and 2001
and (5) :
Doyle’s pardons during the last year mostly have involved low-profile ex-convicts who committed crimes years ago.
Wow! We don't know whether to cry, or fall asleep!

Rep. Scott Suder (R) is said to be righteously upset however. He says, “It should be a rarity to grant pardons," and condemns Doyle  for "just handing pardons out like they were candy.” Suder's is criticism is certain to play well in the minds of dunderheads completely ignorant of the fact that Doyle has gotten almost 600 applications just since January.

One wonders if Mr. Suder would even bother to take his children Trick or Treating in a neighborhood where 85 percent of the houses rejected his children's requests for candy, or simply did not answer the door! What a knucklehead! See story here.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Wisconsin: DA Support for Sex?

An Oklahoma City law student is accusing a District Attorney of sexual harrassment via text messaging while she was seeking his support for her own clemency application. Maria Ruskiewicz was prosecuted by Ken Kratz, in 1997, for possession of marijuana with intent to deliver. In 2008, she met with Kratz and asked him to support her application for clemency. She admits that she later sent Kratz a text message thanking him for his support, but claims Katz then bombarded her with suggestive messages and sent angry messages when she did not reply. She is actually the third woman to come forward in recent weeks to accuse Kratz of such behavior. It appears that Gov. Jim Doyle (Wisconsin) did grant Ruskiewicz a pardon last month, and that Kratz continued to support the application. See story here and here.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Wisconsin: Request

In 1971, Donald Blank was charged with the sale of a dangerous drug and, afterward, sentenced to 18 months of probation and a stayed 18-month jail term. Now 58 years old, he will appear before the State's seven-member Governor’s Pardon Advisory Board. Blank's witty clemency application says, among other things: "I do not necessarily feel I deserve to be pardoned in any way, but the law provides it in some instances, so I am applying." See story here.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Wisconsin: Request

The Wisconsin Rapids Tribune is reporting on the case of Ronald D. Mehlbrech who is seeking a pardon for a crime that he committed 25 years ago. Mehlbrech served year in jail and six years of probation for being a party to an armed robbery of gas station. But he has been "clean" ever since. The article suggests the pardon process in Wisconsin takes about one and half year to complete. It also notes that there were 95 applications in 2008 and only 15 pardons granted. See story here.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Wisconsin: Report

Here is a nifty little report on clemency in the State of Wisconsin. It says that, since 1987, more than 300 people have received pardons from the governor, with most of the offenses being drug-related and the average pardon appearing 20 years after the crime. One individual describes the State's clemency process as something like, "being a chicken breast, being flipped over on high flame." Bill Lueders of the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council argues that pardon records should be online. How do you get to such information?
That information is a public record and it is available for public inspection. It's kept in a cardboard documents box in the 10th floor office of the secretary of state's office in Madison along with a hand-written index. Copies are available but by law, the agency charges $2 for each one-page pardon document, about 10 times the cost of copies in most other state agencies.
Michael Hayes, a Milwaukee attorney, agrees that putting the information online is a "great idea," but reminds clients that "The odds of getting a pardon are pretty slim." For example, in 2006, 88 people applied and only 12 received a pardon. In 2007, 86 people applied and 16 received a pardon.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Wisconsin: Pardon Not for Sale

There probably will not be a more unusual pardon-related story than this one for a while ... David Day (48) a convicted sex offender, threatened to have five children murdered unless Gov. Jim Doyle (D) freed him from prison. At the time, Day was at Waupun Correctional Institution, and his plan was to have the children publicly impaled unless he was pardoned and someone also gave him $1 million. However, the inmate he asked to perform the kidnapping told the police. Day now faces a maximum of 200 years in prison and a $500,000 fine. See report here and here.

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