Legal Question in Appeals and Writs in Wisconsin

Writ of Error Coram Nobis

Should the State of Wisconsin Circuit and Appeal Court deny a writ of error coram nobis, even though it is fully supported by the original sentencing judge (now retired), and the defense attorney. The writ is based on information learned after sentencing which the original judge and attorney both agree would have prevented a felony conviction. The reason stated for the rejection by the appeal court is that the information learned may be used as ''defensive information''. The appeals court was originally the source that said the writ of error coram nobis was the correct avenue of relief. They have then denied the writ. Can I now ask instead for a writ of mandatum from the state supreme court? It's unbelievable that with the support of the original judge, that this would still be denied.

R. Kotas

Asked on 1/03/02, 6:46 am

1 Answer from Attorneys

John A. Birdsall Birdsall Law Offices, S.C.
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Re: Writ of Error Coram Nobis

The issuance of writ of coram nobis could perhaps be the directive of the Supremes in a writ of mandamus. You refer to "mandatum" which is a civil law "contract of mandate." Mandamus is a directive issued to a public official (in this case a tribunal) to perform some duty that they are required by law to perform. If you truly have the original judge on board -- get him to sign an affidavit (as well as the DA, if you can) and move the Supremes for action. What reasons did the trial court give for denying this coram nobis issue? I need to know more before advising further.

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Answered on 1/03/02, 4:55 pm

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