At Schiro Criminal Defense, we not only represent clients who are defending against criminal charges but also those who have already been convicted. If you have been found guilty of a crime in Wisconsin, there are several forms of post-conviction relief you may seek, including filing an appeal.
If you have been convicted for a crime and believe that a legal error was made during your trial, you may be entitled to submit a petition for the appellate court to review the proceedings. Our Milwaukee criminal appeals lawyer, Attorney John Schiro, has successfully guided many clients through the process over the past four decades. We have the experience, knowledge, and resources you need to appeal the decision that was made in your case.
WHAT IS AN APPEAL?
In Wisconsin, there are more than 1,000 criminal appeals filed every year. What exactly does it mean to file an appeal? An appeal is a request to the appellate court to review the decisions that were made in the trial court to identify if any errors occurred that entitle the petitioner to get relief from their sentencing.
It is important to know that an appeal is not a new trial. That means that you will not be able to present any new evidence or witness statements. When making its decision, the court of appeals only considers the trial court records, written briefs submitted by the appellant and appellee, and occasionally oral arguments from those two parties.
AM I ELIGIBLE TO FILE AN APPEAL?
Unfortunately, not everyone is eligible to file an appeal. It is not as though a person can submit an appeal simply because they did not like the outcome of their case. Instead, the appellant must have appropriate grounds for an appeal. You will need to make detailed arguments regarding what mistakes occurred during your trial that warrant an overturning of the court’s judgment.
There are several potential errors that could serve as grounds for an appeal, including:
- Your defense attorney made mistakes
- The evidence against you was obtained illegally
- The criminal statute under which you were convicted is unconstitutional
- The sentence ordered against you was impermissible
- There was improper evidence presented to the jury
- Witness statements were collected unlawfully
- There was a problem with the jury selection
WHAT IS POST-CONVICTION RELIEF IN WISCONSIN?
If appealing the case is unsuccessful, a defendant may seek post-conviction relief. Post-conviction relief in Wisconsin refers to the legal process by which individuals who have been convicted of a crime can seek to challenge their conviction or sentence after their direct appeals have been exhausted.
The purpose of post-conviction relief is to provide a mechanism for individuals to raise claims that were not previously addressed in the direct appeals, such as the following:
Newly discovered evidence
Ineffective assistance of counsel
Errors in the application or interpretation of statutory law
In Wisconsin, post-conviction relief is primarily governed by Chapter 974 of the Wisconsin Statutes, which outlines the procedures and grounds for seeking relief. Generally, the defendant files a motion for post-conviction relief–commonly known as a "974.06 motion”–in the trial court where the original conviction took place.
To be eligible for post-conviction relief, a person must typically be in custody as a result of the conviction they seek to challenge. However, there are certain exceptions to this requirement, such as when a person is no longer in custody but their conviction or sentence continues to have significant collateral consequences.
CONSULT WITH OUR SKILLED CRIMINAL DEFENSE LAWYER
To begin the process of filing an appeal, reach out to Schiro Criminal Defense. Attorney Schiro, Milwaukee's criminal appeal attorney, can help you determine if you have adequate grounds to petition the appellate court to review your case. We can then walk you through every step of the process, ensuring that everything adheres to the strict legal requirements.