CRIMINAL DEFENSE

Appleton Criminal Defense | Oshkosh Criminal Defense | Green Bay Criminal Defense

Petit & Dommershausen, SC provides experienced counsel with proven results. We help you consider all of the options so that we can take the best course of action for your individual situation. Call us today for professional, comprehensive and confidential legal advice in the following areas:

Drug Offenses

DRUG OFFENSES

AN EXPERIENCED DRUG DEFENSE TEAM

At Petit & Dommershausen, SC, we ensure that our clients understand the seriousness of drug offenses. If convicted, such offenses often come with serious consequences, which is why we provide highly specialized criminal defense services. Our quick-thinking team of lawyers will do all we can to reduce jail time, fines and, in the very best scenario, get your case dismissed.

It is important that you secure legal representation as soon as possible when facing either misdemeanor or felony charges. Discuss your case with an experienced criminal defense lawyer today. Contact us to weigh your legal options and discuss your rights.

Drug abuse information

Oshkosh Appeals Lawyers, Appleton Appeals Lawyers

Drug Offenses

Sexual Assault

Sexual Assault

An Experienced Sexual Assault Defense Team

Whether you are being investigated for sexual assault or have been formally charged, consult with the attorneys at Petit & Dommershausen, SC. It is necessary that you have an experienced and knowledgeable attorney on your side to explore all of your options and decide on the best path to resolution. We have built a reputation on providing effective legal services and if you need assistance, we will represent you.  You are sure to be pleased with our exceptional preparedness and knowledge. P&D Sexual Assault Defense.

What can an attorney do if I’m guilty? 

An attorney may still be able to win your case even if you are guilty. Remember, the state has to prove your guilt. If the state cannot prove your case you cannot be convicted. Even if you are guilty and want to take responsibility an attorney can negotiate an outcome that may lead to amendment of the charge to a misdemeanor or a diversion agreement that may allow you to earn your way back and, in the process, have the felony dismissed. Given the stakes at hand, if you are charged with a felony get the best attorney you can. Be honest with your attorney. Follow the advice of your attorney. It will be worth the investment.

Is your 17 year old son guilty of a sex offense?

The dangers of social media.
Your son has dated his girlfriend Jane for 6 months. At the last high school dance he breaks up with Jane and takes up with her best friend Mary. After a very public breakup, they exchange barbs with each other using various social media. As a result of Facebook postings and Twitter messages the word gets around school. The police-school liaison officer decides to cool down the situation by intervening. The PSL interviews Jane and your son. The next thing you know, your son is charged with second degree sexual assault under Wis. stats. sec. 948.02(1)(b). Your son now will face up to 40 years in prison and registration as a sexual offender!

Consent. Does it even matter? Age. Does it matter?
“But she consented to fool around!” says your son. “Plus,” your son tells you, “we never had sex—and she’s 16 years old!” “Yes,” responds the officer, “but Jane was less than age 16 when they started fooling around.” “Secondly,” explains the officer, “if she is under age 16 she cannot give consent.” “Consent does matter,” the officer states, as he handcuffs your son. “But my son is only 17–he’s not an adult,” your counter. “Age 17 is the legal age when it comes to criminal offenses,” the officer informs you. “Your son, for the purpose of criminal prosecution, is an adult,” the officer informs you as he places your son in the backseat of the squad car.

But we didn’t have sex! We had our clothes on at all times!
But we never took our clothes off!” says your son, who is now crying in the backseat of the squad car. “It doesn’t matter son, if you touched her over or under the clothing you are still guilty,” the officer explains. “Miss,” the officer says, “I’d get your son an attorney.”

Is this true?
The above scenario is true, and takes place with far greater frequency than you would like to know. Teenagers violate this law at every dance, on most dates and even in school. Talk to your kids, inform them of the laws. Be proactive. However, if the following happens warn your children about the perils of social media. Warn them that they do not have to talk to the police liaison officers. Tell them to assert their right to remain silent. Get an attorney involved. These situations can be “fixed’ in many instances but an ounce of prevention is worth a ton of cure.

Don’t risk your freedom. Depend on us for legal help throughout your criminal defense case. Contact us for a consultation on the alleged sexual assault today. P&D Sexual Assault Defense.

Battery & Domestic Violence

TESTESTSTES

OWI (Operating While Intoxicated/Drunk Driving)

OWI LAWYER

DRUNK DRIVING

You may need an experienced OWI Lawyer today.  If you’ve been arrested for a DUI in Wisconsin, you may feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders. Your family depends on you… and you need a lawyer that you can depend on. Petit & Dommershausen, SC will provide dedicated, personalized service from the moment you step foot in our office. Let us help begin preserving your rights and getting your legal needs met. In Wisconsin, the legal blood alcohol content (BAC) is 0.08%.  The charge of Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) is a serious charge in Wisconsin.

Drunk driving is the act of operating and/or driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs to the degree that mental and motor skill is impaired. It is illegal in all jurisdictions within the U.S. The specific criminal offense can be called driving under the influence [of alcohol and/or other drugs], driving while intoxicated, operating while impaired, or operating a vehicle under the influence. In Wisconsin, it is called OWI, operating while intoxicated. Such laws may also apply to boating or piloting aircraft.

If you are arrested on suspicion of OWI and the officer asks for a blood or breath sample for testing and you refuse, you could also face penalties.  You could face a license suspicion, large fine, or even jail time.

Our team of Attorneys can help you.  Contact an experienced OWI Lawyer today!

OWI LAWYER

Oshkosh Appeals Lawyers, Appleton Appeals Lawyers

Wisconsin DOT

Appeals

APPEALS

Looking to help your friend or family member appeal a criminal conviction?

Are you looking for experienced appellate advice?  The Petit & Dommershausen, S.C. appellate law team can help you. Contact Attorney Greg Petit and the rest of the appeals team today. (920) 739-9900. Our team includes Oshkosh Appeals Lawyers, Appleton Appeals Lawyers, and Lawyers willing to serve your throughout the State of Wisconsin.  The appellate process is complicated.  Choose a team of lawyers with the right experience and history of great outcomes to you help you or your loved one.

The appeals team at Petit and Dommershausen, with attorneys in both the Appleton and Oshkosh offices, can help you appeal a case in which you were convicted.  This can include appealing a jury trial conviction, a suppression motion that was denied, or even a sentence that was issued.

It can be common to assume that because you have plead guilty to a case, that you don’t have any options available to appeal your case or sentence. The truth is, that even if you entered a guilty or no-contest plea as part of a plea deal, it is still possible under certain circumstances to either withdraw that plea or to achieve a more favorable sentence.

When a plea of guilty or no-contest is entered, your attorney and the Judge are required to provide you with important information about all the potential consequences of your plea. If this information wasn’t provided to you, or if you were given incorrect information, it might be possible for you to withdraw your plea. An experienced appeals lawyer knows what to look for in the transcript and knows how to successfully argue that a plea should be withdrawn.

Another option could be to redo the sentencing hearing. This can be accomplished by showing the trial court Judge additional information that should have been presented at the original sentencing hearing, or by correcting or clarifying information that wasn’t properly explained. For example, if the Judge was unaware that you have been receiving drug or alcohol treatment while your case was pending, it may be possible to reopen the case to seek a better sentence. Another common example is if the prosecutor incorrectly cites your prior record, possibly confusing you for another person or citing a charge that was actually dismissed, it can be possible to obtain a more favorable sentence by arguing that the Judge improperly relied on these prior convictions.

Unfortunately, mistakes in the criminal justice system are common, and an experienced appeals attorney is able to review transcripts and obtain information to determine if any errors were made when you entered your plea and were sentenced.

Recent successful outcomes include:

A 30 year sentence was reduced to a 20 year sentence. Because the defendant was sentenced under prior law, the defendant is eligible for release at one quarter of sentence and shall be released at two thirds of sentence.

A withdrawal of plea case revised a sentence from 86 years imprisonment to a 54 years imprisonment. Because the defendant was sentenced under prior law, the defendant is eligible for release at one quarter of sentence and shall be released at two thirds of sentence.

A revision of sentence case where client had his sentence amended from a class G felony (maximum possible penalty of 10 years prison) to a class A misdemeanor (maximum possible penalty of 9 months jail). The defendant received a probation sentence and eliminated need to be on the sexual offender registry.

A withdrawal of a plea on a class B felony (up to 60 years) resulted in an amendment to a class G felony (up to 10 years).  The defendant’s sentence was reduced from original sentence of 14 years prison to 7 years prison.

In another case, restitution was reduced by over $8,000.

In another case, a prison sentence was reduced from four years to 18 months.

While we cannot guarantee any outcomes, our appellate team can review your case and ensure you are fully advised of your options.

The Oshkosh appeals lawyers and Appleton appeals lawyers at Petit and Dommershausen, S.C. have proven track records of success in post-conviction and appellate work. Contact Attorney Greg Petit  for more information.

(920) 739-9900

Access to the Public Records of the Wisconsin Supreme Court and Court of Appeals

Oshkosh Appeals Lawyers, Appleton Appeals Lawyers

If you are questioning whether or not you need an attorney, click here.

Drunk Driving / OWI

If you’ve been arrested for a DUI in Wisconsin, you may feel like the weight of the world is on your shoulders. Your family depends on you… and you need a lawyer that you can depend on. Petit & Dommershausen, SC will provide dedicated, personalized service from the moment you step foot in our office. Let us help begin preserving your rights and getting your legal needs met.

Drunk driving is the act of operating and/or driving a motor vehicle while under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs to the degree that mental and motor skill is impaired. It is illegal in all jurisdictions within the U.S. The specific criminal offense can be called driving under the influence [of alcohol and/or other drugs], driving while intoxicated, operating while impaired, or operating a vehicle under the influence. In Wisconsin, it is called OWI, operating while intoxicated. Such laws may also apply to boating or piloting aircraft.

What You Need To Know If You Are On Probation

Revocation Guide
This is a brief procedural guide for when your agent accuses you of violating your rules of supervision. Arrest If your agent suspects you of violating your rules, you may be arrested and taken to the county jail. It will likely be a few days before you see your agent or another agent to discuss the allegations with you. The Department of Corrections investigates reported violations and will have some information before they visit you.

Interview 
At this point, you have probably been in jail on a “hold” for at least a day or two. Your agent believes you violated your rules or you wouldn’t have been arrested. Unfortunately you are required to give a statement to your agent. While this statement cannot be used against you, if new charges are filed, they can be used to revoke you. The reason it can’t be used in a criminal prosecution is because you’re required to give the statement and therefore it constitutes a compelled statement which also means your agent will not read you any Miranda warnings. When your agent speaks with you, you are required to give a truthful statement. If your alleged violations involve drugs or alcohol, be receptive to treatment.

To revoke or not 
Your agent now needs to determine whether to revoke you, release you with a warning or offer you an alternative to revocation. If it is revoked, there is only one question – how much time you will be locked up for. If your probation is not revoked you cannot be held in jail by your agent beyond the appellate time period window. If you haven’t already consulted an attorney now is the time to do so, before this decision is made. It may be possible for a good attorney to convince your agent not to revoke or at least to put you in the best possible position for your hearing.

Preparing for the revocation hearing 
A good criminal defense attorney can make all the difference at a hearing. It is important to identify all of the issues and needs that you have. You should hire somebody who can effectively advocate your interests and can negotiate with the probation agent. If the case goes to hearing, you need to be prepared to argue for an appropriate alternative to revocation. You should also be prepared to defend vigorously against false allegations. Remember, criminal cases are often prosecuted in conjunction with probation revocations—a revocation hearing can be one opportunity to confront your accusers in an informal setting.

Many times a good attorney can stop you from being revoked. Many people consider probation revocations to be very difficult to win; however, they can be won or at least you can get a better sentence with proper preparation and can get valuable information if new charges are filed. These cases are defensible and should be approached aggressively. Not to mention, witnesses and alleged victims can be questioned at these hearings with no real attorney helping them (only the agents). This testimony can be invaluable to both sentencing if revoked and new criminal charges if filed.

FAQ

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS (FAQ)

Q: What can happen if I am convicted of a crime?

A: A criminal conviction could result in the loss of privilege to possess a firearm or the loss of your driver's license.  Additional consequences could include the loss of your voting rights or abilities to obtain certain licenses.

Q: Can a criminal conviction restrict my ability to travel?

A: A criminal conviction can impose restrictions on travel within the United States and outside of the United States.

Q: What are the potential punishments for an OWI first?

A: OWI penalties can be very expense and cause a lot of headaches. The good news is that for an OWI first you will not need to spend any time in jail as it is a non-criminal ticket. If convicted of an OWI first you must pay a fine of at least $150 but not more than $300. You will be required to have an Ignition interlock device (IIED) installed in your vehicle for at least a year and your license will be revoked for 6 to 9 months. The good news is that you will be eligible for an occupational license through the DMV immediately.

Q: What are the punishments for an OWI Second?

A: An OWI Second is considered a criminal matter in Wisconsin and the judge can order you serve jail time. If you have had conviction for an OWI in the 10 years prior, you are required to sit between 5 days and 6 months in the county jail. Fines range from between $350 and $1100 plus court costs. You will be required to have an Ignition interlock device (IIED) installed in your vehicle for at least a year and your license will be revoked for at least year. Both the IIED and the revocation of your licenses can be increased to 18 months by the judge. You will be able to apply for an occupational license after 45 days.  If you have not had an OWI within the proceeding 10 years or you have not had an OWI causing great bodily harm or death in your life time these punishments may be reduced.

Q: What are the Punishments for an OWI Third?

A: An OWI Third is considered a criminal matter in Wisconsin and the judge can order you serve jail time. If you are convicted of an OWI Third you will be required to serve between 45 days and 1 year in the county jail. Fines range from between $600 and $2000 plus court costs. You will be required to have an Ignition interlock device (IIED) installed in your vehicle for at least a year and your license will be revoked for at least 2 years.  Both the IIED and the revocation of your licenses can be increased to 3 years by the judge. You will be able to apply for an occupational license after 45 days.

Q: Will I lose my license for a fourth offense OWI?

A: No, but starting December 2018 any OWI 4th offense (and higher), could subject you to a license revocation period of 10 years; with no ability to obtain an occupational license until eligible for reinstatement.

Q: Is probation an option for an OWI offense?

A: Probation is an option as long as you serve the mandatory minimum jail term. Probation can be utilized to avoid a lengthy jail, or even prison, sentence. Probation also gives individuals the ability to meaningfully participate in treatment or attend community sobriety meetings.

Q: My last OWI was 11 years ago, I’m now charged with a fourth, is it still a felony?

A: Yes. All OWI’s 4th and higher are now felonies, regardless of the timeframe from when they occurred. Some of the consequences for a felony offense include not being able to vote for a period of time while serving your sentence and a permanent restriction from possessing any firearms.

Q: Can I own a gun with an expunged felony?

A: No, in Wisconsin, firearms rights are restored only by a governor’s pardon. Pardon restores rights and privileges lost as a result of conviction. Gun rights are restored unless the conviction was for a domestic violence misdemeanor.

Q: Can I own a gun with a domestic violence conviction?

A: No. A Federal Act strips away your right to own a firearm if you were ever convicted of any type of violent crime against either your wife or the mother of your children. This law imposes a lifetime gun possession ban on people convicted of what is labeled a "misdemeanor crime of domestic violence.

Q: Is there any way to avoid the domestic violence gun ban?

A: At times, with the cooperation of the district attorney, a charge can be amended to a charge which does not have an element of violence under the definition. This alone does not solve the problem as often times the criminal complaint will need to be rewritten to take out any reference to ‘violence’.

Q: Do I have to be under a certain age to qualify for expungement?

A: Yes.  You must be under 25 years old at the time you committed the crime that you are trying to have expunged.  If you are 25 years old or older, you will not qualify, no matter what type of crime you are charged with.

Q: How does a judge decide if my conviction can be expunged?

A: Expungement may be granted if “the court determines the person will benefit and society will not be harmed.”  This is a broad instruction to judges and allows them to consider a variety of factors related to your case.

Q: Can any conviction be expunged if I was under 25 at the time?

A: No.  In general, expungement is only available if the maximum amount of imprisonment that you could receive for a conviction is 6 years or less.  Additionally, you will not be eligible if you have been previously convicted of certain crimes, or if your current charge is a violent felony or another specifically excluded crime.

Additional Important Information to Review

Reasons You Need An Attorney To Fight Your Criminal Charge

Collateral Consequences

In criminal cases, a skilled attorney can also help eliminate some of the unknown and collateral consequences that can occur if someone is not represented by counsel or is represented by counsel that is not well versed in criminal law and criminal defense. Some collateral consequences that one may not be aware of without the assistance of experienced counsel can include the following:

  1. Loss of privilege to possess a firearm (guns).
  2. Loss of driver’s license.
  3. Loss of privileges to vote.
  4. Ability to obtain a license or keep a license that you already have within certain professions (i.e. doctors, nurses, CNAs, foster parents etc.).
  5. Restriction on travel within the United States and outside of the United States.
  6. Deportation from the United States.
  7. Registration as a sexual offender.
  8. Forced submission of a DNA sample along with a mandatory $250 DNA surcharge that is assessed against a defendant.
  9. Enhanced penalties if one is charged with a future operating while intoxicated count.
  10. Enhanced penalties if one is charged with future criminal counts.
  11. The accumulation of a “strike” which could result in a life sentence for a future offense if that offense falls under the two or three strikes and you’re out provisions.
  12. Inclusion of your name on the Wisconsin Circuit Court Access Program website that would be searchable for any potential employer, friend, relative or anyone else that has use of a computer and the internet.
  13. Ability to receive federal student loans or grants.
  14. Ability to obtain a loan from a bank or from a creditor.
  15. Ability to rent an apartment.

Obviously, some or all of these collateral consequences listed above could prove life changing when it comes time for education, employment, selecting a residence or travel. Further, most of these collateral consequences are not spelled out in the criminal complaint that you have received and may not be mentioned by the prosecutor, the court or anyone else at any time in the proceedings.

Let us help protect your rights and provide you with a better understanding of your legal options. Contact us today for a consultation. Appleton Criminal Defense. Oshkosh Criminal Defense.

Criminal Do’s and Don’ts

  1. Retain an attorney who specializes in criminal defense as soon as possible, preferably before you have talked to or answered the questions of a police detective.
  2. No matter how charming or terrifying the detective is, do not share any information other than your name, address and vital statistics (i.e., date of birth, etc.).
  3. Refuse to talk to anyone about your case except for your attorney and his or her staff.
  4. Refuse to answer any questions asked by the police or anyone else about the present charges or any other charges or alleged crimes without the advice of an attorney.
  5. Refuse to give any consent or waivers to the police.
  6. Refuse to submit to any line-ups, identifications, examinations or tests without prior consultation with your attorney.
  7. It is better to not say anything than to lie. Lying to a police officer can be an additional charge of obstructing which, in Wisconsin, is a misdemeanor with a maximum of a $10,000 fine and/or 9 months in jail.
  8. Police officers cannot make legally binding promises to you regarding your prosecution. Only a District Attorney or a U.S. Attorney has the power to make any deal.
  9. Be polite to everyone concerning this matter, but do not discuss the case.
  10. Be aware that if you are out on bond, you must not violate that bond or have any additional violations of the law. If you violate any condition of the bond or are arrested, the District Attorney could add a charge of bail jumping, which could be a felony with an additional 6-year penalty.
  11. You must notify your attorney and the Clerk of Courts within 48 hours of any change of address.