|About Judge Schroeder
|When Judge Schroeder was a young boy in Milwaukee, his mother would monitor his television watching because of what he calls her conservative views. She especially did not want him to watch police shows, and one of the programs she would not allow him to watch was Dragnet.
When his family moved to Kenosha and he associated with kids in the neighborhood, he acquired a reputation with them.
Judge Schroeder, when in private law practice as a fairly new attorney, ordered a new Cadillac. I worked across the hall from him in the office building. I knew him to talk to in the hall but not socially. He came into our office and invited all of us to see his new Cadillac. We all went outside to the parking lot. We saw an all yellow Cadillac – paint, headliner and seats. It was the color of a scrambled egg, ugly and gaudy. You had to squint to look at it. for attitudes that were either his way or no way. He is still remembered by them in that way.
Schroeder opened the car door, sat behind the wheel, looked at the odometer, which had 7 miles on it, and refused to take delivery of the car because it was not virginal. Someone had driven it before him.
It is this attitude Judge Schroeder takes to the courtroom. He has been written up in the Kenosha News as the Kenosha judge who is most rejected by defendants going to trial. The defendants and their attorneys prefer another judge to Schroeder because of their characterization of Judge Schroeder to be a hanging judge.
Judge Schroeder erred in believing Julie’s letter
was a dying declaration or an excited utterance. The judge further illuminated
his error in trying to explain himself after the jury convicted Mark. The judge
said that in England, in the calendar year 1790, the Church, being powerful,
helped write law for England. The church said that a person who knew they were
dying and made a dying declaration or an excited utterance could be believed
because they knew if they lied on their deathbed they would go to hell.
This assumes, of course, that the person dying was of sound mind. Julie was not.
She was diagnosed with a mild case of depression by her doctor in September and
a severe case just 2 days before her death (her fourth documented case). Her
letter was not an excited utterance or a dying declaration. It was a premeditated
document she prepared in advance as she had prepared acquiring prescription and
over the counter medicines in preceding years. The judge, by determining in
August, 2007 that Mark was guilty made a reversible error in the January trial by
allowing Julie’s letter to be admissible when in fact it was a fraudulent
Julie wrote that document to help incriminate Mark in her
accusation of Mark attempting to murder her. She did not intend to commit
suicide, she did not intend to die, nor did Mark murder her. She was trying
to accuse her husband of attempted murder and get rid of him that way instead
of divorcing him where she would only get half the assets and possibly not the
children because of her depression. In her severe bout of depression, anorexia
and insomnia, and with a stomach containing self-administered antifreeze, Paxil, Ambien and Benadryl, plus other concentrations of things the prosecution toxicologist did not analyze, she died through her own misadventure. She lost control of events she set in motion and died. Her intention was to call 911 and say to the paramedics that he husband had poisoned her, get him put in prison for attempted murder, and then get the children and all the assets. She did not think she would get the children in a divorce because of her history of depression and documented hallucinations. She absolutely needed the children as an emotional crutch.
Judge Schroeder determined Mark was guilty at the August 2007
hearing. Mark, therefore, could not get a fair trial in January 2008 because
the judge had already determined he was guilty. The judge was biased in the
January trial because of his determination in the August 2007 forfeiture
hearing that Mark was guilty. The letter was allowed as evidence and the jury
convicted Mark based on the letter. That makes introducing the letter as
evidence in the trial a reversible error