Mastantuono & Coffee SC

Mastantuono & Coffee SC Criminal Defense. Crisis Management. Making Problems Better. *** If you need to talk with a lawyer, please call for the fastest response. ***
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Our Wisconsin criminal defense attorneys provide strong legal representation for people accused in criminal cases, as well as counsel and advocacy in crisis situations like law enforcement investigations and inquiries from regulatory agencies.

Operating as usual

On April 7, 2021, State Bar President Kathy Brost and President-elect Cheryl Daniels attended the Assembly Committee on ...
04/25/2021
State Bar Presidents Testify in Support of AB 69 to Expand and Reform Expungement

On April 7, 2021, State Bar President Kathy Brost and President-elect Cheryl Daniels attended the Assembly Committee on Criminal Justice and Public Safety to testify in support of Assembly Bill 69, a bill that would make common-sense changes to Wisconsin’s restrictive expungement law. AB 69, and companion Senate Bill 78, were introduced by Senator Darling (R-River Hills), Senator Roys (D-Madison), Representative Steffen (R-Green Bay) and Representative Goyke (D-Milwaukee). Both bills enjoy robust bipartisan support with a long list of co-sponsors.
https://www.wisbar.org/NewsPublications/RotundaReport/Pages/Article.aspx?ArticleID=28351&source=homepagefeature

On April 7, State Bar President Kathy Brost and President-elect Cheryl Daniels testified in support of a bill to reform Wisconsin´s restrictive expungement laws with changes that would expand eligibility for one-time, non-violent offenders.

"Starting in March of last year, New York Times reporters tracked every known coronavirus case in every correctional set...
04/19/2021
Incarcerated and Infected: How the Virus Tore Through the U.S. Prison System

"Starting in March of last year, New York Times reporters tracked every known coronavirus case in every correctional setting in the United States, including state and federal prisons, immigrant detention centers, juvenile detention facilities, and county and regional jails.

We measured the pandemic’s excruciating impact on prisoners using records requests and interviews with people from all corners of the system. We spoke with incarcerated people and their families, prison wardens, jailers, prosecutors, defense attorneys and civil rights groups.

A year later, one in three inmates in state prisons are known to have had the virus, the data shows. In federal facilities, at least 39 percent of prisoners are known to have been infected. The true count is most likely higher because of a dearth of testing, but the findings align with reports from The Marshall Project and the Associated Press, U.C.L.A. Law and The COVID Prison Project that track Covid-19 in prisons."

https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2021/04/10/us/covid-prison-outbreak.html?campaign_id=9&emc=edit_nn_20210411&instance_id=29113&nl=the-morning®i_id=129730362&segment_id=55362&te=1&user_id=e2aa4044b6f263e769da68a6e42ec4a7

Since March 2020, New York Times reporters have tracked every known coronavirus case in every correctional setting in the nation. More than 2,700 inmates have died.

I was thrown into solitary confinement the day I arrived at the Reception and Medical Center, a state prison in Lake But...
03/25/2021
Opinion | I Survived 18 Years in Solitary Confinement

I was thrown into solitary confinement the day I arrived at the Reception and Medical Center, a state prison in Lake Butler, Fla., because of my young age. Three weeks in, I was transferred to the general population of a different prison. But a year and a half later, at age 15, I was put back into solitary confinement after being written up for a few minor infractions.

I had no idea that I would be in isolation for the next 18 years.

https://www.nytimes.com/2021/03/25/opinion/solitary-confinement-reform.html?action=click&module=Opinion&pgtype=Homepage

The harrowing injustice I suffered as a boy should never happen to another child in this country.

"The Biden team won't have to break new ground on this issue. Instead, it can build upon a bipartisan movement that bega...
03/09/2021
Opinion: The one issue that could bring Democrats and Republicans together

"The Biden team won't have to break new ground on this issue. Instead, it can build upon a bipartisan movement that began under President Barack Obama and continued under President Donald Trump."

We agree with the author; Van Jones runs through recent bipartisan efforts at criminal justice reform and pending legislation here.

https://www.cnn.com/2021/03/09/opinions/bipartisanship-criminal-justice-reform-jones-reed/index.html

Van Jones and Louis Reed write that while President Joe Biden's prospects for bipartisanship grow increasingly slim, there is one area that offers some hope: criminal justice reform.

We're really tired of representing high school seniors in adult criminal court for any criminal accusation, including su...
03/01/2021
Bringing Sanity and Common Sense Back to Juvenile Justice in Wisconsin | Mastantuono & Coffee SC

We're really tired of representing high school seniors in adult criminal court for any criminal accusation, including such low-level offenses as possessing marijuana. Wisconsin's Governor has made proposals for sensible reforms to Wisconsin's juvenile laws. See them here.

https://www.milwaukeecriminallawyers.com/blog/bringing-sanity-and-common-sense-back-juvenile-justice-wisconsin/

Wisconsin Governor Evers included many criminal justice reform proposals in his biannual budget, including juvenile justice reform.

Raising the age of adult criminal jurisdiction from 17 years old to 18, legalizing marijuana, prohibiting the shackling ...
02/18/2021
48 Justice-Related Proposals by Evers

Raising the age of adult criminal jurisdiction from 17 years old to 18, legalizing marijuana, prohibiting the shackling of juveniles in court proceedings, establishing a commission to review Wisconsin's sentencing structure. The Governor's criminal justice-related budget proposals are listed in this article by Wisconsin Justice Initiative's Gretchen Schuldt in Urban Milwaukee.
https://urbanmilwaukee.com/2021/02/17/48-justice-related-proposals-by-evers/?fme=5fb59e1e03

Budget plan packed with proposed changes to state system of justice.

So grateful for these beautiful flowers from my client. Probably the best part of this job is helping people. - RC
02/07/2021

So grateful for these beautiful flowers from my client. Probably the best part of this job is helping people. - RC

So grateful for these beautiful flowers from my client. Probably the best part of this job is helping people. - RC

A coalition of Republicans and Democrats is renewing its effort to wipe out the criminal records of low-level, nonviolen...
01/22/2021
Bipartisan group seeks to expunge records of low-level offenders to help them find jobs

A coalition of Republicans and Democrats is renewing its effort to wipe out the criminal records of low-level, nonviolent offenders to make it easier for them to find jobs.
https://www.jsonline.com/story/news/politics/2021/01/21/bipartisan-group-seeks-expunge-records-low-level-offenders/4236224001/

Legislators pushed a similar plan two years ago to expunge convictions but couldn't get their bill to Gov. Tony Evers despite bipartisan support.

12/24/2020

On this Holiday Eve, please accept our warmest wishes for a Safe and Peaceful weekend. We're here for you if you need us. The folks at M&C Law. -Craig, Rebecca, Leah, Adriana, Andrea, and Marcus.

Wisconsin's rise in COVID positive inmates in our prisons looks like this. As pointed out in this NYT editorial, https:/...
12/07/2020

Wisconsin's rise in COVID positive inmates in our prisons looks like this. As pointed out in this NYT editorial, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/21/opinion/sunday/coronavirus-prisons-jails.html:

"Like the nation overall, U.S. correctional facilities are experiencing record spikes in coronavirus infections this fall. During the week of Nov. 17, there were 13,657 new coronavirus infections reported across the state and federal prison systems, according to the Marshall Project, which has been tracking these numbers since March. The previous week saw 13,676 new cases. These are by far the highest weekly tolls reported since the pandemic began. With winter descending, the situation threatens to grow bleaker still."

There are legal options available in Wisconsin to look at inmates who are being released to community supervision in the next 6-12 months, and review whether earlier release is warranted due to age or health conditions. Is this the right thing to do during this extraordinary time?

As we await final word on whether one of our cases will proceed to jury trial this afternoon in MKE Co, interesting stor...
11/23/2020
Jury duty? No thanks say many, forcing trials to be delayed

As we await final word on whether one of our cases will proceed to jury trial this afternoon in MKE Co, interesting story on decreasing juror availability nationally.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/jury-duty-no-thanks-say-many-forcing-trials-to-be-delayed/2020/11/22/82d05822-2cff-11eb-9dd6-2d0179981719_story.html

Court officials across the country say a low turnout of people summoned to jury duty is derailing plans to restart trials for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began

Hello M&C FB friends. Our local alt-weekly's Best of MKE nomination period is going on right now. If you think we deserv...
09/28/2020
2020 Best of Milwaukee

Hello M&C FB friends. Our local alt-weekly's Best of MKE nomination period is going on right now. If you think we deserve a shot in the Services Rendered/Criminal Defense Lawyers category, we'd be honored to be nominated!

https://shepherdexpress.com/best-of-milwaukee/2020?fbclid=IwAR0VV4sPvU0A1_IRuhhMydBffmM6DUa2GNY7q_9zdDPOI8fmzJLnB3KE82Q#//

Our Best of Milwaukee is based entirely on the votes of our readers—and who better than the people that live and work in Milwaukee to decide upon the best the city has to offer in food, retail, health, culture and politics?

When protests become what the protest is marching about. Our firm is very proud of client Frank Nitty and the hard work ...
08/29/2020
Milwaukee activist Frank Nitty sues sheriff's deputies after he was bloodied during Hoan Bridge arrest, proposes new policies

When protests become what the protest is marching about.

Our firm is very proud of client Frank Nitty and the hard work he brings every day to draw attention to racial inequities in the criminal justice system. He just completed an epic march to Washington DC to raise the voice of our city at festivities honoring MLK. Earlier this year, Frank was arrested during a march in Milwaukee. He was injured and worse, had to fight a false police accusation; we were happy to help him clear his name. He now fights for justice and better police practices in a civil lawsuit based on the incident filed by Atty Mark Thomsen, described in this article from MKE JS online:

Nitty has filed a lawsuit alleging a violation of his First Amendment rights, excessive force and racial profiling when Milwaukee County sheriff's deputies threw him to the ground during an arrest on the Hoan Bridge in June.

The Sheriff's Office referred two felony charges of resisting an officer, causing injury, and a misdemeanor count of unlawful assembly to prosecutors. The Milwaukee County District Attorney's Office declined to issue any charges against Nitty.

"We conducted a thorough investigation, the result of which was that the sheriff's reports were refuted by several citizens and in many ways, were just not credible," said attorney Craig Mastantuono, who represented Nitty in that portion of the incident.

“When I first watched the video of the deputies’ unlawful attack on Frank Nitty, I never imagined that it would take filing a lawsuit to get my county’s new leadership's attention or make anti-racist law enforcement a reality here," [Atty Mark] Thomsen told the Journal Sentinel.

----

Keep marching, Frank - we're with you.
#BLM

As part of the lawsuit, Frank Nitty wants the Sheriff's Office to adopt a lengthy anti-racism and anti-discrimination policy.

"Already overcrowded, the population in state-run prisons is rising again after months of decline, though still down sin...
08/12/2020
Evers denies clemency to inmates as high heat, COVID risks raise health concerns

"Already overcrowded, the population in state-run prisons is rising again after months of decline, though still down since the beginning of the year. More than 21,000 adults are held in buildings designed to house fewer than 18,000."

We fully support looking at reasonable emergency clemency options to ease overcrowding in this pandemic crisis.

State officials reject requests for compassionate relief amid concerns about the coronavirus and the summer heat.

Gov. Evers pardons 18 people who made poor decisions in their youth, but who have turned their lives around to find succ...
07/16/2020
BREAKING: Gov. Evers announces 18 pardons

Gov. Evers pardons 18 people who made poor decisions in their youth, but who have turned their lives around to find success. This is exactly the type of action our community needs to heal and help support people who strive to do better.

Gov. Tony Evers granted pardons this week to eighteen people, according to an announcement from the governor's office.

WI Governor Tony Evers announces support for a package of legislation including a ban on police chokeholds, no-knock sea...
06/19/2020
Gov. Tony Evers calls for ban on police chokeholds and no-knock warrants in Juneteenth announcement

WI Governor Tony Evers announces support for a package of legislation including a ban on police chokeholds, no-knock search warrants, and making it harder for bad officers to move to other police jobs.

“Our country promises the opportunity of justice and equity, and it’s time for us to deliver on that promise,” Evers said in a statement. “This legislation is a first step toward dismantling the systems we’ve created, but it can only be a first step. Racism and racial disparities can’t be solved with any single bill or package of bills, or person — it’s on all of us, together."

M&C Law fully supports these steps in the right direction, and encourages further action to eliminate systemic racial inequality in our criminal justice system.

Gov. Tony Evers and Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes unveiled drafts of nine bills, including ones that would ban police chokeholds and no-knock warrants.

George Floyd's tragic murder has brought eradication of racism to the forefront of social consciousness. Our firm has ad...
06/09/2020

George Floyd's tragic murder has brought eradication of racism to the forefront of social consciousness. Our firm has addressed racial inequality in the justice system for years in our public outreach and blog, and we are hopeful that a larger conversation will lead to sustained change.

Inequities result from many decision touch points in the system from case investigation and police intervention through sentencing. A more diverse state court bench is a factor. Craig was asked to comment on this for MKE's WTMJ Ch. 4. Take a look here.

Courts across Wisconsin are using Zoom to conduct hearings. Make sure you're prepared with our tips.
05/28/2020
How To: Appear in Court by Zoom | Mastantuono & Coffee SC

Courts across Wisconsin are using Zoom to conduct hearings. Make sure you're prepared with our tips.

Court hearings will continue to take place through Zoom where possible. Mastantuono & Coffee has conducted many of these hearings, and we have developed recomme

This defender has, sadly, the right take on this weekend's ridiculous situation in Central Park, familiar to any experie...
05/27/2020
Opinion | I’m a public defender in Manhattan. The Central Park video is all too familiar.

This defender has, sadly, the right take on this weekend's ridiculous situation in Central Park, familiar to any experienced criminal defense attorney anywhere.

"A white person calls the police on a black man. The police arrive and take the side of his white accuser, refusing to believe his version of events. He is arrested and arraigned. An outrageous bail amount is set. His family can’t afford to buy his freedom. He gets sent to Rikers Island, where he sits for days, months or sometimes years."

"In cases I’ve taken to trial, the district attorney has offered recordings of 'hysterical 911 calls' as evidence of my clients’ guilt, urging the jury to 'just listen to the fear in her voice,' saying, 'You can tell she can sense a threat,' and asking questions such as, 'Why would she lie?' All too often, it works."

An ugly incident between a birdwatcher and dog walker shows there needs to be accountability for playing the privilege card.

Attorneys say a waiver might not give a business absolute protection when people are learning new things each day about ...
05/15/2020
New normal: COVID-19 waivers

Attorneys say a waiver might not give a business absolute protection when people are learning new things each day about the fast-spreading virus. "I don't know that salon owners, or myself, are able to determine now what the extent of risk is and how to ask a customer to knowingly waive that," attorney Craig Mastantuono said.

With many salons and barbershops reopening, a new normal for clients will be signing waivers.

04/30/2020
EXPO - EX-incarcerated People Organizing

If you missed Craig speaking at the EXPO Week of Action Webinar last night - check out this clip on the incarceration crisis in WI. Thanks for your work, EXPO!

The team at M&C Law continues to advocate for our clients. Call us - we're available for a free consultation.
04/24/2020

The team at M&C Law continues to advocate for our clients. Call us - we're available for a free consultation.

Address

219 N Milwaukee St, Ste 520
Milwaukee, WI
53202

Bus: Milwaukee & Buffalo stop, or Milwaukee & Chicago stop.

General information

Are you, a family member, or friend charged with a crime? At Mastantuono & Coffee, we speak with people everyday who are put in this frightening situation. The criminal justice system is unfamiliar to our clients, but it is our area of expertise. In other words, while you may not have been through this before, we have – thousands of times. Mastantuono & Coffee is a criminal defense law firm with an esteemed reputation in the greater Milwaukee County and Waukesha County region, and throughout Wisconsin. The attorneys at Mastantuono & Coffee take a dynamic and innovative approach to representing clients and creating positive results. We handle all criminal cases, from felony and misdemeanor charges to traffic and OWI/DUI cases, in state and federal courts. We also conduct negotiations with police and government officials during investigations and before court cases are charged, in addition to crisis management and advocacy for individuals and organizations. Our proven track record at winning cases and negotiations throughout Wisconsin has earned us the respect of our peers, resulting in valued recognition in the legal community. Call us – we'll use our experience and reputations to guide you through your legal problem.

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