District attorney’s office argues against Chandler Halderson request to skip sentencing, calling request ‘absurd’

MADISON, Wis. — Prosecutors in the Chandler Halderson murder case are asking the judge presiding over Halderson’s sentencing to deny a request from the defense that Halderson not be required to attend the hearing.

The motion, filed Friday in Dane County Court by defense attorney Catherine Dorl, included an affidavit signed by Halderson making the request. Dorl argued in the motion that Halderson should not be required to attend the sentencing if he waived his right to be present.

“Mr. Halderson consents to be absent from the sentencing hearing in this case. He waives any rights he has to be present, and not only consents but requests to be absent,” Dorl wrote in the motion.

RELATED: Chandler Halderson found guilty on all charges in parents’ murders

However, Deputy District Attorney William Brown, who was one of the chief prosecutors in the case, responded by writing a letter to Judge John Hyland asking that the request be rejected.

“He is a convicted murder (sic), body mutilator, and liar. His request to skip his sentencing hearing is absurd and is an affront to the public’s interest and expectation of its court system,” Brown wrote.

Brown argued while defendants have rights, they are not limitless, and the exceptions to state law allowing defendants not to attend their sentencing do not apply to this case.

“The defendant has no right to simply skip court hearings that might be uncomfortable or to avoid finally being held responsible for his behavior.”

Halderson was convicted of killing and dismembering the bodies of his parents, Bart and Krista Halderson, during 4th of July weekend in 2021. Jurors deliberated for about two hours before reaching a verdict, following eight days of testimony from witnesses called by the prosecution. Halderson declined to take the stand, and his defense called no witnesses during the trial.

As of Monday afternoon, Judge Hyland has not yet ruled on the motion from Halderson’s defense team. Judge Hyland’s office tells News 3 Now he will make a ruling “sometime this week” before the sentencing hearing.

Halderson’s sentencing hearing is scheduled for Thursday, March 17 at 1:30 p.m. Since he was convicted of first-degree intentional homicide, Halderson faces a mandatory life sentence, but could still be granted the possibility of parole.

You can watch the entire sentencing hearing on Channel3000.com, Channel3000+ streaming apps and on the Channel3000 YouTube and Facebook pages. You can also get up to speed on the case on our Chandler Halderson Trial page and re-watch every day of the trial on our YouTube page.