Supreme Court rules in evidence destruction case
Wisconsin Supreme Court says lower court can't order destruction of investigative report
MADISON, Wis. — The Wisconsin Supreme Court says lower courts do not have the authority to order the destruction of presentence investigative reports.
The court ruled Thursday in a case of Brandon Melton, who pleaded guilty in 2009 to second-degree sexual assault of a child and theft, both felonies.
A Waukesha County circuit court ordered a presentence investigative report to assist in his sentencing. Melton disputed some of the information in the report, so the judge ordered that the first one be destroyed after the expiration of any time limits for appeal.
A state appeals court upheld that decision, but the Supreme Court on Thursday said courts don’t have the authority to order such reports to be destroyed.
The court says in unusual cases a corrected report can be prepared.