Rittenhouse judge has a history of jackassery that goes back over 30 years

As Kenosha News reports, in 2018, Schroeder revived a practice centuries out of date when he ordered that a woman convicted of retail theft be punished with “public shaming.” Schroeder sentenced Milwaukee resident Markea Brown to 15 months in prison, and during the two years that followed, he charged her with the responsibility that every time she entered a store, she had to “notify management at the service desk that she is on supervision for retail theft.”

Schroeder informed Brown that while he couldn’t “put her in the stocks,” he could still see that she was “embarrassed and humiliated.”

The sentence was overturned on appeal, with the appellate court declaring, “We are not persuaded that embarrassing or humiliating defendants with a state-imposed broad public notification requirement promotes their rehabilitation.”

This was far from the first time. As Madison.com made clear in 2006, “The reputation of one Kenosha County circuit judge is apparently so daunting that hundreds of defendants request a different judge, creating imbalances in the workloads of different felony courts.” 

Schroeder’s reputation wasn’t daunting in that he uniformly gave harsher punishments. It was daunting in the sense that he was, according to one defense attorney, “unpredictable.” So many cases were moved out of Schroeder’s courtroom that it created a backlog of cases for other judges.

And if that’s not a long enough history of his unusual behavior, there’s this from the 1987 Chicago Tribune.

So far, Schroeder has ordered testing for the AIDS virus and other venereal diseases for three women convicted in his court of prostitution. The tests were made as a condition of their probation, the judge said.

Schroeder said that he hoped his “unusual orders” would be challenged by libertarians, ”and I hope they lose.”

They were. They didn’t.

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