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State v. Peters

Wisconsin Supreme Court
665 N.W.2d 171 (2003)


Pamela Peters (defendant) was arrested after shoplifting a videogame system. Peters gave a false name to the police and identified herself as Patricia Panzer, who was the ex-wife of Peters’s husband. The State of Wisconsin (plaintiff) charged her, and Peters sought bail using the false name. The request for bail was supported by a lack of criminal history and a stable address. Based on this evidence, bail was reduced from $20,000 to $10,000 cash with a $10,000 signature bond. The state quickly discovered the deception and sought to increase the bond. Peters did have a history of criminal convictions and other warrants outstanding. Bail was increased to $30,000. The sate amended the charges to include identity theft. Peters moved to dismiss the identity-theft charge, arguing that seeking bail under someone else’s identity was not an act prohibited by the statute. The trial court granted the motion, and the state appealed. The court of appeals certified the question to the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Sykes, J.)

Concurrence (Bablitch, J.)

Concurrence (Abrahamson, C.J.)

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