GOVERNOR’S PARDONS & GUN RIGHTS IN WISCONSIN: IS THERE A SECOND CHANCE?
March 25, 2013
You’re 72. You were convicted in Wisconsin of a non-violent felony 38 years ago, paid your penalty, and never messed up again. Now you would like to hunt with your grandson, but you cannot carry a firearm because of your conviction, so you apply for a pardon from the Governor. Used to be, this was an uphill climb, but with the current Governor, it’s an impossibility. This story highlights the Governor’s refusal to engage the official business of a pardon commission.
The above is just an example of a recent call we received. At Mastantuono Law Office, we routinely get calls like this from people all over Wisconsin, from Waukesha, Washington, Ozaukee, and Milwaukee County. They call criminal attorneys because they were convicted of a felony in their past, and have many many years of good citizenship between now and the time they made their mistake. They want to become gun owners again. They want their good name restored. They want to apply for a new job or take advantage of an employment opportunity. Opportunities to remove a felony from your record in Wisconsin have always been rare, but the Governor’s failure to set up a pardon commission makes it literally impossible. Cases exist where people in Wisconsin deserve a second chance, but this Governor apparently does not think so, and that’s too bad. This is unprecedented in recent memory.
We will update our blog audience if this situation changes.