ICYMI: Jill Karofsky Doesn’t Care What the Department of Corrections Recommends When Sentencing Hardened Criminals

March 28, 2020

[Madison, WI] – In case you missed it, Jill Karofsky admitted in open court that she does not think the Department of Corrections expert opinion is relevant when making sentencing decisions. Furthermore, Karofsky said she usually doesn’t take the time to remember what the Department of Corrections recommends.

Karofsky admitted her careless attitude toward the Department of Corrections’ recommendations when she let a man convicted of first degree reckless homicide off with two years behind bars when he faced 40 years in prison. The Department of Corrections recommended a different sentence, but Karofsky said she doesn’t even pay attention to the expert opinion of the Department of Corrections. 

In situations such as these, the Department of Corrections makes their sentencing recommendation after compiling an extensive pre-sentencing investigation (PSI) to help inform the judge ahead of the sentencing hearing. Jill Karosfky’s distaste for any opinion other than her own further calls into question her ability to serve as a Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice. Not only does Karofsky let hardened criminals off easy time and again, she doesn’t even care what the experts have to say about it.

Time and again, Jill Karofsky has demonstrated that she has no interest in keeping Wisconsin communities and families safe. Instead, she sees letting criminals off easy as a way to advance the social justice warrior agenda she wants to bring to the Wisconsin Supreme Court.

Read the full write up here, or read excerpts below. 

The Karofsky Case Files: Kendall Ragland
WISN 1130
Dan O’Donnell
March 19, 2020

Wisconsin Supreme Court candidate and Dane County Circuit Court judge Jill Karofsky ignored Department of Corrections guidelines and gave a heroin dealer whose product killed a man just two years in prison when he could have faced 40.

Kendall Ragland, 41, was charged with first degree reckless homicide, second or subsequent offense, in 2018 in connection with the death of a man who overdosed on heroin he purchased from Ragland in 2015.

Ragland was a well-known drug dealer who has been in trouble with the law literally his entire adult life. From almost the moment he turned 18 in 1997, he has been convicted of possession of TCH with intent to deliver, resisting an officer, illegally carrying a concealed weapon, bail jumping, possession of cocaine with intent to deliver, domestic violence battery, criminal damage to property, and possession of heroin.

Despite his lengthy criminal record and his refusal to admit guilt on the reckless homicide charge (which carried a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison and $100,000 in fines), Judge Karofsky sentenced him to just two years in prison and two more on extended supervision as part of his “no contest” plea.

Disturbingly, Karofsky said during the sentencing hearing that while she knew that her extremely lenient sentence went against the Wisconsin Department of Corrections’ recommendation, she didn’t much care.

“Let’s not worry about the recommendation,” she said. “I will tell you that I don’t put a lot of weight on the recommendation of the Department of Corrections. I feel like that’s my job.”

She reiterated this later in the hearing.

“I’ve said it once in this hearing and I will say it again: I really don’t pay any attention to what the Department of Corrections recommends in PSIs [pre-sentence investigations],” she said. “Often, if I do look at it, I forget what the number is, quite frankly, by the end of the hearing or even by the time the hearing starts if I’ve looked at it in days prior to a hearing. As I sit here right now, I couldn’t tell you what it is.”