Bruce Schroeder

American jurist (born c. 1946)

Encyclopedia from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Bruce Schroeder
Judge of the Wisconsin Circuit Court
for the Kenosha Circuit, Branch 3
Assumed office
May 11, 1983
Appointed byTony Earl
Preceded byJohn E. Malloy
District Attorney of Kenosha County, Wisconsin
In office
August 17, 1972 – January 3, 1977
Appointed byPatrick Lucey
Preceded byBurton A. Scott
Succeeded byJohn P. Landa
Personal details
Born
Bruce Edward Schroeder

1945/1946 (age 75–76)
Milwaukee, Wisconsin, U.S.
Political partyDemocratic
Spouse(s)
Donna Lane
(m. 1972)
Alma mater
ProfessionLawyer, judge
Known for

Bruce Edward Schroeder[1] (born c. 1946)[2] is an American lawyer and Wisconsin circuit court judge for Kenosha County. He is the longest-serving state court judge in Wisconsin, having been first appointed in 1983. Earlier in his career he was district attorney of Kenosha County. He came to national attention in 2021 due to his role as the presiding judge for the Kyle Rittenhouse trial.

Early life and political career

Schroeder was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and graduated from Marquette University with a bachelor's degree in history and political science in 1967. He went on to Marquette University Law School and earned his J.D. in 1970.[3] While in college, he was a member of the police force in Whitefish Bay.[4]

Shortly after being admitted to the bar, Schroeder was hired as an assistant district attorney in Kenosha County, Wisconsin, under D.A. Burton A. Scott, and moved to Kenosha to accept the job.[5] As assistant district attorney, Schroeder was Kenosha's first juvenile prosecutor.[6]

Less than two years later, the D.A., Burton Scott, was appointed to a vacant county judge position. The Kenosha County Democratic Party endorsed Schroeder as his replacement.[6] On August 17, 1972, Governor Patrick Lucey appointed Schroeder district attorney to fill the remainder of Scott's term.[3] In the Fall general election that year, Schroeder won election to a full term as D.A., defeating Republican Robert V. Baker in a close race.[7] He was subsequently re-elected in 1974 without opposition.

In the 1974 general election, Kenosha County's state senator, Doug La Follette, was elected Secretary of State of Wisconsin, creating a vacancy. Schroeder entered the Democratic primary race for the April special election,[8] but was defeated by John J. Maurer of Pleasant Prairie in a four-person race.[9] Schroeder did not run for another term as district attorney in 1976. He went into private practice after leaving office.

Schroeder was active in politics with the Democratic Party of Wisconsin through the 1970s, serving as the Kenosha County coordinator for the 1974 re-election campaign of U.S. senator Gaylord Nelson, and for the 1978 gubernatorial campaign of Martin J. Schreiber.[8][10] Due to the 1977 judicial reform laws, a number of new judicial posts were created in Kenosha County in 1978,[11] and at that time Schroeder was named as a likely candidate for one of the new positions.[12] He was not appointed at that time, but served as a court commissioner for the new organization of the Wisconsin circuit courts from 1978 until his elevation in 1983.[13]

Judicial career

In 1983, incumbent Wisconsin circuit court judge John E. Malloy died in office, creating a vacancy. Schroeder was appointed to fill the position by Governor Tony Earl in May 1983,[13] and was subsequently elected to a full six-year term in 1984 without opposition. Since then, Schroeder has been re-elected seven times without facing an opponent, most recently in 2020.[14] He is Wisconsin's longest-serving state court judge.[15]

Schroeder has been the subject of controversy during his judicial career. In 1987, he received attention for his order requiring HIV/AIDS testing for convicted prostitutes.[16] He developed a reputation for being tough on defendants in court and in sentencing. As a result, hundreds of defendants assigned to his court have requested to be transferred to another judge.[17]

Schroeder came to national attention in 2021 for presiding over the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse, who fatally shot two men in self defense during the unrest in Kenosha in August 2020.[15]

Personal life

Schroeder married court clerk Donna Jean Lane on September 30, 1972, at the St. James Catholic Church in Kenosha.[18][19] They have two adopted children,[20] Terrence Michael (born September 11, 1979)[21] and Mary Lynn (born April 20, 1982).[22] Schroeder is a member of the German American Society.[8]

Electoral history

Kenosha County District Attorney (1972, 1974)

Kenosha County District Attorney Election, 1972[7]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
General Election, November 5, 1972
Democratic Bruce E. Schroeder (incumbent) 23,013 52.73%
Republican Robert V. Baker 20,626 47.27%
Plurality 2,387 5.47%
Total votes 43,639 100.0%
Democratic hold

Wisconsin Senate (1975)

Wisconsin Senate, 22nd District Special Election, 1975[9]
Party Candidate Votes % ±%
Democratic Primary, February 18, 1975
Democratic John J. Maurer 5,361 46.01%
Democratic Bruce E. Schroeder 3,976 34.12%
Democratic Michael Zanin 1,425 12.23%
Democratic Gerald F. Bellow 891 7.65%
Plurality 1,385 11.89%
Total votes 11,653 100.0%

Wisconsin Circuit Court (1984–present)

Year Election Date Elected Defeated Total Plurality
1984[23] General April 3 Bruce Schroeder (inc) Nonpartisan 20,400 100.0% 20,400 20,400
1990[24] General April 3 Bruce Schroeder (inc) Nonpartisan 15,478 100.0% 15,478 15,478
1996[25] General March 19 Bruce Schroeder (inc) Nonpartisan 17,102 100.0% 17,102 17,102
2002[26] General April 2 Bruce Schroeder (inc) Nonpartisan 11,927 99.72% 11,960 11,894
2008[27] General April 1 Bruce Schroeder (inc) Nonpartisan 16,926 99.01% 17,095 16,757
2014[28] General April 1 Bruce Schroeder (inc) Nonpartisan 11,507 99.14% 11,607 11,407
2020[14] General April 7 Bruce Schroeder (inc) Nonpartisan 26,063 98.70% 26,406 25,720

References

  1. ^ "Notice of Presidential Preference, Judicial and County Supervisor Election". Kenosha News. November 15, 1983. p. 20. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  2. ^ Vera, Amir (November 11, 2021). "Judge Bruce Schroeder's reputation as a tough jurist comes through in Rittenhouse trial". CNN.
  3. ^ a b "Schroeder appointment as D.A. made official". Kenosha News. August 18, 1972. p. 14. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  4. ^ "Voters to decide four Courthouse contests". Kenosha News. October 30, 1972. p. 29. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  5. ^ "D.A. names an assistant". Kenosha News. January 15, 1971. p. 16. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  6. ^ a b "Bruce Schroeder proposed for DA". Kenosha News. August 15, 1972. p. 1. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  7. ^ a b "4 contested county posts to Democrats". Kenosha News. November 8, 1972. p. 1. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  8. ^ a b c Meyers, Jim (January 9, 1975). "D.A. Bruce Schroeder enters race for 22nd district seat". Kenosha News. p. 33. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  9. ^ a b Theobald, H. Rupert; Robbins, Patricia V., eds. (1975). "Elections" (PDF). The State of Wisconsin 1975 Blue Book (Report). Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau. p. 803. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  10. ^ "Kenoshans form group for Schreiber". Kenosha News. August 17, 1978. p. 22. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  11. ^ Theobald, H. Rupert; Robbins, Patricia V., eds. (1979). "Judiciary" (PDF). The State of Wisconsin 1979-1980 Blue Book (Report). Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau. pp. 658–659. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  12. ^ Jensen, Don (April 7, 1978). "Judge job has them guessing". Kenosha News. p. 1. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  13. ^ a b Henkel, Barbara (May 11, 1983). "Schroeder named judge". Kenosha News. p. 1. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  14. ^ a b Canvass Results for 2020 Spring Election and Presidential Preference Vote - 4/7/2020 (PDF) (Report). Wisconsin Elections Commission. May 4, 2020. p. 5. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  15. ^ a b Bogel-Burroughs, Nicholas (November 11, 2021). "In Scrutinized Kyle Rittenhouse Trial, It's the Judge Commanding Attention". The New York Times.
  16. ^ Enstad, Robert (February 7, 1987). "Judge Urges AIDS Test Challenge". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  17. ^ "Hundreds ask to avoid court of Kenosha judge". Wisconsin State Journal. November 30, 2006. p. 7. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  18. ^ "Mrs. Bruce Schroeder". Kenosha News. October 24, 1972. p. 6. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  19. ^ "Schroeder-Lane". Kenosha News. October 4, 1972. p. 9. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  20. ^ "Schroeder seeks full term". Kenosha News. December 2, 1983. p. 5. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  21. ^ "Adoption". Kenosha News. November 12, 1979. p. 12. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  22. ^ "Adoption". Kenosha News. June 29, 1982. p. 15. Retrieved November 17, 2021 – via Newspapers.com.
  23. ^ Theobald, H. Rupert; Robbins, Patricia V., eds. (1985). "Elections" (PDF). The State of Wisconsin 1985-1986 Blue Book (Report). Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau. p. 881. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  24. ^ Barish, Lawrence S.; Theobald, H. Rupert, eds. (1991). "Elections" (PDF). The State of Wisconsin 1991-1992 Blue Book (Report). Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau. p. 879. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  25. ^ Barish, Lawrence S., ed. (1997). "Elections" (PDF). State of Wisconsin 1997-1998 Blue Book (Report). Wisconsin Legislative Reference Bureau. p. 874. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  26. ^ Results of Spring General Election - 04/02/2002 (PDF) (Report). Wisconsin State Elections Board. May 24, 2002. p. 4. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  27. ^ Results of Spring General Election - 04/01/2008 (PDF) (Report). Wisconsin State Elections Board. April 21, 2008. p. 4. Retrieved November 17, 2021.
  28. ^ Canvass Results for 2014 Spring Election - 4/1/2014 (PDF) (Report). Wisconsin Government Accountability Board. April 15, 2014. p. 4. Retrieved November 17, 2021.

External links

Legal offices
Preceded by District Attorney of Kenosha County, Wisconsin
August 17, 1972 – January 3, 1977
Succeeded by
John P. Landa
Preceded by
John E. Malloy
Wisconsin Circuit Court Judge for the Kenosha circuit, branch 3
May 11, 1983 – present
Incumbent
Original content from Wikipedia, shared with licence Creative Commons By-Sa - Bruce Schroeder