Unit Contact Information
Criminal Clerk: Jasmine Schwerma (920) 683-4028
Criminal Clerk: Kristy Schiffer (920) 683-4497
Text Message Reminders
Sign up to receive text message reminders for upcoming court hearings.
(available to case parties, victims and witnesses)
Drop off or mail completed form to Clerk of Court office.
·Messages will be sent at 6:00 p.m. two days prior to any scheduled court activity
·Messages will not be sent on holidays or weekends
·Ad Hoc messaging can be done by court staff to advise parties of cancellations
·Text messages are supplemental notifications, provided as a convenience for customers
who elect the service
Criminal Intake Information
Criminal intake court is held on Monday afternoons. Felony cases or cases involving defendants in custody are heard commencing at 1:30 p.m., followed by misdemeanor cases commencing at approximately at 2:30 p.m. Starting on 9-17-20 through the end of 2020, in an effort to control the number of individuals who have to be present in the courthouse, criminal intake is being split out into two separate days, with criminal felony intake being held on Monday afternoons commencing at 1:30 p.m. (before the intake judge); and criminal misdemeanor intake being held on Thursdays commencing at 11:00 a.m. (before Commissioner Pat Koppa).
The judges are on a monthly rotation for intake. The Branch 1 judge presides over intake for January, April, July and October. The Branch 2 judge presides over intake for February, May, August, and November. The Branch 3 judge presides over intake for March, June, September and December. Criminal intake hearings are open to the public.
If you are scheduled for an initial appearance in criminal intake and are unable to appear for any reason, it is your responsibility to contact the judicial assistant for the judge presiding over intake to advise of the reason to see if the court will approve and grant an adjournment.
Your failure to appear for a criminal initial appearance will result in a warrant being issued for your arrest and possible forfeiture of bail.
If you want to be represented by a public defender, you must contact the State Public Defender’s office prior to your initial appearance date. If the Public Defender’s office determines that you do not qualify for a public defender, the court can appoint counsel to represent you. You must bring the rejection paperwork from the Public Defender to the Clerk of Court office to request court appointed counsel. The State Public Defender’s office is located at 927 South 8th Street, Ste. 304, Manitowoc, and their phone number is (920)683-4690.
[NOTE: Effective January 1, 2020, the State budget raised the private bar rate for State Public Defender appointments from $40.00/hr to $70.00/hr.]
Bail Hearing Information
Bail hearings are held daily by videoconference, Monday through Friday, except for holidays, commencing at 12:45 p.m. in the B-15 courtroom, located in the lower level of the courthouse.
A court commissioner presides over bail hearings. Bail hearings are open to the public.
If you failed to appear at any mandatory court appearance which resulted in a warrant being issued for your arrest, you can turn yourself in by 9:00 a.m., Monday through Friday (excluding holidays) at the Manitowoc County Jail to be eligible for a bail hearing that same day.
If you wish to post bail for a defendant, you can do so at the Clerk of Court office during normal business hours Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. Bail can be paid by cash (no dollar limit), money order or cashier’s check (not to exceed $1,000), debit or credit card (convenience fee will apply), or a wire transfer for large dollar amounts (wire transfer fee will apply). No personal checks are accepted. Contact the Clerk of Court office for specific restrictions which may apply. Bail can be posted outside of normal business hours at the Manitowoc County Jail, however, limited types of payment can be accepted at the Jail. Contact the jail directly for additional information.
If you post bail with insufficient funds, the District Attorney will be notified and a warrant will be issued for the defendant’s arrest, and the defendant may face additional charges of bail jumping. Checks returned as insufficient funds are subject to a $20.00 NSF fee from Manitowoc County.
Persons posting cash bail will be required to sign a Notice to Party Furnishing Cash Bail Bond, to advise them of how the cash bail may be applied, as well as the possibility of it being forfeited if the defendant fails to appear for scheduled court appearances. Any refund of cash bail is returned to the person who posted the bail, except as ordered by the Court. It is important for any person who posts cash bail to keep the Clerk of Court advised of any change of address.
If you need an interpreter, you need to advise the Clerk of Court office prior to your scheduled hearing, so arrangements can be made to have an interpreter available for your hearing.
Court Appointed Counsel
Court Appointed Counsel Fee Policy
General overview of the Manitowoc County policy for court appointed counsel.
Court Appointed Counsel Petition and Order for Payment (rev. 4-25-18)
This form is required for all Petitions for Payment of Court Appointed Counsel Fees in Manitowoc County.
The form is a password protected Word fillable form. Billing rate for court appointed counsel is $70.00/hr.
Payment plans are available to pay the balance in monthly installments. Statutory interest will be charged
on any unpaid balance until paid in full. [NOTE: Effective January 1, 2020, the compensation rate for
court appointed counsel will increase from $70.00/hr to $100.00/hr. per SCR 81.02(1), for all court appointed
counsel cases, not just on new appointments]
IRS Form W-9 required to be on file for Comptroller to make payment.
Criminal Records Questions and Answers DOJ brochure
Fingerprint Record Removal Request Form (DJ-LE-250B)
Expungement of DNA
Criteria for determining DNA expungement
Instructions and Request to Expunge DNA for Wisconsin Database DOJ forms
Collection of Crime Victim Restitution
Application for Collecting Crime Victim Restitution (Manitowoc County form rev. 5-31-22)
Complete and submit to Clerk of Court to use tax intercept to collect crime victim restitution.
Interest is not allowed on a restitution award.
Victims – Enforcement of Rights
Victims may hire attorneys
•Victim attorneys may opt in to efiled case for adult cases, but not juvenile
(will not be charged $20 efiling fee)
in juvenile case, Victim Attorney can be added as (VA) notice recipient and can non-party efile)
•Pro se victims cannot opt in as an efiling party (may non-party efile)
•Free attorneys for victims provided by Legal Action, Judicare and LOTUS Legal Clinic
•Forms – Request for Remedy on Victim Rights Violation (CR-296) and Order (CR-297)
Do not mark or file exhibits in advance. Exhibits will be marked by clerk, in court, as exhibits are presented during trial to maintain a clean and accurate court record, in proper numerical sequence, allowing for better accountability of all exhibits.
Recommended Guidelines for Court Exhibits (Manitowoc County policy)
Informational resource to provide direction for effectively managing court exhibits at trial
A pardon restores some of a person’s rights that were lost due to a felony conviction (e.g., firearms, voting, obtaining certain licenses, etc.). A pardon does not expunge, erase or seal the person’s criminal record.
To receive a pardon, a person must complete the State of Wisconsin Pardon Application form and submit to the Governor’s office. There is no fee to file a pardon application. For information related to the Governor’s pardon process in Wisconsin, including the application form, please visit the Governor’s website.
To be eligible for a pardon, a person must:
- Have been convicted of a felony;
- Have completed his/her sentence 5 years or more before applying for the pardon;
- Have not been convicted of any new criminal offense since completion of the sentence;
- Not have any pending criminal charges; and
- Not be required to register as a sex offender under §301.45, Wis. Stats.
The Governor’s office is responsible for determining whether someone meets the eligibility criteria to be pardoned. Neither judges nor clerks are responsible for making this determination.
Complete form legibly, including case number(s). Address will be changed only on cases
indicated. Clerk of Court requires all address changes to be given in writing. Submit completed
form to Clerk of Court in person, by mail or by fax.
Expungement of a Criminal Conviction Record
Issue Brief prepared by Peggy Hurley, Staff Attorney, Wisconsin Legislative Council (Jan 2021)
Expungement of Court Records
Helpful Information and Frequently Asked Questions Brochure
Cash Bail Notice – For Party Posting Bail
Notice provided to person posting cash bail regarding application of cash bail, possibility of forfeiture, return of deposit and requirement to keep court advised of any change in address.
Manitowoc County Local Court Rules for county specific criminal procedure information
Jail Roster for Manitowoc County Jail
Warrant List for Manitowoc County, City of Manitowoc PD, City of Two Rivers PD, and Kiel PD
Sex Offender Registry Department of Corrections Official State of Wisconsin Offender Website