2011 Wisconsin Code
Chapter 946. Crimes against government and its administration.
946.31 Perjury.


946.31 Perjury.


(1) Whoever under oath or affirmation orally makes a false material statement which the person does not believe to be true, in any matter, cause, action or proceeding, before any of the following, whether legally constituted or exercising powers as if legally constituted, is guilty of a Class H felony:


(a) A court;


(b) A magistrate;


(c) A judge, referee or court commissioner;


(d) An administrative agency or arbitrator authorized by statute to determine issues of fact;


(e) A notary public while taking testimony for use in an action or proceeding pending in court;


(f) An officer authorized to conduct inquests of the dead;


(g) A grand jury;


(h) A legislative body or committee.


(2) It is not a defense to a prosecution under this section that the perjured testimony was corrected or retracted.

946.31 - ANNOT.

History: 1977 c. 173; 1979 c. 110; 2001 a. 109.

946.31 - ANNOT.

An arbitrator selected from a list provided by WERC is authorized by s. 111.10 to arbitrate as provided in ch. 298 [now ch. 788] and so is "authorized by statute" within meaning of s. 946.31 (1) (d). Layton School of Art & Design v. WERC, 82 Wis. 2d 324, 262 N.W.2d 218 (1978).

946.31 - ANNOT.

Perjury consists of a false statement that the defendant knew was false, was made under oath in a proceeding before a judge, and was material to the proceeding. Materiality is determined by whether the trial court could have relied on the testimony in making a decision, not on whether it actually did. State v. Munz, 198 Wis. 2d 379, 541 N.W.2d 821 (Ct. App. 1995), 95-0635.

946.31 - ANNOT.

A defendant may be charged with multiple counts of perjury based on testimony given in the same proceeding when each charge requires proof of an additional fact that the others do not. State v. Warren, 229 Wis. 2d 172, 599 N.W.2d 431 (Ct. App. 1999), 99-0129.

946.31 - ANNOT.

Issue preclusion does not bar the prosecution of a defendant for perjury who was tried and acquitted on a single issue when newly discovered evidence suggests that the defendant falsely testified on the issue. The state must show that: 1) the evidence came to the state's attention after trial; 2) the state was not negligent in failing to discover the evidence; 3) the evidence is material to the issue; and 4) the evidence is not merely cumulative. State v. Canon, 2001 WI 11, 241 Wis. 2d 164, 622 N.W.2d 270, 98-3519.

946.31 - ANNOT.

Perjury prosecutions after acquittals. Shellenberger. 71 MLR 703 (1988).

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