Columbia County, WI Criminal Defense Attorney

Areas of Practice

Wisconsin Criminal Defense Lawyer

Attorney Rick Coad is consistently recognized as one of the top criminal defense attorneys serving Columbia County, WI (Portage and the surrounding area).

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Attorney Rick Coad

Rick Coad has experience in defending most of the charges commonly prosecuted in Wisconsin, and has represented clients in more than twenty different counties, the Wisconsin Court of Appeals, and the United States Supreme Court.

Rick has achieved exceptional results for his clients in Columbia County Circuit Court, located in Portage, WI. He represents clients in a wide range of cases, including drunk driving OWI, Substantial / Misdemeanor Battery, Domestic Battery, Drug Possession & Distribution, Sexual Assault, Fraud, Theft & more. He gives each case the attention it deserves, and works to achieve the best possible result for each of his clients. In recognition of his dedication to his clients and his skill, he has been ranked as a Super Lawyer nine times.

Attorney Rick Coad defends people charged with a misdemeanor or felony in Columbia County, WI and throughout the state of Wisconsin.

Drug Possession / Distribution Defense Lawyer

Drug crime charges in Wisconsin state court range from possession of marijuana, cocaine, MDMA (ecstasy), heroin, or other illegal drugs, to possession with the intent to distribute or sell marijuana, cocaine or other illegal drugs. Rick Coad is a Columbia County, WI criminal defense lawyer who is skilled in defending all drug crime charges. There are several defenses to a drug offense, and these cases can be won at trial, dismissed, or resolved for lesser charges.

Domestic Violence Lawyer

Domestic violence involves a battery against a domestic partner, which includes a girlfriend, boyfriend, wife or husband. Often times, a person may also be charged with domestic disorderly conduct when there is no clear evidence of physical contact. These cases are often nuanced, carry other consequences, such as the prohibition of the possession of firearms. With the help of a skilled attorney, it is possible to get domestic abuse charges reduced or dismissed. Rick Coad is an experienced domestic violence lawyer who serves Columbia County, WI.

Drunk Driving OWI Lawyer

The defense lawyers at Coad Law can successfully defend you in your OWI/DUI drunk driving case in Columbia County, WI. Drunk driving laws laws are complicated, and a lawyer can help you navigate the process to make sure your rights are defended, and you get the best possible result. The most common charges are operating while intoxicated (OWI), operating a motor vehicle with a prohibited alcohol concentration (PAC), and a refusal of a chemical test after the police read the Informing the Accused form. Drunk driving charges may stem from the use of alcohol, marijuana, or other drugs, including prescription drugs.

Substantial Battery / Misdemeanor Battery Lawyer

A battery (assault) is the intentional infliction of physical harm or pain on another without consent. A battery can be charged as a felony or as a misdemeanor. Substantial battery is a felony. It involves some kind of injury to the alleged victim, such as stitches, a broken bone, or the loss of consciousness. Misdemeanor battery can involve the same conduct but without a permanent or lasting injury. There are defenses to these charges. Rick Coad is a Columbia County, WI criminal defense lawyer who is skilled at defending aggravated battery and misdemeanor battery cases.

Sexual Assault Lawyer

Rick Coad is a Columbia County, WI criminal defense lawyer who has defended people charged with sex crimes such as first degree sexual assault, second degree sexual assault, third degree sexual assault, fourth degree sexual assault, sexual assault of a minor (statutory rape) and enticement, among others. Sex crime cases can turn on aggressive investigation, challenging physical evidence, and intensive preparation for trial. Sexual Assault Lawyer Rick Coad understands how to effectively defend these charges. Many of the cases he has defended have resulted in dismissal, or reduced charges.

Fraud Defense Lawyer

Rick Coad is an experienced lawyer in defending people charged with various types of fraud, including forgery, contractor fraud, fraudulent writings, misrepresentation, check fraud, issue worthless checks, and many other fraud crimes in Columbia County, WI. He understands how to defend financial crimes and has a proven track record of success.

Theft Lawyer

Rick Coad is a defense lawyer who represents people charged with petty theft, retail theft & shoplifting. Theft can be charged in a variety of ways, including theft by employees, forgery and embezzlement. Depending on the value of the property taken, theft charges can be a misdemeanor or felony. Rick has represented Columbia County, WI clients in simple retail theft cases, as well as complex forgery and embezzlement cases.

FAQ’s About Wisconsin Criminal Defense:

What should I do if I am arrested?

First, the Grateful Dead were right: “If you’ve got a warrant, I guess you’re gonna come in.” If the police have a warrant to search your home or business, a judge has already decided that there is probable cause that a crime may have been committed and the police have every right to enter and search your home. BUT, that doesn’t mean you have to answer their questions! You have the constitutional right to refuse (we suggest doing so politely) to answer any questions about whether you did anything illegal. It is the rare, 1 in a 100 or 1,000 case where talking to the police will actually help you. Your best approach is to politely decline to answer any questions without a lawyer present. They may try a second or third time, but your answer is the same: I won’t answer any questions without a lawyer present. Eventually, they’ll give up. They may even say: “look, we’ll have to arrest you if we don’t know your side of the story.” But guess what? If they say that, they’re going to arrest you anyway. So, stand on your constitutional right to remain silent, and contact an experienced defense lawyer.

Can I Post Bail?

In Wisconsin, if you are arrested for a misdemeanor you can post cash bail and be released. If you are arrested for a felony then you will be kept in custody until you make an initial appearance in front of a judge, and the judge will either set cash bail or order you released on a signature bond (that doesn’t require you to post cash). But that usually is within a day or two of your arrest.

What are the types of crimes in Wisconsin?

In Wisconsin there are basically two levels of crimes: felony and misdemeanor. Wis. Stat. Section 939.50 classifies certain offenses as misdemeanors and some as felonies. There are three types of misdemeanors: Class A, Class B, or Class C. Class A misdemeanors are punishable by a term of imprisonment not to exceed 9 months. That includes most misdemeanor offenses like battery, theft, OWI’s (second to fourth offenses), obstructing justice, resisting arrest, domestic battery, and many others. The most common Class B misdemeanor, which is punishable by a term of imprisonment not to exceed 90 days, is disorderly conduct and domestic disorderly conduct. “Imprisonment” for misdemeanors almost always means jail time, not actual prison time.

The difference between a misdemeanor and felony in Wisconsin is that for a felony offense you can be imprisoned for more than a year. For felony offenses that means you can actually be put in prison, not just jail. And the sentences range from a year and a day to life imprison for homicide. Typical felony charges include fraud, drug distribution, drug possession, substantial battery, theft (like retail theft of $500 or more), and sexual assault.

What should you look for when hiring a criminal defense attorney?

The answer to this question comes down to experience and results. And that translates to a reputation in the legal community. Here at Coad Law Office, we have decades of experience and have been recognized as some of the best criminal defense attorneys in Wisconsin. You want to hire a lawyer who has seen your type of case many, many times, and has gotten results for his clients. So focus your questions on those areas.

How can a lawyer aggressively defend me?

Your defense lawyer doesn’t have to froth at the mouth to aggressively defend you. Again, it comes down to experience, skill, and a reputation that will get you your best result. Sometimes that means filing motions to suppress evidence, and taking a case to trial. It always means paying attention to the details of your case and your story and thoroughly investigating your case. Other times it means using experience and judgment to negotiate the best possible outcome for you and to minimize your risks. We know what to do, when to do it, and how to get you to your best result.

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