Joel A. Mogren
Attorney at Law
When experience counts 

111 East Wisconsin Avenue
Suite 1925
Milwaukee, WI 53202
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414.326.3261

Why the stranger who tells the story matters. 

News coverage of cases handled by Attorney Mogren.

2 men charged in killing of twenty-four year old

By:  Gitte Laasby

Source:  Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Two north side men were charged Tuesday with felony murder, party to a crime, on accusations that they robbed and killed a 24-year-old Milwaukee man whose rap beats apparently weren't up to snuff.

According to a criminal complaint:

Jorge Michael Martinez, 24, told police detectives that he was a member of a rap group and previously had purchased some rap music from Andrew D. Tyler to use with his lyrics. Martinez paid $450 cash, a video game console and some video games for some beats. He later decided the beats "were not good and that he had gone to the victim's apartment to 'get what was mine,' " the complaint states.

On Dec. 5, Martinez and Rowlando Davis, 24, walked into Tyler's apartment in the 4400 block of N. 50th St. through an unlocked door to steal the video console, a laptop and some other items. While they were ransacking the apartment, Tyler came home.

Martinez confronted him and asked for money. When Tyler said he had none, Davis started wrestling with him and fired gunshots - one of them a fatal gunshot wound to Tyler's lower abdomen. The suspects fled.

Martinez took a bus to Atlanta, where he met a friend to whom he confessed.

Both suspects were arrested at the end of December and are being held in the Milwaukee County Jail - Martinez on $400,000 cash bond and Davis on $200,000 cash bond.

They each face up to 30 years in prison and $50,000 in fines if convicted.

Man gets 35 years for killing during burglary

By:  Bruce Vielmetti

Source:  Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

The chokes and sniffles of two dozen people provided a second soundtrack Friday to a courtroom slide show about Andrew Tyler, a son, brother and father gunned down in his apartment in the 4400 block of N. 50th St. last winter during a home invasion burglary.

When it was over, the attorney for the convicted killer could only offer condolences and note that if Jorge Michael Martinez had the same loving, supportive family he probably wouldn't be waiting to learn how much of his remaining life would be spent in prison.

Martinez, 25, was convicted at a trial in July of first-degree reckless homicide and burglary while armed with a dangerous weapon. A co-defendant testified that Martinez felt he'd been cheated in a $450 purchase of music beats from Tyler, 24, and was attempting to steal back a game console, computer and other items when Tyler and his girlfriend came home unexpectedly Dec. 5.

Martinez demanded money, and Tyler offered all he had - a twenty dollar bill - and began to back up when he was shot multiple times.

"It was so wrong on so many levels," said Milwaukee County Circuit Judge Rebecca Dallet, starting with the notion that theft was the answer to a business dispute, and ending with decision to carry - and use - a gun.

Martinez continues to deny he pulled the trigger, but Dallet called his story of a third man suddenly appearing "preposterous" and said his girlfriend and other supposed alibi witnesses obviously lied. She also noted how Martinez fled to Atlanta under an assumed name after the crime.

Adding it all on top of Martinez's prior record of property crimes called for a sentence well beyond the 20 years his lawyers recommended, Dallet said. She sentenced him to 35 years, plus 15 more on extended supervision after prison, plus a concurrent term of seven years for the burglary.

"I think you're a danger to the community," she said, to murmurs of "thank you" from Tyler's family.

His mother, uncle, cousin and a friend all gave statements about how giving and loving Tyler had been to them and others. Several people left the courtroom at different times when they became too emotional.

A public defender's office investigator who worked on Martinez's case said he had been abused by his alcoholic father, who died in a drunken driving crash in 1995, and that his mother and sisters had moved to Puerto Rico and stopped contact. His brother had come for the sentencing but had to leave when it was postponed more than two hours.

Further, she said, her client had been robbed and shot when he was 12.

"He's endured a lot of trauma," she said, without ever getting psychological treatment.

His attorney, Louis Epps, noted that before crime, Martinez had two jobs, was in a steady relationship and had no prior gun offenses. He said Martinez wasn't as bright as his co-defendant, Rowlando Davis.

Davis, 25, pleaded guilty in June to a reduced charge of burglary and testified against Martinez. Davis was sentenced to four years in prison and four years of extended supervision.

Martinez declined to make any statement during his sentencing.

The victim's family has disputed his story about buying music beats from Tyler, saying Tyler was not into music in that way.

Assistant District Attorney Kevin Shomin said they may never know the real story.

"Mr. Martinez has never been completely truthful," Shomin told Dallet, noting that he still claims either Davis or a third person fired the fatal shots.

"I don't know who Mr. Martinez is trying to fool," he said. "Maybe himself."