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In May 2022, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled in Doubeck v. Kaul that people with misdemeanor disorderly conduct convictions can obtain concealed carry gun permits — even when the incidents involve domestic violence. 

According to federal law, people convicted of a “misdemeanor crime of domestic violence” are not allowed to possess a gun. In intrepreting this statute, the Wisconsin Supreme Court found that a disorderly conduct conviction in Wisconsin is not equivalent since there are non-violent types of disorderly conduct. State law defines it as “violent, abusive, indecent, profane, boisterous, unreasonably loud or otherwise disorderly conduct in which the conduct tends to cause or provoke a disturbance.”

The court’s ruling was unanimous, but in a concurring opinion, liberal Justice Jill Karofsky urged the Wisconsin State Legislature to close what she called a “dangerous loophole” in the state law that produced the case. 


Wisconsin Courts: Doubek v. Kaul Opinion

PBS Wisconsin: Domestic abuse and concealed carry in Wisconsin

Wisconsin Public Radio: Wisconsin justice blasts ‘dangerous’ law allowing gun permits for those with domestic abuse history

State Bar of Wisconsin: Wisconsin Lawyer: Supreme Court Digest

Wisconsin State Legislature: Disorderly Conduct Statute

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Erin Gretzinger / Wisconsin WatchReporting Intern

Erin Gretzinger joined Wisconsin Watch as a reporting intern in May 2022. She is a journalism and French major at UW-Madison and will graduate in spring 2023. Erin previously worked for the Wisconsin State Journal as a reporting intern and served as the 2021-22 editor-in-chief at The Badger Herald. She is a recipient of the Jon Wolman Scholarship, the Sigrid Schultz Scholarship and the Joseph Sicherman Award Fund for her academic and reporting work.