Man convicted of threatening to kidnap, murder Judge Philip Reinhard

June 29, 2011

Staff Report

John J. Miller, 50, formerly of Milwaukee, was convicted June 22 following a jury trial for threatening to kidnap and murder U.S. District Judge Philip G. Reinhard of the Northern District of Illinois sitting at Rockford.

The trial, though prosecuted by the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, was held in federal court in Madison, Wis. Miller faces a sentence of up to 10 years in federal prison. The sentencing is scheduled for Sept. 7, 2011, before the Honorable William M. Conley, U.S. District Judge for the Western District of Wisconsin.

In convicting Miller of the charge, the jury found that on Feb. 16, 2011, he both threatened to kidnap and murder Judge Reinhard in retaliation for actions the judge took in connection with a previous criminal case of Miller’s in which he presided.

Evidence at trial showed Miller made the threats after several failed attempts to get Judge Reinhard removed from Miller’s case.

Judge Reinhard had been assigned the case from the Eastern District of Wisconsin in 2008 after federal judges in Milwaukee and Green Bay were threatened.

The actions Judge Reinhard took in the previous case included sentencing Miller to 40 months in prison after a plea of guilty to two charges of making threats.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen A. Ingraham..

From the June 29-July 5, 2011 issue

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