Buting ,Williams & Stilling ,S.C. | A Criminal Defense Law Firm

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Firm Overview

Buting, Williams & Stilling, S.C., in Brookfield and Glendale, Wisconsin, was founded 25 years ago by a team of experienced lawyers to defend people accused of serious criminal charges throughout the state. From homicide to drunk driving charges, you can count on us to fight for your rights. If you are accused of a crime or have already been convicted and are seeking an appeal, contact us for a free initial consultation.

We are not afraid to take difficult or challenging cases that other lawyers refuse to accept. We have won cases on appeal after others were unsuccessful. Most often, other lawyers refer a case to us because they have come to regard our firm as one of the most accomplished in the state. We have earned recognition as “Leading American Attorneys,” a distinction awarded to only 6 percent of all attorneys. The lawyers at Buting, Williams & Stilling, S.C., were selected for inclusion on the Super Lawyers list for the years 2005 through 2019. Milwaukee Magazine has also recognized us as “among the best” criminal trial attorneys.

Criminal Lawyers Representing Clients In Milwaukee, In Waukesha County And Throughout Southeast Wisconsin

We focus our practice on the cutting edge of legal issues. Our firm employs creative legal strategies to defend you against serious criminal charges, and we are capable of dealing with complex DNA evidence in your case. In one instance, we persuaded the Wisconsin Supreme Court to overturn a 25-year-old homicide conviction based largely on new DNA testing done by the defense. In another case, we obtained the dismissal of a vehicular homicide while intoxicated charge by using DNA evidence to prove the defendant was not the driver. We have successfully employed other forensic science in clients’ defense, including blood spatter evidence, forensic pathology on bullet or stab wounds, arson evidence, forensic psychiatry and psychology, and gas chromatography.

  • Jerome F. Buting: One of our firm’s partners is an accomplished criminal defense attorney, past president of the Wisconsin Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (WACDL) and a former board member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL). He was a member of the board of directors of the Wisconsin State Bar Criminal Law Section from 1998 to 2018 and was chair of the section from 2005 to 2007. He also sits on the Wisconsin Criminal Justice Study Commission, jointly sponsored by the University of Wisconsin Law School, Marquette University Law School and the State Bar of Wisconsin. The commission is an ongoing panel of law and lay leaders from around the state studying areas of the criminal justice system in need of reform.
  • Dudley A. Williams: Another partner of our firm has been practicing criminal defense throughout the state for over 35 years. He is a member of the Wisconsin Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and one of the leading drunk driving defense attorneys in Wisconsin. He is a frequent speaker at continuing legal education programs for lawyers. He has been recognized as one of the best criminal defense attorneys by Milwaukee Magazine and by Wisconsin Super Lawyers magazine from 2005 to 2019.
  • Kathleen B. Stilling: Attorney Stilling, also a partner, returned to the firm in 2011 after serving a term as a Waukesha County Circuit Court Judge, where her legal knowledge and professionalism were widely recognized. As a judge, Attorney Stilling presided over criminal jury trials, motion hearings, sentencing hearings and post-conviction cases. She received her undergraduate degree and her law degree from the University of Wisconsin. She is a founding member and past president of the Wisconsin Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and a member of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers and the Association for Women Lawyers. Attorney Stilling was an assistant state public defender in the Milwaukee trial office from 1981 to 1989 and her current private practice is entirely criminal defense, both trials and appeals. She defends adult and juvenile clients in cases involving sexual offenses, drugs, alcohol and domestic violence. She lectures in the areas of sexual assault, ethics and trial practice.  Her first article published in The Champion, 2015, has become a popular primer on defense in child sex cases. Her follow-up article, co-authored with Attorney Jerome Buting, was published in the Champion, 2016. WISN radio host Mark Belling called her the “go-to lawyer in the state of Wisconsin” for child sex cases. (air date: July 12, 2010)

If you need to speak to one of our experienced criminal trial lawyers about your case, contact Buting, Williams & Stilling, S.C., to schedule a free initial consultation.


Practice Areas

“I just want to say thank you for the outstanding work you have done for him and let you know how much we appreciate the time and attention you gave to his case. We are obviously overjoyed by today’s dismissal!” (Child pornography case dismissed after motion to suppress was granted)”

“After having had time to exhale, we thank each one of you and all the others who contributed to the exemplary Supreme Court presentation. We are proud of your efforts on our behalf and, equally important, on behalf of the many present and future defendants statewide.” (Client’s comment after Supreme Court oral argument)

“Thank you. Thank you. I am so pleased to hear that we won. It doesn’t seem that it was even a close call. I appreciate your efforts.” (Oconto County defendant after Buting, Williams & Stilling got his prison sentence overturned in the court of appeals) ”

“Your time and advice was appreciated more than words can express at a time when we really needed someone to guide us.” (Client)

“The outcome was amazing, one unavailable even under identical circumstances in probably 98 percent of federal courtrooms around the country. Separate and apart from the outcome, though, I am supremely impressed by your efforts on your client’s behalf. Your comments in support of the requested sentence were perfect in tone and, having now reviewed the extensive sentencing memorandum you filed, your work in that regard was exemplary as well. Your client was certainly fortunate to have you as his attorney.” (Local federal court attorney present at a sentencing)

“I can’t thank you enough, not only for all of the tireless work that you and your staff put into my case, but for telling me what I needed to hear, at a time when I absolutely had to hear it. I consider myself blessed for everything turning out the way it did, especially since I blindly picked you out of a phone book! You helped me, my family and friends in many more ways than the money ever could.” (Child pornography client)

“I think you will find that in any circles where Kathy’s name is raised, people will always respond positively and identify her as an extremely hardworking, knowledgeable and ethical lawyer who is timely and effective with any endeavor she takes on. These circles would include colleagues, friends, prosecutors, judges, professors and others who have crossed paths with Kathy. They would also include the many lawyers like me who have referred numerous cases to Kathy, invariably with positive feedback from the clients regarding her knowledge of their case, empathy, professionalism and fair-mindedness in addressing their concerns.” (Fellow attorney)

“Thank you for giving [our son] back to us. Wonderful work!” (Family of client accused of armed robbery after charges were dismissed)

“Yes, His perfect time and perfect place, you were a part of this plan. I almost didn’t hire you, but I took a step of faith trusting Him and look what happened? Praise God. Our Lord put you in your vocation for a reason, continue to help those He brings your way. May He bless you in ALL you do!” (Client who was wrongfully convicted of sexual assault in a northwestern Wisconsin county. He was released from prison after attorneys got his conviction reversed.)

“I really cannot thank you enough for your past help. You really know your stuff. It is actually funny when I think about my other past attorney’s knowledge and then when I talk with you. It’s like night and day. You’re like a walking book of knowledge with a purpose-driven life. Thanks.” (Brown County client of attorney Buting)

“A year later and I still believe your defense is the single best example of lawyering I have ever seen.” (Television reporter commenting on attorney Buting’s defense of Steven Avery)

“You have a certain brilliance that makes me sure that when you talk, it is good information and I am in good hands. You tell it to me like it is even when the things you say are not always the things that I would like to hear. You keep it REAL!!!” (Brown County client)

“Thank you, thank you, thank you! I feel like this was one of the biggest blessings that happened in my life. I put this along with my children being born healthy and when I survived that horrific shooting. I appreciate everything you have done for me. I couldn’t ask for better lawyers. I want to say thank you to everybody at your firm. I owe you more than the fee you so rightfully deserve. … You gave me back hope. Thank you, man! Out of my 36 years … I have never seen such kindness before. I don’t know what I did to deserve this; I’m very thankful nonetheless. Thank you for giving me hope again. Thank you for your generosity. There are still some really good people around.” (Federal criminal appeal client)

“There is no other attorney I’ve ever even heard of I’d rather have as chief counsel and leader of my defense/appeals than Jerome Buting. You’re the best. Period.” (Dane County client)

“Your advice and counsel were greatly appreciated. We appreciate you taking the time on your Sunday and evenings to help us. We are SO happy about the results! Thanks again.” (Waukesha County client)

“Thank you again … for everything. Five and one-half years of commitment, so many ups and downs and an outcome like that. You did a GREAT job.” (Waukesha County felony drug offense client)