Evidence-Wellborn SU2006 Outline

Holding the evidence should have been admitted to

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Unformatted text preview: sue, in the same trailer park, and involved the same victim and her nine year old girl friend, who was also a witness in the instance case. Summitt offerred the testimony to show that the young victim had had prior independent knowledge of similar acts which constituted the basis for the present charge. District court denied Summitt's offer on the ground that the "rape victim shield law" barred the admission of such evidence. Summitt appeals. Issue: Did the trial judge err in excluding testimony centered about a prior similar experience of the victim? Holding: The evidence should have been admitted to show that the young victim had prior independent knowledge of similar acts which constituted the basis for the present charge. o Defendant's constitutional right to confrontation was violated by trial court. o "However, in the exercise of its sound discretion, the trial court should be mindful of the important policy considerations underlying the rape-shield statute and should limit the admission of evidence of specific instances of the complainant's sexual conduct to the extent that it is possible without unduly infringing upon the D's constitutional right to confrontation." Notes: Rape shield has to do with consent. Common law could bring in lots of evidence of rape victim without any requirement...
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This note was uploaded on 08/28/2008 for the course N 483 taught by Professor Wellborn during the Summer '08 term at University of Texas at Austin.

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