State v. Salas-Juarez

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Appellate Procedure
  • Date Filed: 07-02-2014
  • Case #: A149978
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: Ortega, P.J. for the Court; Haselton, C.J.; & Sercombe, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

If a defendant fails to preserve error in trial, the Court may exercise its discretion whether to consider an error raised on appeal to be a plain error sua sponte.

During an altercation outside a bar, Defendant stabbed a man who was part of a group yelling racist slurs. The man who he stabbed died several hours later. Defendant appealed his convictions for murder and attempted murder, arguing the trial court erred by not excluding the testimony of the lead detective. Specifically, Defendant argued that despite not objecting at trial, his pretrial motions preserved error, and alternatively that the trial court’s failure to strike testimony was a plain error which the Court should recognize sua sponte. Additionally, Defendant assigned error to the trial court’s disallowance of a treatise to impeach the detective, and to the trial court’s failure to correct the prosecutor’s misstatement of law. The Court held that Defendant failed to preserve error regarding the detective’s testimony and exclusion of the treatise. A defendant must offer proof as to the validity of a treatise if it is to be used to impeach. Furthermore, the trial court’s failure to strike the detective’s testimony was not plain error, nor was the prosecution’s misstatement of law. Affirmed.

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