State v. Starr

Summarized by:

  • Court: Oregon Court of Appeals
  • Area(s) of Law: Evidence
  • Date Filed: 02-11-2015
  • Case #: A152960
  • Judge(s)/Court Below: DeVore, P.J. for the Court; Ortega, J.; & Garrett, J.
  • Full Text Opinion

Admissible hearsay statements do not violate the state constitution’s Confrontation Clause if the declarant is available and the statements have adequate indicia of reliability.

Defendant appeals his judgment of conviction. Defendant, while intoxicated, allegedly assaulted his wife and threatened a group of bystanders. The state charged him with first-degree assault, menacing, unlawful use of a weapon, and fourth-degree assault constituting domestic violence. At trial, the judge allowed admission of the girlfriend’s 911 call and her statements to responding police officers as evidence. Defendant objected, arguing that admission of the statements violated his constitutional right to confront the witness who was unavailable at trial. The trial court overruled and defendant was convicted. Defendant appealed and the Court affirmed, holding that the prosecution made sufficient effort to find the victim and that she was “unavailable.” It also held that harmless testimonial statements do not violate the Confrontation Clause. Affirmed.

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