Document Type

Article

Publication Date

2003

Abstract

On June 9, by granting certiorari in Crawford v. Washington, 02-9410, the Supreme Court signaled its intention to enter once again into the realm of the Confrontation Clause, in which it has found itself deeply perplexed. This time there was a difference, however, because the grant indicated that the Court might be willing to rethink its jurisprudence in this area. Crawford, like Lee v. Illinois, 476 U.S. 530 (1986), and Lilly v. Virginia, 527 U.S. 116 (1999), presents a classic case of what might be called station-house testimony. Michael Crawford was accused of stabbing another man. His wife, Sylvia, was present at the scene, and later that evening made a recorded statement to the police, in the station-house. In context, the statement was damaging to Michael's contention of self-defense. Sylvia was unavailable to testify at trial.' Accordingly, the prosecution offered the station-house statement. It was admitted over Michael's objection that it violated his right "to be confronted with the witnesses against him.". Michael was convicted, and eventually the Washington Supreme Court upheld the conviction. It deemed Sylvia's statement to be sufficiently reliable to withstand scrutiny under Ohio v. Roberts, 448 U.S. 56 (1980), because it "interlocked" to a significant degree with a station-house statement made by Michael himself.


Share

COinS