Sunday, January 15, 2006

A Crawford v. Washington Decision Out Of The Appellate Division Second Dept.

In People v Cioffi, 2005 NY Slip Op 10145 the defendant was charged with nine (9)counts of Falsifying Business Records and one (1) count of Conspiracy in a stolen car parts case (probably a chop shop.) The court let in the FIFTEEN (15) plea allocutions of defendant's alleged co-conspirators(assumably all of them named the defendant as an accomplice).
There was no objection from defense counsel. Nevertheless the Second Dept. took up the issue in the interest of justice. The court held that the plea allocutions were testimonial in nature, and that since there was no opportunity to cross-examine the co-defendants who gave these allocutions, the court held that it was reversable error not preclude their admission.

A word to the wise, preserve the error. Crawford is not going to be a new decision forever.

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