State v. AbrigoAnnotate this Case
The Supreme Court vacated Defendant's conviction, holding that litigants may not utilize another hearsay exception as an alternative to bypass the restrictions contained in the public records hearsay exception.
While an exception to the evidentiary rule against hearsay typically allows public records to be admitted into evidence to prove the truth of their contents, the rule contains exclusions that ensure that law enforcement officers testify in person when the contents of their police reports are admitted as evidence in a trial. Another hearsay exception permits previously recorded recollections of a witness to be read into evidence when the witness is unable to sufficiently recall the subject matter of the statements to testify accurately at trial. Defendant was convicted on the sole basis of a police report authored by a law enforcement officer who testified at trial that he could no longer remember the material facts underlying Defendant's arrest. The Supreme Court vacated Defendant's conviction, holding that records excluded by the public records exception cannot be read into evidence based on an alternative evidentiary ground.