In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the Assistance of Counsel for his defense.


“The primary object of the [Confrontation Clause is] to prevent depositions of ex parte affidavits . . . being used against the prisoner in lieu of a personal examination and cross-examination of the witness in which the accused has an opportunity not only of testing the recollection and sifting the conscience of the witness, but of compelling him to stand face to face with the jury in order that they may look at him, and judge by his demeanor upon the stand and the manner in which he gives his testimony whether he is worthy of belief.”221 The right of confrontation is “[o]ne of the fundamental guarantees of life and liberty . . . long deemed so essential for the due protection of life and liberty that it is guarded against legislative and judicial action by provisions in the Constitution of the United States and in the constitutions of most if not of all the States composing the Union.”222 Before 1965, when the Court held the right to be protected against state abridgment,223 it had little need to clarify the relationship between the right of confrontation and the hearsay rule,224 because it could control the admission of hearsay through exercise of its supervisory powers over the inferior federal courts.225

On the basis of the Confrontation Clause, the Court had concluded that evidence given at a preliminary hearing could not be used at the trial if the absence of the witness was attributable to the negligence of the prosecution,226 but that if a witness’ absence had been procured by the defendant, testimony given at a previous trial on a different indictment could be used at the subsequent trial.227 The Court had also recognized the admissibility of dying declarations228 and of testimony given at a former trial by a witness since deceased.229 The prosecution was not permitted to use a judgment of conviction against other defendants on charges of theft in order to prove that the property found in the possession of the defendant now on trial was stolen.230 A prosecutor, however, may comment on a defendant’s presence at trial, and call attention to the defendant’s opportunity to tailor his or her testimony to comport with that of previous witnesses.231

For years the Court has struggled with the relationship between hearsay rules and the Confrontation Clause. In a series of decisions beginning in 1965, the Court seemed to equate the Confrontation Clause with the hearsay rule, positing that a major purpose of the clause was “to give the defendant charged with crime an opportunity to cross-examine the witnesses against him,” unless one of the hearsay exceptions applies.232 Thus, in Pointer v. Texas,233 the complaining witness had testified at a preliminary hearing at which he was not cross-examined and the defendant was not represented by counsel, and by the time of trial, the witness had moved to another state and the prosecutor made no effort to obtain his return. Offering the preliminary hearing testimony violated the defendant’s right of confrontation. In Douglas v. Alabama,234 the prosecution called as a witness the defendant’s alleged accomplice, and when the accomplice refused to testify, pleading his privilege against self-incrimination, the prosecutor read to him to “refresh” his memory a confession in which he implicated the defendant. Because the defendant could not cross-examine the accomplice with regard to the truth of the confession, the Court held that the Confrontation Clause had been violated. In Bruton v. United States,235 the use at a joint trial of a confession made by one of the defendants was held to violate the confrontation rights of the other defendant who was implicated by it because he could not cross-examine the codefendant.236 The Court continues to view as “presumptively unreliable accomplices’ confessions that incriminate defendants.”237

Then, in 1970, the Court refused to equate the Confrontation Clause with hearsay rules. “While . . . hearsay rules and the Confrontation Clause are generally designed to protect similar values, it is quite a different thing to suggest that the overlap is complete and that the Confrontation Clause is nothing more or less than a codification of the rules of hearsay and their exceptions as they existed historically at common law. Our decisions have never established such a congruence; indeed, we have more than once found a violation of confrontation values even though the statements in issue were admitted under an arguably recognized hearsay exception. The converse is equally true: merely because evidence is admitted in violation of a long-established hearsay rule does not lead to the automatic conclusion that confrontation rights have been denied.”238 In holding admissible a statement made to police during custodial interrogation, the Court explained that “[T]he Confrontation Clause does not require excluding from evidence the prior statements of a witness who concedes making the statements, and who may be asked to defend or otherwise explain the inconsistency between his prior and his present version of the events in question, thus opening himself to full cross-examination at trial as to both stories.”239

The Court favored a hearsay exception over a cross-examination requirement in Dutton v. Evans,240 upholding the use as substantive evidence at trial of a statement made by a witness whom the prosecution could have produced but did not.241 Presentation of a statement by a witness who is under oath, in the presence of the jury, and subject to cross-examination by the defendant is only one way of complying with the Confrontation Clause, four Justices concluded. Thus, at least in the absence of prosecutorial misconduct or negligence and where the evidence is not “crucial” or “devastating,” these Justices found that the Confrontation Clause could be satisfied if “the trier of fact [has] a satisfactory basis for evaluating the truth of the [hearsay] statement.” The reliability of a statement was to be ascertained in each case by an inquiry into the likelihood that cross-examination of the declarant at trial could successfully call into question the declaration’s apparent meaning or the declarant’s sincerity, perception, or memory.242

In Ohio v. Roberts,243 a Court majority adopted a reliability test for satisfying the confrontation requirement through use of a statement by an unavailable witness.244 Over the course of 24 years, Roberts was applied, narrowed,245 and finally overruled in Crawford v. Washington.246 The Court in Crawford rejected reliance on “particularized guarantees of trustworthiness” as inconsistent with the requirements of the Confrontation Clause. The Clause “commands, not that evidence be reliable, but that reliability be assessed in a particular manner: by testing in the crucible of cross-examination.”247 Reliability is an “amorphous” concept that is “manipulable,” and the Roberts test had been applied “to admit core testimonial statements that the Confrontation Clause plainly meant to exclude.”248 “Where testimonial statements are at issue, the only indicium of reliability sufficient to satisfy constitutional demands is the one the Constitution actually prescribes: confrontation.”249

Crawford represented a decisive turning point by clearly stating the basic principles to be used in Confrontation Clause analysis. “Testimonial evidence” may be admitted against a criminal defendant only if the declarant is available for cross-examination at trial, or, if the declarant is unavailable (and the government has made reasonable efforts to procure his presence), the defendant has had a prior opportunity to cross-examine as to the content of the statement.250 What statements are “testimonial”? In Crawford, the Court wrote: “Various formulations of this core class of testimonial statements exist: ex parte in-court testimony or its functional equivalent—that is, material such as affidavits, custodial examinations, prior testimony that the defendant was unable to cross-examine, or similar pretrial statements that declarants would reasonably expect to be used prosecutorially; extrajudicial statements . . . contained in formalized testimonial material, such as affidavits, depositions, prior testimony, or confessions; statements that were made under circumstances which would lead an objective witness reasonably to believe that the statement would be available for use at a later trial.”251 The Court added that it would “leave for another day any effort to spell out a comprehensive definition of ‘testimonial,’” but, “[w]hatever else the term covers, it applies at a minimum to prior testimony at a preliminary hearing, before a grand jury, or at a former trial; and to police interrogations.”252

The Court subsequently concluded that “little more than the application of our holding in Crawford v. Washington” was needed to find that “affidavits reporting the results of forensic analysis which showed that material seized by the police and connected to the defendant was cocaine” were subject to the right of confrontation. The Court found that the analysts were required to testify in person even though state law declared their affidavits “prima facie evidence of the composition, quality, and the net weight of the narcotic . . . analyzed.”253 Further, where such testimony is required, the prosecution may not use a “surrogate” witness who, although familiar with the mechanics of forensic testing, had not signed the certification or personally performed or observed the performance of the test. Such a surrogate could not speak to concerns about the integrity of testing procedures or to questions about the performance of the certifying analyst.254 A year after this apparently straightforward holding in Bullcoming v. New Mexico, however, the Court’s guidance on trial consideration of forensic reports was clouded by Williams v. Illinois.255 In Williams, an expert witness (not a surrogate witness from the testing lab) testified that a DNA profile she had prepared from the defendant’s blood matched a DNA profile reported by an outside lab from a swab of a rape victim. A four-Justice plurality held that the expert incorporated the lab’s report in her testimony in a way not intended to prove that the outside lab had in fact tested a swab from a particular rape victim and come up with the defendant’s DNA profile, but rather in a way solely intended to establish a basis for the expert’s opinion that two DNA profiles matched. Four dissenters vigorously asserted the contrary, finding that the outside lab’s report served the purpose of incriminating the defendant directly because it identified the rape victim as the source of the material the lab profiled. The expert’s testimony effectively was used to connect the defendant with a named individual and not just his DNA profile with a DNA sample obtained from some unnamed source. Accordingly, the dissent asserted the Confrontation Clause required that the defendant have an opportunity to examine the lab technicians responsible for the report. The ninth Justice in the case, Justice Thomas, agreed the report was directly incriminating because the expert expressly used it to link her profile of the defendant’s DNA to the rape victim. Nevertheless, Justice Thomas concurred in judgment of the plurality, reprising his opinion stated in earlier cases256 that the Confrontation Clause covers only formalized statements of a solemnity that the uncertified lab report in this case lacked.

Generally, the only exceptions to the right of confrontation that the Court has acknowledged are the two that existed under common law at the time of the founding: “declarations made by a speaker who was both on the brink of death and aware that he was dying,” and “statements of a witness who was ‘detained’ or ‘kept away’ by the ‘means or procurement’ of the defendant.”257 The second of these exceptions applies “only when the defendant engaged in conduct designed to prevent the witness from testifying.”258 Thus, in a trial for murder, the question arose whether statements made by the victim to a police officer three weeks before she was murdered, that the defendant had threatened her, could be admitted. The state court had admitted them on the basis that the defendant’s having murdered the victim had made the victim unavailable to testify, but the Supreme Court reversed, holding that, unless the testimony had been confronted or fell within the dying declaration exception, it could not be admitted “on the basis of a prior judicial assessment that the defendant is guilty as charged,” for to admit it on that basis it would “not sit well with the right to trial by jury.”259

In Davis v. Washington,260 the Court began to explore the parameters of Crawford by considering when a police interrogation is “testimonial” for purposes of the Confrontation Clause. Davis involved a 911 call in which a woman described being assaulted by a former boyfriend. A tape of that call was admitted as evidence of a felony violation of a domestic no-contact order, despite the fact that the woman in question did not testify. Although again declining to establish all the parameters of when a response to police interrogation is testimonial, the Court held that statements to the police are nontestimonial when made under circumstances that “objectively indicat[e] that the primary purpose of the interrogation is to enable police assistance to meet an ongoing emergency.”261 Statements made after such an emergency has ended, however, would be treated as testimonial and could not be introduced into evidence.262

In Michigan v. Bryant,263 however, the Court appeared to extend the scope and basis of the “ongoing emergency” exception. In Bryant, a man dying from a gun shot wound was found by police lying on the ground next to his car in a gas station parking lot, several blocks away from where he had been shot. In response to questions from several police officers, the victim identified the defendant as his assailant, and his response was later used in the defendant’s trial despite the victim’s unavailability to testify. In determining whether such statements were related to an ongoing emergency (and thus were non-testimonial), the majority noted that an objective analysis of this question was “highly context-dependent”,264 and depended on the nature of the crime, the weapon utilized, the medical condition of the victim, and the formality of the setting. Further, in determining the testimonial nature of such information, the Court considered not just the intent of the declarant, but also the intentions of the police coming upon the crime scene who, ignorant of preceding events, began seeking information to decide whether there was a continuing danger to the victim or the public.265 Considering that there are other potential exceptions to the Confrontation Clause where the “primary purpose” for creation of evidence is not related to gathering evidence for trial,266 the breadth of this opinion may signal a retreat from the limits of Crawford.

The Court continued its shift away from a broader reading of Crawford in Ohio v. Clark,267 a case that held that the Confrontation Clause did not bar the introduction of statements that a child made to his preschool teacher regarding abuse committed by the defendant.268 To reach its holding, the Court, relying on a multi-factor approach to the primary purpose test similar to Bryant, noted that the statements in question (1) occurred in the context of an ongoing emergency involving suspected child abuse; (2) were made by a very young child, who did not intend his statements to be a substitute for trial testimony; (3) historically were admissible at common law; and (4) were not made to law enforcement officers.269 In so holding, the Court appeared to lessen the importance of the primary purpose test, concluding that the primary purpose test is a “necessary, but not always sufficient, condition” for the exclusion of out-of-court statements under the Sixth Amendment, as evidence that satisfies the primary purpose test may still be presented at trial if the evidence would have been admissible at the time of the founding.270

In two pre-Crawford cases, the Court took contrasting approaches to the Confrontation Clause regarding state efforts to protect a child from psychological trauma while testifying. In Coy v. Iowa,271 the Court held that the right of confrontation is violated by a procedure, authorized by statute, placing a one-way screen between complaining child witnesses and the defendant, thereby sparing the witnesses from viewing the defendant. This conclusion was reached even though the witnesses could be viewed by the defendant’s counsel and by the judge and jury, even though the right of cross-examination was in no way limited, and even though the state asserted a strong interest in protecting child sex-abuse victims from further trauma.272 The Court’s opinion by Justice Scalia declared that a defendant’s right during his trial to face-to-face confrontation with his accusers derives from “the irreducible literal meaning of the clause,” and traces “to the beginnings of Western legal culture.”273 Squarely rejecting the Wigmore view “that the only essential interest preserved by the right was cross-examination,”274 the Court emphasized the importance of face-to-face confrontation in eliciting truthful testimony.

Coy’s interpretation of the Confrontation Clause, though not its result, was rejected in Maryland v. Craig.275 In Craig, the Court upheld Maryland’s use of one-way, closed circuit television to protect a child witness in a sex crime from viewing the defendant. As in Coy, procedural protections other than confrontation were afforded: the child witness must testify under oath, is subject to cross examination, and is viewed by the judge, jury, and defendant. The critical factual difference between the two cases was that Maryland required a case-specific finding that the child witness would be traumatized by presence of the defendant, while the Iowa procedures struck down in Coy rested on a statutory presumption of trauma. But the difference in approach is explained by the fact that Justice O’Connor’s views, expressed in a concurring opinion in Coy, became the opinion of the Court in Craig.276 Beginning with the proposition that the Confrontation Clause does not, as evidenced by hearsay exceptions, grant an absolute right to face-to-face confrontation, the Court in Craig described the clause as “reflect[ing] a preference for face-to-face confrontation.”277 This preference can be overcome “only where denial of such confrontation is necessary to further an important public policy and only where the reliability of the testimony is otherwise assured.”278 Relying on the traditional and “transcendent” state interest in protecting the welfare of children, on the significant number of state laws designed to protect child witnesses, and on “the growing body of academic literature documenting the psychological trauma suffered by child abuse victims,”279 the Court found a state interest sufficiently important to outweigh a defendant’s right to face-to-face confrontation. Reliability of the testimony was assured by the “rigorous adversarial testing [that] preserves the essence of effective confrontation.”280 All of this, of course, would have led to a different result in Coy as well, but Coy was distinguished with the caveat that “[t]he requisite finding of necessity must of course be a case-specific one”; Maryland’s required finding that a child witness would suffer “serious emotional distress” if not protected was clearly adequate for this purpose.281

In another case involving child sex crime victims, the Court held that there is no right of face-to-face confrontation at an in-chambers hearing to determine the competency of a child victim to testify, because the defendant’s attorney participated in the hearing, and because the procedures allowed “full and effective” opportunity to cross-examine the witness at trial and request reconsideration of the competency ruling.282 And there is no absolute right to confront witnesses with relevant evidence impeaching those witnesses; failure to comply with a rape shield law’s notice requirement can validly preclude introduction of evidence relating to a witness’s prior sexual history.283

221 Mattox v. United States, 156 U.S. 237, 242–43 (1895).

222 Kirby v. United States, 174 U.S. 47, 55, 56 (1899). Cf. Pointer v. Texas, 380 U.S. 400, 404–05 (1965). The right may be waived but it must be a knowing, intelligent waiver uncoerced from defendant. Brookhart v. Janis, 384 U.S. 1 (1966).

223 Pointer v. Texas, 380 U.S. 400 (1965) (overruling West v. Louisiana, 194 U.S. 258 (1904)); see also Stein v. New York, 346 U.S. 156, 195–96 (1953).

224 Hearsay is the prior out-of-court statements of a person, offered affirmatively for the truth of the matters asserted, presented at trial either orally by another person or in writing. Hickory v. United States, 151 U.S. 303, 309 (1894); Southern Ry. v. Gray, 241 U.S. 333, 337 (1916); Bridges v. Wixon, 326 U.S. 135 (1945).

225 Thus, although it had concluded that the co-conspirator exception to the hearsay rule was consistent with the Confrontation Clause, Delaney v. United States, 263 U.S. 586, 590 (1924), the Court’s formulation of the exception and its limitations was pursuant to its supervisory powers. Lutwak v. United States, 344 U.S. 604 (1953); Krulewitch v. United States, 336 U.S. 440 (1949).

226 Motes v. United States, 178 U.S. 458 (1900).

227 Reynolds v. United States, 98 U.S. (8 Otto) 145 (1879).

228 Kirby v. United States, 174 U.S. 47, 61 (1899); Robertson v. Baldwin, 165 U.S. 275, 282 (1897).

229 Mattox v. United States, 156 U.S. 237, 240 (1895).

230 Kirby v. United States, 174 U.S. 47 (1899), and Dowdell v. United States, 221 U.S. 325 (1911), recognized the inapplicability of the clause to the admission of documentary evidence to establish collateral facts, admissible under the common law, to permit certification as an additional record to the appellate court of the events of the trial.

231 Portuondo v. Agard, 529 U.S. 61 (2000).

232 Pointer v. Texas, 380 U.S. 400, 406–07 (1965); Douglas v. Alabama, 380 U.S. 415, 418 (1965). “The right to confrontation is basically a trial right. It includes both the opportunity to cross-examine and the occasion for the jury to weigh the demeanor of the witness.” Barber v. Page, 390 U.S. 719, 725 (1968). Unjustified limitation of the defendant’s right to cross-examine witnesses presented against him at trial may constitute a confrontation clause violation, Smith v. Illinois, 390 U.S. 129 (1968), or a denial of due process, Alford v. United States, 282 U.S. 687 (1931); and In re Oliver, 333 U.S. 257 (1948).

233 380 U.S. 400 (1965). Justices Harlan and Stewart concurred on due process grounds, rejecting the “incorporation” holding. Id. at 408, 409. See also Barber v. Page, 390 U.S. 719 (1968), in which the Court refused to permit the state to use the preliminary hearing testimony of a witness in a federal prison in another state at the time of trial. The Court acknowledged the hearsay exception permitting the use of such evidence when a witness was unavailable but refused to find him “unavailable” when the state had made no effort to procure him; and Mancusi v. Stubbs, 408 U.S. 204 (1972), in which the Court permitted the state to assume the unavailability of a witness then living in Sweden, and to use the transcript of the witness’ testimony at a former trial.

234 380 U.S. 415 (1965). See also Smith v. Illinois, 390 U.S. 129 (1968) (Confrontation Clause was violated by allowing an informer as to identify himself by alias and to conceal his true name and address because the defense could not effectively cross-examine); Davis v. Alaska, 415 U.S. 308 (1974) (state law prohibiting disclosure of the identity of juvenile offenders could not be applied to preclude cross-examination of a witness about his juvenile record when the object was to allege possible bias on the part of the witness). Cf. Chambers v. Mississippi, 410 U.S. 284 (1973); United States v. Nobles, 422 U.S. 233, 240–41 (1975).

235 391 U.S. 123 (1968). The Court in this case equated confrontation with the hearsay rule, first emphasizing “that the hearsay statement inculpating petitioner was clearly inadmissible against him under traditional rules of evidence”, id. at 128 n.3, and then observing that “[t]he reason for excluding this evidence as an evidentiary matter also requires its exclusion as a constitutional matter.” Id. at 136 n.12 (emphasis by Court). Bruton was applied retroactively in a state case in Roberts v. Russell, 392 U.S. 293 (1968). Where, however, the codefendant takes the stand in his own defense, denies making the alleged out-of-court statement implicating defendant, and proceeds to testify favorably to the defendant concerning the underlying facts, the defendant has not been denied his right of confrontation under Bruton. Nelson v. O’Neil, 402 U.S. 622 (1971). In two cases, violations of the rule in Bruton have been held to be “harmless error” in the light of the overwhelming amount of legally admitted evidence supporting conviction. Harrington v. California, 395 U.S. 250 (1969); Schneble v. Florida, 405 U.S. 427 (1972). Bruton was held inapplicable, however, when the nontestifying codefendant’s confession was redacted to omit any reference to the defendant, and was circumstantially incriminating only as the result of other evidence properly introduced. Richardson v. Marsh, 481 U.S. 200 (1987). Bruton was held applicable, however, where a blank space or the word “deleted” is substituted for the defendant’s name in a co-defendant’s confession, making such confession incriminating of the defendant on its face. Gray v. Maryland, 523 U.S. 185 (1998).

236 In Parker v. Randolph, 442 U.S. 62 (1979), the Court was evenly divided on the question whether interlocking confessions may be admitted without violating the clause. Four Justices held that admission of such confessions is proper, even though neither defendant testifies, if the judge gives the jury a limiting instruction. Four Justices held that a harmless error analysis should be applied, although they then divided over its meaning in this case. The former approach was rejected in favor of the latter in Cruz v. New York, 481 U.S. 186 (1987). The appropriate focus is on reliability, the Court indicated, and “the defendant’s confession may be considered at trial in assessing whether his codefendant’s statements are supported by sufficient ‘indicia of reliability’ to be directly admissible against him (assuming the ‘unavailability’ of the codefendant) despite the lack of opportunity for cross-examination.” 481 U.S. at 193–94.

237 Lee v. Illinois, 476 U.S. 530, 541 (1986); Lilly v. Virginia, 527 U.S. 116, 132 (1999).

238 California v. Green, 399 U.S. 149, 155–56 (1970) (citations omitted) (holding statement admissible because the witness was present at trial and could have been cross-examined then). See also Dutton v. Evans, 400 U.S. 74, 80–86 (1970) (plurality opinion by Justice Stewart). Compare id. at 94–95 (Justice Harlan concurring), with id. at 105 n.7 (Justice Marshall dissenting).

239 California v. Green, 399 U.S. at 164. Justice Brennan dissented. Id. at 189. See also Nelson v. O’Neil, 402 U.S. 622 (1971). “The Confrontation Clause includes no guarantee that every witness called by the prosecution will refrain from giving testimony that is marred by forgetfulness, confusion, or evasion. To the contrary, the Confrontation Clause is generally satisfied when the defense is given a full and fair opportunity to probe and expose these infirmities through cross-examination.” Delaware v. Fensterer, 474 U.S. 15, 21–22 (1985) (per curiam) (expert witness testified as to conclusion, but could not remember basis for conclusion). See also United States v. Owens, 484 U.S. 554 (1988) (testimony as to a previous, out-of-court identification statement is not barred by witness’ inability, due to memory loss, to explain the basis for his identification).

240 400 U.S. 74 (1970).

241 The statement was made by an alleged co-conspirator of the defendant and was admissible under the co-conspirator exception to the hearsay rule.

242 400 U.S. at 86–89. The quoted phrase is at 89, (quoting California v. Green, 399 U.S. 149, 161 (1970)). Justice Harlan concurred to carry the case, on the view that (1) the Confrontation Clause requires only that any testimony actually given at trial must be subject to cross-examination, but (2) in the absence of countervailing circumstances introduction of prior recorded testimony—“trial by affidavit”—would violate the clause. Id. at 93, 95, 97. Justices Marshall, Black, Douglas, and Brennan dissented, id. at 100, arguing for adoption of a rule that: “The incriminatory extrajudicial statement of an alleged accomplice is so inherently prejudicial that it cannot be introduced unless there is an opportunity to cross-examine the declarant, whether or not his statement falls within a genuine exception to the hearsay rule.” Id. at 110– 11. The Clause protects defendants against use of substantive evidence against them, but does not bar rebuttal of the defendant’s own testimony. Tennessee v. Street, 471 U.S. 409 (1985) (use of accomplice’s confession not to establish facts as to defendant’s participation in the crime, but instead to support officer’s rebuttal of defendant’s testimony as to circumstances of defendant’s confession; presence of officer assured right of cross-examination).

243 448 U.S. 56 (1980). The witness was absent from home and her parents testified they did not know where she was or how to get in touch with her. The state’s sole effort to locate her was to deliver a series of subpoenas to her parents’ home. Over the objection of three dissenters, the Court held this to be an adequate basis to demonstrate her unavailability. Id. at 74–77.

244 “[O]nce a witness is shown to be unavailable . . . , the Clause countenances only hearsay marked with such trustworthiness that ‘there is no material departure from the reason of the general rule.’” 448 U.S. at 65 (quoting Snyder v. Massachusetts, 291 U.S. 97, 107 (1934)). The Court indicated that reliability could be inferred without more if the evidence falls within a firmly rooted hearsay exception.

245 Applying Roberts, the Court held that the fact that defendant’s and codefendant’s confessions “interlocked” on a number of points was not a sufficient indicium of reliability, since the confessions diverged on the critical issues of the respective roles of the two defendants. Lee v. Illinois, 476 U.S. 530 (1986). Roberts was narrowed in United States v. Inadi, 475 U.S. 387 (1986), which held that the rule of “necessity” is confined to use of testimony from a prior judicial proceeding, and is inapplicable to co-conspirators’ out-of-court statements. See also White v. Illinois, 502 U.S. 346, 357 (1992) (holding admissible “evidence embraced within such firmly rooted exceptions to the hearsay rule as those for spontaneous declarations and statements made for medical treatment”); and Idaho v. Wright, 497 U.S. 805, 822–23 (1990) (insufficient evidence of trustworthiness of statements made by child sex crime victim to her pediatrician; statements were admitted under a “residual” hearsay exception rather than under a firmly rooted exception).

246 541 U.S. 36 (2004).

247 541 U.S. at 60–61.

248 541 U.S. at 63.

249 541 U.S. at 68–69.

250 541 U.S. at 54, 59.

251 541 U.S. at 51–2 (internal quotation marks and citations omitted), quoted with approval in Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts, 557 U.S. ___, No. 07–591, slip op. at 3–4 (2009).

252 541 U.S. at 68.

253 Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts, 557 U.S. ___, No. 07–591, slip op. at 23, 1, 2 (2009).

254 Bullcoming v. New Mexico, 564 U.S. ___, No. 09–10876, slip op. at 12 (2011).

255 567 U.S. ___, No. 10–8505, slip op. (2012).

256 See, e.g., Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts, 557 U.S. ___, No. 07–591, slip op. (Justice Thomas concurring).

257 Giles v. California, 128 S. Ct. 2678, 2682, 2683 (2008).

258 128 S. Ct. at 2683.

259 128 S. Ct. at 2686.

260 547 U.S. 813 (2006).

261 547 U.S. at 822.

262 547 U.S. at 828–29. Thus, where police responding to a domestic violence report interrogated a woman in the living room while her husband was being questioned in the kitchen, there was no present threat to the woman, so such information as was solicited was testimonial. Id. at 830 (facts of Hammon v. Indiana, considered together with Davis.)

263 562 U.S. ___, No. 09–150, slip op (2011). Justice Sotomayor wrote the majority opinion, joined by Chief Justice Roberts and Justices Kennedy, Breyer and Alito. Justice Thomas file an opinion concurring in judgment, while Justices Scalia and Ginsburg filed dissenting opinions. Justice Kagan did not participate in the case.

264 Slip op. at 16.

265 Slip op. at 20.

266 See slip op. at 15 n.9. The Court noted that many exceptions to hearsay rules rest on the belief that certain statements are made for a purpose other than use in a prosecution See, e.g., Fed. Rule Evid. 801(d)(2)(E) (statement by a co-conspirator during and in furtherance of the conspiracy); 803(4) (Statements for Purposes of Medical Diagnosis or Treatment); 803(6) (Records of Regularly Conducted Activity); 803(8) (Public Records and Reports); 803(9) (Records of Vital Statistics); 803(11) (Records of Religious Organizations); 803(12) (Marriage, Baptismal, and Similar Certificates); 803(13) (Family Records); and 804(b)(3) (Statement Against Interest).

267 See 576 U.S. ___, No. 13–1352, slip op. (2015).

268 Id. at 1.

269 Id. at 7–10.

270 Id. at 7.

271 487 U.S. 1012 (1988).

272 On this latter point, the Court indicated that only “individualized findings,” rather than statutory presumption, could suffice to create an exception to the rule. 487 U.S. at 1021.

273 487 U.S. at 1015, 1021.

274 487 U.S. at 1018 n.2.

275 497 U.S. 836 (1990).

276 Coy was decided by a 6–2 vote. Justice Scalia’s opinion of the Court was joined by Justices Brennan, White, Marshall, Stevens, and O’Connor; Justice O’Connor’s separate concurring opinion was joined by Justice White; Justice Blackmun’s dissenting opinion was joined by Chief Justice Rehnquist; and Justice Kennedy did not participate. In Craig, a 5–4 decision, Justice O’Connor’s opinion of the Court was joined by the two Coy dissenters and by Justices White and Kennedy. Justice Scalia’s dissent was joined by Justices Brennan, Marshall, and Stevens.

277 497 U.S. at 849 (emphasis in original).

278 497 U.S. at 850. Dissenting Justice Scalia objected that face-to-face confrontation “is not a preference ‘reflected’ by the Confrontation Clause [but rather] a constitutional right unqualifiedly guaranteed,” and that the Court “has applied ‘interest-balancing’ analysis where the text of the Constitution simply does not permit it.” Id. at 863, 870.

279 497 U.S. at 855.

280 497 U.S. at 857.

281 497 U.S. at 855.

282 Kentucky v. Stincer, 482 U.S. 730, 744 (1987).

283 Michigan v. Lucas, 500 U.S. 145 (1991).

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