In addition to maintaining this blog on its website, ETKS has long-maintained a separate blog entitled “New York Criminal Defense,” accessible at http://newyorkcriminaldefense.blogspot.com/.
By William T. Easton As criminal defense attorneys, we are inclined to think of venue as something we want to change. Thus, we occasionally make a motion for a change of venue based on prejudicial pre-trial publicity. To preserve our client’s right to due process, we want to get out of Dodge– preferably as far away as possible–to avoid the pervasive publicity generally concentrated in the locale where the crime occurred. As a result,...read more
NACDL press release: FBI Testimony on Microscopic Hair Analysis Contained Errors in at least 90% of Cases in Ongoing Review
(Washington, DC – April 20, 2015) The United States Department of Justice (DOJ), the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), the Innocence Project and the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) reported today that the FBI has concluded that the examiners’ testimony in at least 90 percent of trial transcripts the Bureau analyzed as part of its Microscopic Hair Comparison Analysis Review contained erroneous statements. Twenty-six of twenty-eight FBI agent/analysts provided either testimony with erroneous...read more
by James Eckert, Monroe County Assistant Public Defender The Court of Appeals, Fahey, J. writing for the court, held: “as a matter of state evidentiary law, that evidence of a defendant’s selective silence generally may not be used by the People as part of their case-in-chief, either to allow the jury to infer the defendant’s admission of guilt or to impeach the credibility of the defendant’s version of events when the defendant has not testified.” (People v...read more
Evidence as to what was said by an interrogating police officer during the interrogation, including testimony that officer told the suspect/defendant that he thought he was lying in denying committing the crime is arguably admissible as it tended to explain to the jury the circumstances of the alleged statements, thereby countering a claim that the statement was not voluntarily obtained (People v Walden, 148 AD2d 971 [4th Dept 1989]). However, in People v Pabon...read more
In 1993, Hector Rivas was convicted of the 1987 murder of his former girlfriend. The prosecution defeated Mr.Rivas’s alibi by relying on the testimony of the medical examiner which placed the time of death as occuring on the day prior to that for which Mr. Rivas had an alibi. What was noteworthy about this testimony was that for the six years prior to trial the medical examiner had placed the time of death on...read more