Saturday, May 19, 2012
A Certain Cache: Court Of Appeals Of New York Finds Web "Cache" Evidence Insufficient To Uphold Child Pornography Convictions
A defendant is charged with two counts of promoting a sexual performance by a child and 134 counts of possessing a sexual performance by a child. Some of these charges are the result of the discovery of images of child pornography in the Web "cache" on the defendant's computer. Does the prosecution have to prove that the defendant had knowledge that when he viewed child pornography on his computer,the pornography was automatically stored in the cache to secure his conviction? According to the recent opinion of the Court of Appeals of New York in People v. Kent, 2012 WL 1580439 (N.Y. 2012), the answer is "yes."
Thursday, May 17, 2012
Last Dance With Mary Jane: Will Evidence of THC In Trayvon Martin's Blood Be Admissible In George Zimmerman Trial?
According to several sources,
The medical examiner's report showed traces of THC - the active ingredient in marijuana - in [Trayvon] Martin's blood and a positive test for cannabinoids in his urine.
Of course, this begs the question of whether George Zimmerman will be able to present this drug evidence in support of his claim of self-defense in his impending second-degree murder trial. The admissibility of this drug evidence will depend on a variety of factors, but the opinion of the Court of Appeal, Fourth District, Division 3, California, in People v. Sanchez, 2010 WL 2842158 (Cal.App. 4 Dist. 2010), supports the proposition that the judge could exclude it.
Deborah Tuerkheimer's Judging Sex & The En Banc Opinion That Reversed The Rape Shield Killing Ruling
Back in 2010, I posted an entry about the Sixth Circuit's opinion in Gagne v. Booker, 596 F.3d 335 (6th Cir. 2010), the (in)famous rape shield case in which the dissent accused the majority of "effectively abrogat[ing] every rape-shield statute in this circuit…." At the time, I thought that this statement was a bit hyperbolic but agreed with the dissenting judge that the opinion was a nasty piece of work, so I am glad to report that the Sixth Circuit overturned it in in en banc opinion issued yesterday: Gagne v. Booker. In this post, I will address the court's holding as well as a terrific forthcoming article, Judging Sex (forthcoming, Cornell Law Review), by Professor Deborah Tuerkheimer.