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Evidence – Other acts

By: WISCONSIN LAW JOURNAL STAFF//October 11, 2011//

Evidence – Other acts

By: WISCONSIN LAW JOURNAL STAFF//October 11, 2011//

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Evidence
Other acts

It was error to admit evidence of unrelated hard core pornography on a defendant’s home computer, in a prosecution for distributing child pornography.

“The challenged videos include the kind of highly reprehensible and offensive content that might lead a jury to convict because it thinks that the defendant is a bad person and deserves punishment, regardless of whether the defendant committed the charged crime. Given the inflammatory nature of the evidence, the district court needed to know what was in the photographs and videos in order for it to properly exercise its discretion under Rule 403. Without looking at the videos for itself, the court could not have fully assessed the potential prejudice to Loughry and weighed it against the evidence’s probative value. See Curtin, 489 F.3d at 958 (‘One cannot evaluate in a Rule 403 context what one has not seen or read.’). We therefore hold that, in light of the evidence in this case, the district court abused its discretion under Rule 403 when it failed to review the challenged videos before they were admitted in evidence.”

Reversed and Remanded.

10-2967 U.S. v. Loughry

Appeal from the United States District Court for the Southern District of Indiana, Lawrence, J., Williams, J.

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