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Confronting The Reluctant Accomplice, John G. Douglass Jan 2001

Confronting The Reluctant Accomplice, John G. Douglass

Law Faculty Publications

The Supreme Court treats the Confrontation Clause as a rule of evidence that excludes unreliable hearsay. But where the hearsay declarant is an accomplice who refuses to testify at defendant's trial, the Court's approach leads prosecutors and defendants to ignore real opportunities for confrontation, while they debate the reliability of hearsay. And even where the Court's doctrine excludes hearsay, it leads prosecutors to purchase the accomplice's testimony through a process that raises equally serious questions of reliability. Thus, the Court's approach promotes neither reliability nor confrontation. This Article advocates an approach that applies the Confrontation ...