The Champion

May 2010 , Page 26 

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Virtual Testimony and Its Impact on the Confrontation Clause

By James W. Kraus

 

The Modern Courtroom

Rapid advances in technology have brought extraordinary change to the world and the way people view it. In this brave new world of flat screens, high definition, streaming video, and Internet connections, audio/video technology has been taken from the status of “the next best thing to being there” to something that is increasingly preferable to being there. In most respects, this trend is positive, and has improved the way people live and enjoy their lives. For the criminal trial practitioner, however, it is increasingly important that this march toward the future not impinge on the basic constitutional rights of criminal defendants or compromise the ability to defend.

Technology continues to affect the practice of law. It has brought instant communication, electronic discovery, and streamlined research. The judiciary, particularly the federal bench, has embraced these new developments with a somewhat surprising level of enthusiasm. Among the signs of this progress

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