Amicus Briefs Filed in 2005

The Amicus Curiae Committee’s mission is to provide amicus assistance on the federal and state level in those cases that present issues of importance to criminal defendants, criminal defense lawyers, and/or the criminal justice system as a whole. Membership in NACDL is not a prerequisite either for amicus assistance from the Committee, or for authorship of an NACDL amicus brief.


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Davis v. Washington

Amicus curiae brief of the NACDL, the Washington Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, and the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia.

Argument: Alleged victim's “excited” statements to a 911 operator naming her assailant constituted "testimonial" statements subject to the Confrontation Clause restrictions enunciated in Crawford v. Washington,541 U.S. 36 (2004); amici urge the Court to adopt a “bright line” rule requiring confrontation at trial for all accusatory statements made to 911 operators, who act as agents of the police when interviewing callers. See also Hammon v. Indiana, No. 05-5705 (“excited utterance” to responding officer).

Hammon v. Indiana

Amicus curiae brief of the NACDL and the Public Defender Service for the District of Columbia.

Argument: Alleged domestic disturbance victim’s oral accusation made to an investigating officer at the scene of an alleged crime was a testimonial statement within the meaning of Crawford v. Washington,541 U.S. 36 (2004) where accuser did not testify at trial and was not subject to cross-examination; amici urge the Court to adopt a “bright line” rule that “testimonial” statements made to police and government agents require confrontation at trial. See also Davis v. Washington, No. 05-5224 (statements made during 911 call erroneously admitted at trial under “excited utterance” hearsay exception).