NACDL - Smith v. United States

Smith v. United States

Amicus curiae brief of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers supporting grant of the petition for certiorari.

Brief filed: 07/30/2010

Documents

Smith v. United States

United States Supreme Court; Case No. 10-18

Prior Decision

Decision below, 68 M.J. 445 (C.A.A.F. 2010).

Argument

There is a conflict in the federal circuits as to whether a trial court’s restriction of a defendant’s ability to cross-examine his accuser is to be reviewed de novo on appeal or for abuse of discretion; the Court of Appeals for the Armed Forces reviews a military judge's decision to admit or exclude evidence for an abuse of discretion. The Court should resolve this conflict because it implicates an issue of fundamental importance, the scope of a defendant’s constitutional right to confront his accusers.

Author(s)

Jonathan L. Marcus, Gregory M. Lipper and Jennifer Reid Whitfield, Covington & Burling, Washington, DC.