Alabama - Recording Interrogations Compendium

Information on the policy and history of recording custodial interrogations in Alabama.

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Summary

Alabama has no statute or court rule requiring recording of custodial interrogations.

Reviewing Courts

Wilson v. State, 142 So. 3d 732, 762, 763 (Ala. Crim. App. 2010): The Court of Criminal Appeals of Alabama held in 2010 that a statement made in a custodial interrogation need not be fully recorded to be admissible. The court stated that “[t]o the extent Wilson argues that the circuit court erroneously allowed the State to admit the recording of his statement because the State cannot meet its burden to establish that the statement was voluntarily given when the statement was not fully recorded, he has not met his burden to establish that plain error occurred . . . the failure to record a portion of an interview is a matter to be considered as affecting the weight to be accorded the statement rather than its admissibility.”

Centobie v. State, 861 So. 2d 1111, 1120 (Ala. Crim. App. 2001): A statement which was partially electronically recorded by law enforcement agents, because a tape was originally inserted in the recorder in the wrong direction, was nevertheless admissible.

Smith v. State, 756 So.2d 892, 931 (Ala. Crim. App. 1997): A partially recorded statement made in a custodial interrogation was admissible although the recording was missing a portion of the interrogation in which the officer testified he advised the suspect of his Miranda rights.

Miscellaneous

Departments we have identified that presently record:

Baldwin CS Mobile Prichard
Daphne Mobile CS  

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