Editor's Note :

Editor's Note :

This week the blog will publish a multi-part online symposium on United States v. Texas, a challenge by Texas and twenty-five states to the Obama administration's deferred-action policy for immigration. Contributions to this special feature, as well as an “explainer” by this blog's Lyle Denniston, are available here.

Michigan v. Bryant

Docket No. Op. Below Argument Opinion Vote Author Term
09-150 Mich. S.Ct. Oct 5, 2010
Tr.Aud.
Feb 28, 2011 6-2 Sotomayor OT 2010

Holding: A statement given to police by a wounded crime victim identifying the person who shot him may be admitted as evidence at the trial if the victim dies before trial and thus does not appear. Because the primary purpose of the interrogation was to enable police to deal with an ongoing emergency, the statements resulting from that interrogation were not testimonial and could be admitted without violating the Confrontation Clause. (Kagan, J., recused).

Plain English Holding: A statement given to police by a wounded crime victim identifying the person who shot him is nontestimonial, and thus may be admitted as evidence at the trial without violating the Confrontation Clause even though the victim has died and thus cannot appear, because the primary purpose of the interrogation was to enable police to deal with an ongoing emergency. (Kagan, J., recused).

Judgment: Vacated and Remanded, 6-2, in an opinion by Justice Sonia Sotomayor on February 28, 2011. Justice Scalia and Justice Ginsburg each filed separate dissents. Justice Kagan did not take part in the decision.

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