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Cruz v. New York

United States Supreme Court
481 U.S. 186 (1987)


Eulogio Cruz (defendant) was indicted along with his brother Benjamin for felony murder of a gas station attendant. Benjamin confessed to the murder while he was being questioned in connection to another murder. He made a videotaped statement implicating Eulogio in the gas station attendant’s murder. Eulogio and Benjamin were tried jointly. Over Eulogio’s objections, the court allowed the prosecution to introduce the videotape into evidence. The jury was instructed that Benjamin’s confession was not to be used against Eulogio. At the end of trial, the only evidence admissible against Eulogio was the testimony of a friend of his, Norberto. Norberto testified that the day after the gas station incident, Eulogio appeared nervous and he had a bloody bandage around his arm. Norberto told the court that Eulogio confided in him and had told Norberto that he and Benjamin had gone to the gas station to rob it, that the attendant shot him, and that Benjamin then shot and killed the attendant. The jury convicted Eulogio and the court of appeals affirmed. The United States Supreme Court granted certiorari.

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