From our private database of 35,400+ case briefs...
Olden v. Kentucky
United States Supreme Court
488 U.S. 227 (1988)
James Olden (defendant) and Starla Matthews met in a bar; the two eventually left the bar and had sexual intercourse. Olden claimed that the intercourse was consensual, but Matthews claimed that she had been kidnapped, raped, and forcibly sodomized. Olden was indicted for kidnapping, rape, and forcible sodomy. At Olden's trial, Olden sought to show that Matthews had a motive to lie about the incident because she was seeing Olden’s half-brother, Bill Russell, and she feared that a revelation of the incident would ruin the relationship. To prove this, Olden tried to introduce evidence that Matthews was living with Russell at the time of trial. The trial court excluded the evidence on the grounds that Matthews, a white woman, having a relationship with Russell, a black man, could unfairly prejudice Matthews in the eyes of the jury. Similarly, the trial court also sustained an objection when the defense tried to cross-examine Matthews about her living situation. The jury acquitted Olden of kidnapping and rape but convicted him of forcible sodomy. Olden appealed, asserting that the trial court's refusal to allow him to impeach Matthews's testimony by introducing evidence of her possible motive to lie violated his rights under the Confrontation Clause of the Sixth Amendment. The Kentucky Court of Appeals affirmed the conviction, and Olden petitioned the United States Supreme Court for certiorari.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Per Curiam)
Dissent (Marshall, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 616,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Berkeley, and Northwestern—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students.Unlock this case briefRead our student testimonials
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students.Learn about our approachRead more about Quimbee
Here's why 616,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 35,400 briefs, keyed to 984 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.