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United States v. Boyce

United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit
742 F.3d 792 (2014)


After serving time for five felonies, Darnell Boyce (defendant) was arrested and convicted of unlawful use of a weapon (UUW) and jailed again. The government (plaintiff) sent him a form letter stating that his civil rights had been restored when he finished serving his UUW sentence. The mother of four of Boyce’s children, Sarah Portis, called 911 and said Boyce had just hit her and had a gun. Portis repeatedly confirmed seeing a gun and said she had just run upstairs to her neighbor’s apartment. Boyce returned while the police were there, and he ran. An officer gave chase, saw Boyce toss a gun into a yard, and soon caught him. Police retrieved the gun, found bullets in Boyce’s pocket, and charged Boyce with violating the federal felon-in-possession law. The police officers testified at trial, but Portis did not. Instead, the judge admitted a recording of Portis’s 911 call under the present-sense-impression and excited-utterance exceptions to the hearsay rule. Boyce was convicted and appealed, arguing that Portis’s statements were hearsay and that his civil rights had been restored.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Williams, J.)

Concurrence (Posner, J.)

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