United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
763 F.2d 697 (5th Cir. 1985)
The Hogans were charged with importing marijuana and other related charges. Mark Carpenter, the pilot of the Hogans’ plane allegedly used in the import, was arrested in Mexico after landing the plane where the drug transfer was supposed to occur. While in custody, Carpenter made statements to officials that implicated both himself and the Hogans. However, at a grand jury proceeding in a related case, Carpenter claimed that he and the Hogans had no involvement in the drug importation and that his prior statements had been coerced through torture. At trial, the prosecution brought Carpenter as a witness, knowing that he would be an adverse witness and that he would testify that he and the Hogans had no involvement and that his prior confession in custody was coerced. The Hogans objected to Carpenter as a witness, but were overruled. Following Carpenter’s testimony, the prosecution called DEA and other officials to impeach Carpenter by stating that he never complained of any abuse while in custody, thus calling into question his explanation for his prior confession and implication of Hogan. The jury convicted the Hogans, and they appealed.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Clark, C.J.)
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