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United States v. McRae

United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit
593 F.2d 700 (1979)


McRae (defendant) killed his wife with his hunting rifle on a military reservation. McRae admitted to the killing but claimed that it was accidental. The United States (plaintiff) charged McRae with murder. At trial, the district court permitted introduction of photographs of the crime scene. The photographs depicted the victim in the chair in which she was killed. The victim was very bloody, and the photographs showed the hole in her head left by the bullet. The district court found that given McRae’s defense of accident, the photographs were very probative as to the establishment of the victim’s and McRae’s positioning when the gun went off. A jury convicted McRae, and he appealed, arguing that the district court abused its discretion by declining to exclude the photographs as unfairly prejudicial under Federal Rule of Evidence 403.

Rule of Law


Holding and Reasoning (Gee, J.)

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