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United States v. Truman

688 F.3d 129 (2012)

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United States v. Truman

United States Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit

688 F.3d 129 (2012)

Facts

A fire burned down a building that was partially owned by Jeffrey Truman Sr. (Truman Sr.) (defendant). Truman Sr.’s son, Jeffery Truman Jr. (Truman Jr.), confessed that he had burned the building at his father’s direction. Subsequently, Truman Sr. was charged with arson. Truman Sr. was tried in state court, and Truman Jr. testified against his father. Specifically, Truman Jr. testified under oath that his father had asked him to start the fire. Truman Jr.’s testimony was subject to cross-examination. After the state-court proceeding was dismissed, Truman Sr. was tried in federal court. At the federal-court proceeding, the government (plaintiff) called Truman Jr. as a witness. But Truman Jr. refused to answer questions about his previous state-court testimony. The government sought to introduce Truman Jr.’s previous state-court testimony into evidence. The district court admitted the testimony into evidence. Later, the jury convicted Truman Sr. Following the verdict, Truman Sr. filed a motion for a new trial. The district court granted the motion, finding that it had erroneously admitted Truman Jr.’s previous state-court testimony into evidence. The government appealed.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Lohier, J.)

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