Prior Bad Acts

April 7, 2015 1:10 pm – 1:40 pm

While you cannot offer a defendant’s prior bad acts as propensity evidence, these acts may be offered for alternative reasons. For instance, prior bad acts can help jurors understand the nature of the relationship in a domestic violence case. Similarly, prior incidents of sexual assault may show a common course of conduct to persuade a jury that the defendant committed the charged sexual assault. During this 30 minute webinar, Carrie Newton from MDAA’s Family Violence and Sexual Assault Unit will provide an overview of prior bad acts and review the permissible uses of prior bad acts discussed in Commonwealth v. Helfant, 398 Mass. 214 (1986). She will then examine how these acts can be used for discreet, but important, purposes in domestic violence and sexual assault prosecutions.

To Register for this Upcoming Webinar: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/462073425364369665

 

Dangerousness Hearings in Domestic Violence Cases

April 28, 2015 1:10 pm – 1:40 pm

The dangerousness statute, G.L. c. 276, § 58A, is a powerful arraignment tool for domestic violence prosecutors because it can be used to detain a defendant even if a cash bail is not appropriate. During this thirty-minute webinar, Carrie Newton from MDAA’s Family Violence and Sexual Assault Unit will consider when to file for a dangerousness hearing, what evidence and arguments can be used at the hearing, and review the 2014 changes to the law.

To Register for this Upcoming Webinar: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/2522567011909557249

 

Recanting Witnesses

May 12, 2015 1:10 pm – 1:40 pm

By the time a domestic violence case reaches trial, many victims will no longer testify to the facts provided in their initial report. Proving a case with a recanting victim is possible, but whether or not to proceed with a reluctant victim is a determination that should be made carefully and on a case-specific basis. In this thirty-minute webinar, Carrie Newton from MDAA’s Family Violence and Sexual Assault Unit will discuss whether to call a reluctant victim as a witness and offer possible strategies for the direct examination of such witness at trial. She will also consider motions in limine that may be filed to help the jury understand a victim’s recantation and motions that can help the Commonwealth prove the case substantively.

To Register for this Upcoming Webinar: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8352764801587061761