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Name: In re J. A.
Case #: B225717
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 8
Opinion Date: 08/25/2011
Summary

Where minor confessed to molest, child victim’s out-of-court statements are admissible to prove corpus delicti of crime. After admitting the child victim’s statements (under Evid. Code, §1228) to prove the corpus delicti of the offenses, the court used the minor’s confession to sustain molest allegations in a delinquency petition. The minor contended the prerequisites to admission of hearsay listed in section 1228 were not met and that absent the victim’s statements, there was insufficient evidence, other than the minor’s admissions, of corpus delicti. Corpus delicti (which is required proof that a crime has occurred) may not be shown by exclusive reliance on a defendant’s out-of-court statements. Section 1228 provides a hearsay exception in cases involving sex crimes against a minor under certain circumstances, to establish the corpus delicti of a crime. Here, the victim’s statements were admissible to prove the corpus delicti of the offenses because the minor confessed to police and there were no significant inconsistencies between the victim’s statements and the minor’s confession.