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Name: Jurcoane v. Superior Court
Case #: B152000
District 2 DCA
Division: 1
Opinion Date: 11/07/2001
Subsequent History: None

Petitioner sought review of an order denying her marital privilege claim and requiring her to testify at a preliminary hearing to determine whether her husband committed two 1984 murders. The husband fled to Mexico immediately after the killings and was charged a few days later. Petitioner had no contact with her husband during the 17 years following the killings. The magistrate ordered petitioner to testify, ruling that the marital privilege did not apply where a viable marital relationship no longer exists. The appellate court here reversed. The marital privilege contains no such limitation, and one cannot be created by judicial interpretation, only by legislation to add an exception to the privilege exceptions listed in Evidence Code section 972.