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Name: People v. Saracoglu
Case #: B182220
Court: CA Court of Appeal
District 2 DCA
Division: 3
Opinion Date: 07/09/2007
Summary

The victim’s statement was a spontaneous statement which was not testimonial and therefore its admission was not error. At appellant’s trial on domestic violence charges, the victim did not appear to testify, and her prior hearsay statement to police officers concerning the incident was admitted. On appeal, appellant contended that the trial court erred by admitting the statement to police because it was not an excited utterance, and even if it was, its admission violated the confrontation clause. The appellate court rejected the argument and affirmed. The victim’s statement was a spontaneous utterance. No more than 30 minutes had passed between the incident and the victim’s statement, and it was irrelevant that much of her statement was made in response to questions by police officers. The crucial issue is the declarant’s mental state, and the evidence showed here that the victim was quite distraught. The statement was made while police were dealing with a contemporaneous emergency rather than to produce evidence against appellant, and was therefore non-testimonial. Since the statement about having been assaulted and threatened was non-testimonial, it’s admission was not a confrontation clause violation.