Supreme Court says accused can reject remote expert testimony

Jun 23, 2020

LANSING, MI (MPRN)--   Allowing witnesses in criminal trials to testify remotely violates the Michigan and US constitutions – unless the defense agrees. 

That decision came Monday from the Michigan Supreme Court.

It was a 6-0 decision. The court said remote testimony can violate a defendant’s right to confront witnesses. 

Marquette County Prosecutor Matthew Wiese is the president-elect of the Prosecuting Attorneys Association of Michigan. He says the decision creates problems for courts. 

“The problems that it presents are basically all the things we’re dealing with right now during the COVID-19 epidemic, trying to conduct court hearings and jury trials and trials remotely.”

The case was sent back to the state Court of Appeals, which must decide whether the video testimony might have changed the result in the criminal sexual conduct case.