Commonwealth v. Wardsworth

The Supreme Judicial Court vacated and set aside Defendant's convictions for murder in the first degree, armed assault with intent to murder, and firearm offenses, holding that four trial errors required that the verdicts be vacated and set aside and this matter remanded to the superior court for a new trial. Specifically, the Supreme Judicial Court held (1) the trial court erred in admitting a coventurer's statements against Defendant under the joint venture exemption to the hearsay rule, and admission of the statements was barred by the Sixth Amendment; (2) the trial court erred in admitting the opinion of the Commonwealth's gang expert, and the error was prejudicial; (3) the trial court erred in allowing police witnesses to give their opinions as to the identity of individuals depicted in surveillance footage; and (4) the prosecutor engaged in impermissible argument during closing, and a new trial was required. View "Commonwealth v. Wardsworth" on Justia Law