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The Law's the Law, but Fair is Fair: Rape Shield Laws and Officials' Assessments of Sexual History Evidence

NCJ Number
131689
Author(s)
J Horney, C Spohn
Date Published
January 1991
Length
25 pages
Annotation
Recently enacted rape shield laws, which restrict the introduction of evidence of the complainant's prior sexual conduct, have engendered considerable controversy.
Abstract
This paper examines the responses of judges, prosecutors, and defense attorneys in six major urban jurisdictions to a set of hypothetical cases in which evidence of the victim's past sexual conduct is at issue. The different kinds of sexual history evidence evoke different responses from officials, and the specific provisions of the six rape shield statutes also affect officials' judgments. 4 notes, 1 figure, 3 tables, 1 appendix, and 37 references (Publisher's abstract)

Date Published: January 1, 1991