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State v. Boss, 577 S.W.3d 509 (Mo. Ct. App. 2019)

Case (cite)
State v. Boss, 577 S.W.3d 509 (Mo. Ct. App. 2019)
Year
2019
State
Missouri
Type of proceeding
Appellate
Type of claim
Evidentiary
Expert evidence ruling reversing or affirming on appeal:
Admitted
What was the ruling?
Correct to Admit
Type of evidence at issue:
Firearms identification
Defense or Prosecution Expert
Prosecution
Name of expert(s) who were the subject of the ruling
Jason Crafton
Summary of reasons for ruling
The court reviewed the expert's testimony re the reliability of the AFTE theory of identification and ruled that it was sufficiently reliable under state rule of evidence (modeled after rule 702). The court noted that Defendant could use NAS2008 to challenge the testimony during cross-examination, but the report itself was not enough to be the basis for excluding the evidence.
The jurisdiction’s standard for expert admissibility at the time – list all that apply: (Frye), (Daubert), (Post-2000 Rule 702), (Other)
State version of 702; Wright (Daubert plus "other factors may also be relevant)
Did lower court hold a hearing
Y
Names of prosecution expert(s) two testified at hearing
Crafton
Names of defense expert(s) who testified at hearing (or None).
Discussion of 2009 NAS Report (NAS2009) or PCAST report (PCAST)
NAS2009
Discussion of error rates / reliability
N
Frye Ruling
N
Limiting testimony ruling
N
Language imposed by court to limit testimony
N/A
Ruling based in prior precedent / judicial notice
N
Daubert ruling emphasizing – which factors – (list 1-5)
N/A
Ruling on qualifications of expert
N
Ruling on 702(a) – the expert will help / assist the jury
N
Ruling on 702(b) – the testimony is based on sufficient facts or data
N
Ruling on 702(c) – the testimony is the product of reliable principles and methods
Y
Ruling on 702(d) – reliable application of principles and methods to the facts of the case
N

Notes

1. The review standard re admissibility of evidence in Missouri: “[W]e will not disturb this [broad] discretion unless it is against the logic of the circumstances and so unreasonable as to show a lack of careful consideration.” 2. In determinating the realiability of expert testimonies, Missouri adopted the same flexible Daubert standard, “[n]o single factor is necessarily disposiive of the reliability of a particular expert’s testimony.” 3. The court acknowledged NAS2008’s potential challange to firearms identification’s scientific validity, but ruled that not enough to render the testimony inadmissble. “[Defendant] was free to challenge [the expert’s] conclusions and point out the weakness of analysis to the jury during cross-examination on the basis of this report . . . However, weight and credibility are the province of the jury . . . Vigorous cross-examination, presentation of contrary evidence, and careful instruction on the burden of proof are the traditional and appropriate means of attacking shaky but admissble evidence.” (internal quotation ommitted)