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U.S. v. Corey, 207 F.3d 84 (1st Cir. App. 2000)

Case (cite)
U.S. v. Corey, 207 F.3d 84 (1st Cir. App. 2000)
Year
2000
State
Maine
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
Cooney
Summary of reasons for ruling
The district court acted well within its discretion in rejecting Corey's narrow contention that Agent Cooney had relied on "nothing more than his recollection of what others had told him," so this Court need not consider whether the Cooney testimony would have been inadmissible under Rule 703 had he relied exclusively on the telephone conversation to Smith and Wesson employees. Moreover, there is no need to determine whether Agent Cooney's partial reliance on the telephone conversation with Smith and Wesson employees somehow rendered his otherwise well-supported expert opinion suspect under either the Federal Rules of Evidence or the Confrontation Clause. Tere is no need to comment on the sufficiency of the government's evidence on the nexus element. Obviously, however, the jury remained free to discredit Agent Cooney's opinion in whole or in part.Accordingly, given the factual record before us, the district court acted well within its discretion in allowing the jury to consider the expert testimony provided by ATF Agent Michael Cooney relating to the "interstate nexus" element.
The jurisdiction’s standard for expert admissibility at the time – list all that apply: (Frye), (Daubert), (Post-2000 Rule 702), (Other)
Daubert; FRE 702
Did lower court hold a hearing
Y
Names of prosecution expert(s) two testified at hearing
Cooney
Names of defense expert(s) who testified at hearing (or None).
None
Discussion of 2009 NAS Report (NAS2009) or PCAST report (PCAST)
N
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
Y
Ruling on 702(a) – the expert will help / assist the jury
Y
Ruling on 702(b) – the testimony is based on sufficient facts or data
Y
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

Dissenting opinion notes that “To accommodate a minor inconvenience in the presentation of evidence by the [**25] government, the majority allows a major incursion into a criminal defendant’s Sixth Amendment right to confrontation. 15Link to the text of the note This unfortunate outcome is the result of allowing so-called “expert” testimony contrary to the requirements of Federal Rule of Evidence 702. The majority goes further astray by failing to call upon the government to make an adequate showing of reasonable reliance under Federal Rule of Evidence 703. This regrettable development is especially egregious where, as [*93] here, the “experts in the particular field” are federal law enforcement officers testifying regarding a self-serving subject matter. Finally, the majority simply fails to take into account the fact that the use of hearsay evidence in a criminal case must pass constitutional muster.”