An Arkansas jury convicted Abernathy of raping his two minor nieces, S.D. and C.D., who were ten and eleven years old, respectively, at the time of the rapes. The girls are not Abernathy's biological nieces, but rather are the daughters of his wife's sister. Abernathy's conviction was based largely on the trial testimony of the two victims because there was no physical evidence and the victims had initially denied the rapes when interviewed by investigators.
Before trial, Abernathy filed a motion in limine asking to prohibit the admission of any testimony from police investigators, interrogators, and medical personnel expressing an opinion on the credibility of the testifying minors. The trial court ruled this type of testimony would not be allowed.
Judge(s): Kermit Bye
Jurisdiction: U.S. Court of Appeals, Eighth Circuit
Related Categories: Constitutional Law , Criminal Justice , Employment , Expert Witness , Government / Politics
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