What Is The Basic Facts On The Case Of Coy V. Iowa

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The basic facts on the case of Coy v. Iowa (1988) are that: The defendant John Avery Coy was arrested in August of 1985, on charges of sexually assaulting two thirteen-year-old-girls (Coy v. Iowa, 1988). The state prosecutor made a motion, at the trail of Coy, to allow the two girls to testify behind a screen or by using a closed-circuit television, to avoid further traumatizing the thirteen-year-olds (Coy v. Iowa, 1988). Before this case, “ The Iowa legislature’s purpose was to assure the fair and compassionate treatment of victims and to protect them from intimidation and future injury. Iowa stature allowed for a child to testify via closed-circuit television or by videotape” (Thuet, 1994, p.11). Therefore, because of Iowa’s statutory procedure, …show more content…

The jury found him guilty and convicted him (Coy v. Iowa, 1988). Coy appealed and argued, “that Iowa Code 910A, which provides for the use of a screen in child sexual abuse cases, violated his Sixth Amendment right to confront his accusers face-to-face” (Coy v. Iowa case brief, 2014). Coy also claimed, “the code violated his right to due process, since having a screen placed between him and the girls made him appear guilty before he was properly tried” (Coy v. Iowa case brief, 2014). Since Iowa Supreme Court upheld the statute (the procedure and the use of the screen), they affirmed Coy’s conviction (Thuet, 1994). However, Coy was not satisfied with the conviction and sough review by the United States Supreme …show more content…

Iowa (Coy v. Iowa case brief, 2014). “The majority found that the defendant’s right to face-to-face confrontation had been violated in the case” (Thuet, 1994, p. 16). The state argued that the purpose for the statue was too protect the children and without the protection some cases would not even make it into court. They argued that, if the child’s testimony went unheard there was no real vital evidence that would convict the defendant. However, the Supreme Court rejected the arguments from the state and stated that, “the necessity of protecting the victims of sexual abuse outweighed the right of confrontation” (Thuet, 1994, p. 16). This case was the first case that the Court conclusively stated that the Confrontation Clause guarantees the defendants the right to a face-to-face meeting with the witnesses against them (Thuet, 1994). “Justice Scalia described the ‘irreducible literal meaning’ of the Confrontation Clause as the “’right to meet face-to-face all those who appear and give evidence at the trail” (Coy v. Iowa, 487 U.S. 1012 (1988)). When questioned about the fact that children witnesses can be damaged psychologically and also may fear the defendant, so that when taking the stand, their testimony might fall short of the truth. Justice Scalia stated, “confrontation may reveal a child witness who has been coached by a malevolent adult” (Coy v. Iowa, 487 U.S. 1012 (1988)). Expressing

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