Appellate Division, Fourth Department
Good Faith Basis
People v. Loftin
Appealed from Onondaga County Court
Background: The defendant was convicted of two sex felonies. On appeal he contended he was denied the right to cross-examine a prosecution witness. The complainant had a pending charge that was “adjourned in contemplation of dismissal” before the defendant’s trial began. The allegations were similar to those made by the defendant in the present case. The trial judge barred questioning the complainant on that.
Ruling: The conviction is reversed and a new trial is ordered. The ACD was not a dismissal on the merits, therefore the defendant had a good faith basis to inquire. Under the circumstances of the case, the evidentiary ruling is not harmless.
Christine M. Cook for the defendant, and Brenton P. Dadey, Onondaga County District Attorney’s Office