MENU

Family Law

Child Abuse and the Confrontation Clause: Ohio v. Clark - Podcast

Criminal Law & Procedure Practice Group Podcast
John C. Richter March 12, 2015

The United States Supreme Court heard oral arguments in Ohio v. Clark on March 2, 2015. Two questions are presented to the Court: (1) Whether an individual's obligation to report suspected child abuse makes that individual an agent of law enforcement for purposes of the Confrontation Clause; and (2) whether a child's out-of-court statements to a teacher in response to the teacher's concerns about potential child abuse qualify as “testimonial” statements subject to the Confrontation Clause. On March 17, 2010, a Cleveland preschool teacher noticed injuries to a three-year-old student. When asked, the child indicated that her mother’s boyfriend, Darius Clark, had caused the injuries. Clark was arrested and convicted of child abuse after the teacher relayed her concerns to a child-abuse hotline, as required by state law. On appeal Clark claimed that the admission of the child’s out-of-court statements to the teacher violated his Sixth Amendment right to confront the witnesses against him. The Supreme Court of Ohio agreed, holding that because state law required the teacher to report suspected incidences of child abuse, the teacher was acting as an agent for law enforcement when inquiring about the child’s injuries. Therefore, the child’s out-of-court statements could only be admitted if the primary purpose of the teacher’s questioning was to address an ongoing emergency. Because the child was not in immediate danger of further injury, the out-of-court statement could not be admitted.

  • John C. Richter, Partner, King & Spalding

Lozano v. Alvarez - Post-Decision SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 3-26-14 featuring Margaret Ryznar
Margaret Ryznar March 26, 2014

Margaret RyznarOn March 5, 2014, the Supreme Court issued its decision in Lozano v. Alvarez. The question at issue was whether a federal district court considering a petition under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, for the return of an abducted child, may equitably toll the running of the one-year filing period when the abducting parent has concealed the whereabouts of the child from the left-behind parent.

In a 9-0 opinion delivered by Justice Thomas, the Court held that the one-year period may not be equitably tolled, even if the abducting parent has concealed the child's whereabouts until after the one-year period has passed. Justice Alito filed a concurring opinion, in which Justices Breyer and Sotomayor joined. The opinion of the Second Circuit was affirmed.

To discuss the case, we have Margaret Ryznar, who is an Associate Professor of Law and Dean’s Fellow at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law.

Oral Arguments in the Contraceptive Mandate Case: Sebelius v. Hobby Lobby Stores, Inc. - Podcast

Religious Liberties Practice Group Podcast
Robert A. Destro, Adèle Keim March 26, 2014

Hobby Lobby

On March 25, 2014, the contraceptive mandate case was argued in the U.S. Supreme Court. Hobby Lobby Stores’ owners have no moral or other objection to the use of 16 of 20 contraceptives required by the contraceptive mandate under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), but cite their deeply held religious beliefs in objecting to providing or paying for four others they see as possibly life-threatening. How will the Supreme Court rule? Does the Religious Freedom Restoration Act of 1993 (RFRA), allow Hobby Lobby a way around the ACA ‘s contraceptive mandate? Our experts reviewed the oral arguments and took questions from the audience in this Courthouse Steps Teleforum.

Featuring:

  • Prof. Robert A. Destro, Professor of Law, and Director, Interdisciplinary Program in Law & Religion, The Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law
  • Adele Keim, Counsel, The Becket Fund for Religious Liberty

[Listen now!]

Lozano v. Alvarez - Post-Argument SCOTUScast

SCOTUScast 12-19-13 featuring Margaret Ryznar
Margaret Ryznar December 19, 2013

Margaret RyznarOn December 11, 2013, the Supreme Court heard oral argument in Lozano v. Alvarez. The question at issue is whether a federal district court considering a petition under the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction, for the return of an abducted child, may equitably toll the running of the one-year filing period when the abducting parent has concealed the whereabouts of the child from the left-behind parent.

To discuss the case, we have Margaret Ryznar, who is an Associate Professor of Law and Dean's Fellow at the Indiana University Robert H. McKinney School of Law.