Rethinking Confrontation After Crawford


Dale A. Nance


A recent decision by the United States Supreme Court has substantially changed the formal interpretation of the Confrontation Clause. This essay argues that it is important to recognize the more fundamental change that the case represents, a change in the rationale lying behind the doctrine. Ultimately, this more fundamental change shifts the constitutional doctrine from a focus on preventing jury error to a focus on preventing prosecutorial abuse. Whether this laudable shift will be fully effectuated in the details of the doctrine remains to be seen.


Confrontation Clause, Crawford v. Washington, Hearsay, Ohio v. Roberts, Testimonial Evidence

Publication Date


Document Type


Place of Original Publication

International Commentary on Evidence

Publication Information

2 International Commentary on Evidence, Issue 1 Article 2 (2004)

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COinS Dale A. Nance Faculty Bio