Military Rule of Evidence 404(b): Toothless Giant of the Evidence World
JUDGE ADVOCATE GENERAL'S SCHOOL CHARLOTTESVILE VA
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This thesis examines the history and evolution of the rules of evidence that have restricted admissibility of uncharged misconduct evidence in criminal cases. It then turns to the current developments in this area, including the adoption and interpretation of Federal and Military Rules of Evidence 404 b, and recent legislation that added Rules 413 and 414. This thesis concludes that Rule 404b is already interpreted to admit most, if not all, of the evidence sought to be admitted by new Rules 413 and 414 making the new rules unnecessary for their stated purpose. Since they present a substantial risk of improper application, are arguably unconstitutional, and send a bad message about our system of justice, Military Rules of Evidence 413 and 414 should be eliminated, or at least modified.
- Sociology and Law