Expert Witness In Sexual Abuse Cases In Arizona
Expert testimony is allowed in cases involving sexual abuse. See:
State v. Lindsey, 149 Ariz. 472, 473-74, 720 P.2d 73, 74-75 (1986). the Lindsey court "recognized that expert testimony on recantation and other problems afflicting sexual abuse victims may explain a victim's seemingly inconsistent behavior and aid jurors in evaluating the victim's credibility."
State v. Moran, 151 Ariz. 378, 381, 728 P.2d 248, 250 (1986) (interpreting Lindsey).
But this has been an exception consistently confined to that context. Cf. State v. Lee, 191 Ariz. 542, 545, 959 P.2d 799, 802 (1998) (profile evidence may not be used to prove drug courier activity).
Moreover, the rationale for permitting the testimony in sexual abuse cases is not present here. In sexual abuse cases, victims may exhibit behaviors which might be attributed by jurors to "inaccuracy or prevarication" without the benefit of expert testimony that the behaviors are entirely consistent with victimization. See Lindsey, 149 Ariz. at 474, 720 P.2d at 75. the record reveals no such problem in this theft case.