Are Statements Made to a Victim's Friend Admissible

In People v. Compan 100 P.3d 533 (Colo. App. May 20, 2004), the victim asked a friend to pick her up at her home because her husband, the defendant, was beating her. Upon getting into the friend's car, the victim reiterated that the defendant had just beaten her. The friend took the victim to the hospital for treatment, where the victim was interviewed by the police. When the victim failed to appear at the defendant's trial, the prosecution called the victim's friend. The friend testified to the victim's statements under the excited utterance exception to the hearsay rule. The court of appeals first considered the holding in Crawford. "Here, we conclude that the victim's statements are not testimonial within the meaning of Crawford. The statements were made to the victim's friend, not to a law enforcement or judicial officer. Although the statements were not 'casual or off-hand' because the victim was distraught, they do not qualify as the kind of 'solemn or formal' declarations that the Crawford majority associated with testimonial statements. The victim's statements were not made for the purpose of establishing facts in a subsequent proceeding. Because the statements are not testimonial their admission does not violate the United States, Constitution under the rule of Crawford." Compan, 100 P.3d at 538.