Topping v. People

In Topping v. People, 793 P.2d 1168, 1169 (Colo. 1990), a physician testified from another state by telephone in a sexual assault case. The physician did not testify in person because the trip to do so would be "highly inconvenient." Id. The defendant challenged the telephonic testimony on the ground that it violated his right to confront the witness face-to-face at trial and the Colorado Supreme Court agreed. Id. at 1172. The court stated: Neither the People's desire to minimize witness inconvenience nor the trial court's interest in the application of electronic communication technology to the judicial process, however laudable such concerns might be, constitutes a state policy of sufficient substance to justify abridgment of defendant's sixth amendment right to confront the witness face-to-face when she testified against him. Id.