Was Court's Decision In Allowing Evidence That the Defendant Had Assaulted the Complainant Preveiously Appropriate
In People v. Angel (238 AD2d 210 [1st Dept 1997]) the First Department held that the trial court's decision allowing the introduction of evidence that the defendant had previously assaulted the complainant was appropriate since it was highly probative to establish the defendant's motive and his intent and to explain the relationship between the parties leading up to the instant incident.
But the admitted evidence was that of a prior assault against the same complainant and thus was relevant to the defendant's motive and intent as to that complainant.
In People v. Gonzalez, 188 AD2d 364 [1st Dept 1992]) the Court held that denial of severance of the 12-count indictment involving six separate offenses against eight women was not error since the " ' "over-all pattern" ' of criminal conduct was of more than sufficient uniqueness to constitute a distinctive modus operandi."
Except for the circumstance that this indictment charges two separate incidents of sexual assault against two different victims, there has been no showing of any "over-all pattern" of conduct on the defendant's part. Nor could there be since the charges against the defendant only involve two incidents occurring months apart against children of different genders.