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State v. Frederick, 2019 UT App 152 (Sept. 19, 2019)

Sep 19, 2019

Affirming a conviction for aggravated sexual abuse of a child, the court of appeals rejected the defendant’s argument that propensity evidence was improperly admitted under Utah R. Evid. 404(c).  The court emphasized that evidence admitted under rule 404(c) is relevant and admissible precisely because it shows a propensity to commit child molestation, and, thus, such evidence cannot be unfairly prejudicial based solely on its tendency to show such a propensity.  Judge Mortensen’s concurring opinion singled out language in the advisory committee notes that suggested court should consider the Shickles factors, directing trial courts to “ignore this misdirection.”