CNN and “Drew’s Law”: Professor Beckett on using hearsay evidence in trials

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

CNN (Jan. 19) -- According to U. of I. law professor Steven Beckett, hearsay evidence is a serious disadvantage to defense lawyers because they cannot cross-examine the person being quoted. Illinois passed a law in 2008 -- dubbed "the Drew Peterson law" or "Drew's law" by the media -- that allows hearsay evidence if prosecutors believe the victim was killed to prevent his or her testimony. "This other witness may truthfully be saying what the person said, but how do we know what the person said is true?" said  Beckett, director of trial advocacy at the College of Law.