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Texas Rules of Evidence Rule 412

Rule 412. Evidence of Previous Sexual Conduct in Criminal Cases

(a) In General. The following evidence is not admissible in a prosecution for sexual assault, aggravated sexual assault, or attempt to commit sexual assault or aggravated sexual assault:

(1) reputation or opinion evidence of a victim’s past sexual behavior; or (2) specific instances of a victim’s past sexual behavior.

(b) Exceptions for Specific Instances. Evidence of specific instances of a victim’s past sexual behavior is admissible if: (1) the court admitsthe evidence in accordance with subdivisions (c) and (d); (2) the evidence: (A) is necessary to rebut or explain scientific or medical evidence offered by the prosecutor; (B) concerns past sexual behavior with the defendant and is offered by the defendant to prove consent;

(C) relates to the victim’s motive or bias; (D) is admissible under Rule 609; or (E) is constitutionally required to be admitted; and (3) the probative value of the evidence outweighs the danger of unfair prejudice.

(c) Procedure for Offering Evidence. Before offering any evidence of the victim’s past sexual behavior, the defendant must inform the court outside the jury’s presence. The court must then conduct an in camera hearing, recorded by a court reporter, and determine whether the proposed evidence is admissible. The defendant may not refer to any evidence ruled inadmissible without first requesting and gaining the court’s approval outside the jury’s presence.

(d) Record Sealed. The court must preserve the record of the in camera hearing, under seal, as part of the record.

(e) Definition of “Victim.” In this rule, “victim” includes an alleged victim.

History: Added Feb. 25, 1998, eff. March 1, 1998; amended effective January 1, 2007; amended effective April 1, 2015.

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