State v. David Bass (A-118-13; 072669)
The limitation on defendant’s cross-examination of Sinclair constituted reversible error. Defendant is entitled to a new trial on the charges of murder, attempted murder and the possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose. In addition, the substitute expert read portions of the deceased medical examiner’s autopsy report to the jury, rather than testifying based on his own observations and conclusions, which violated defendant’s confrontation rights. On retrial, any expert testimony by a substitute medical examiner should conform to State v. Michaels, 219 N.J. 1, cert. denied, 135 S. Ct. 761, (2014), and State v. Roach, 219 N.J. 58 (2014), cert. denied, 135 S. Ct. 2348 (2015). Defendant was not entitled to an instruction on the use of force against an intruder because he voluntarily admitted the victims to his room.