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35 William Mitchell Law Review 1372 (2009)


This article first examines how Minnesota’s character evidence doctrine developed, with a particular focus on the historical confusion regarding the propriety of the propensity inference. It then examines current case law and argues that Minnesota’s current Spreigl doctrine routinely allows propensity evidence. It finally proposes a choice between abandoning the current Spreigl doctrine and repealing the character rule itself. The author takes no position on which alternative should be chosen, but either is better than the status quo. The current doctrine in Minnesota is a Potemkin village.

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