Hearings resume April 26-28

Updated: March 29, 2004, 8:15 PM ET
Associated Press

EAGLE, Colo. -- A pretrial hearing Friday regarding what evidence can be introduced in the Kobe Bryant sexual assault case was canceled Monday due to scheduling conflicts, a state courts spokeswoman said.

The next scheduled hearing in the case is April 26-28.

State District Judge Terry Ruckriegle last week scheduled the hearing Friday to continue arguments on the defense's request to throw out certain evidence, including a T-shirt stained with the alleged victim's blood and tape-recorded statements that Bryant made to investigators the night after the alleged attack last summer.

Courts spokeswoman Karen Salaz said after last week's hearing ended Thursday that progress had been slower than anticipated, requiring the additional day.

The evidence-admissibility motion is one of several still undecided. Also expected to continue during the April 26-28 hearing was witness testimony on the sexual history of the alleged victim.

Ruckriegle also is expected to begin hearing arguments on the defense's argument that the state's rape-shield law, barring defense attorneys from introducing irrelevant evidence about an alleged victim's sexual history, is unconstitutional.

The judge has yet to rule on whether information about the alleged victim's medical or mental health history can be introduced as evidence.

Bryant, 25, faces four years to life in prison or 20 years to life on probation if convicted of felony sexual assault. He has said he had consensual sex with the 19-year-old Eagle woman last June at the Vail-area resort where she worked.


Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press