Superior Court of New Jersey, Law Division, Camden
Alexander Levin, Assistant Prosecutor, for plaintiff (Mary
Eva Colalillo, Camden County Prosecutor, attorney).
Crisonino, attorney for defendant.
Indictment Number 2549-08-15, defendant E.R. is charged with
the following offenses: first-degree aggravated sexual
assault in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:14-2a(1) (Count One);
second-degree sexual assault in violation of N.J.S.A.
2C:14-2b (Count Two); and second-degree endangering the
welfare of a child in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:24-4a (Count
State has filed a motion seeking to admit the statements that
the mother of the victim made to a physician pursuant to
N.J.R.E. 803(c)(4). The two-year-old child did not make any
statements to the physician. The issue before the court is
whether statements made to a treating physician by someone
other than the patient are admissible under the Rules of
Evidence. There are no New Jersey cases that address this
question. Therefore, this is an issue of first impression
before the court.
State alleges that on April 24, 2015, A.C. picked up her
two-year-old daughter, R.R., the alleged victim, pursuant to
a custody agreement with R.R.'s father, defendant E.R.
After she arrived home with R.R., A.C. gave her daughter a
bath and later observed what she described as a green
yellowish discharge on R.R.'s panties and took R.R. to
was treated at the hospital and tested positive for
gonorrhea. While being treated at Cooper Hospital, Dr.
Stephanie Lanese of the N.J. C.A.R.E.S. Institute provided a
consultation. Dr. Lanese prepared a report documenting her
medical evaluation of R.R. and her recommendations for
treatment. The doctor's report states, "prior to
proceeding with the examination, I attempted to speak with
[R.R.] with mom present, but she would not talk to me."
The patient, a two-year-old child, did not provide any
statement to the physician.
mother advised the physician that after picking up the child
and bringing her home, she went to bathe the child. At that
time, the child was not wearing panties. After bathing the
child, the mother put panties on the child as she was
dressing. Later when the child went to use the bathroom, the
mother noticed a discharge on these panties. The mother
reported that she had not seen the child for approximately
three months prior to this visit.
upon her examination and evaluation, Dr. Lanese reported that
gonorrhea is a sexually transmitted disease which is unlikely
to be transferred through accidental or innocent means. The
doctor further concluded that the normal incubation time for
gonorrhea is between two and fourteen days, with a discharge
presenting between three and seven days after the disease is
contracted. Additionally, the history provided by the mother
indicated that the mother did not have gonorrhea during her
pregnancy or when the child was born. The doctor concluded
that the child had contracted gonorrhea within a week or two
of her visit to the hospital.
upon the report of this physician, detectives obtained
consent to obtain body exemplars and urine samples from the
five males residing at the defendant's residence. This is
the residence where the child had been living. Defendant was
the only resident who tested positive for gonorrhea.
Subsequently during questioning by detectives, defendant
admitted to contact between his penis and the child's
New Jersey Standards for Admitting Statements Made for
the Purpose of ...