Judges are required to sanitize inflammatory “other-crimes” evidence to the extent necessary to balance the state’s right to establish a fact and the defendant’s right to a fair trial, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled.

The per curiam, one-sentence decision upheld an appeals court ruling that too many prejudicial details about a defendant’s involvement in the burning death of a dog were used at his trial on charges of robbery and attempted murder. State v. Collier, A-68-98.

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