The Oregon Supreme Court has shot down a request from the defendant in a rape trial for a hearing on his accuser's sexual history to be held in public, affirming the state's rape shield law.
The ruling issued Thursday involves a 1975 law that makes secret a judge's hearings on whether an accuser's sexual history is admissible as evidence at trial.
The court says the secrecy prevents those accused of rape from using the hearings as a public forum to embarrass their accusers.
Portland strip club owner Dean MacBale argued in pretrial hearings that the sexual history of his employee is relevant to her accusations. MacBale is accused of sexual penetration, sodomy and sexual abuse.
MacBale's case now returns to Clackamas County Circuit Court.