Spillover Theory Law and Legal Definition

Spillover theory refers to the legal principle of separating the same evidence that is relevant to both a defendant and a codefendant. The spillover theory is applicable only when a defendant can show that trial with a codefendant would substantially prejudice a defendant’s case if a jury might wrongly use evidence against the defendant. The spillover theory ascertains whether a jury uses the same evidence separately that is relevant to each defendant and renders a fair and impartial judgment. [United States v. Jackson, 149 Fed. Appx. 69 (3d Cir. Pa. 2005)].