Trial and Evidence
As stated by (Garner and Anderson) “criminal and civil trials would be a lot longer if there were no controls on testimony and the information that is allowed. So to minimize the confusion and to make the trials more manageable, all evidence must be relevant, material, and competent. Competent Evidence means-any evidence that is relevant and reliable and not otherwise excludable. (Gardner and Anderson) Evidence that is relevant means that if it has a tendency to make a material fact more or less probable. And reliable evidence means evidence that possesses a sufficient degree of likelihood that it is true and accurate. (Gardner and Anderson)
The judge in a court proceedings is needed to ensure that each party to a court case have a fair trial, the judge strives to make sure that any and all evidence that is presented in a court of law or administrative proceeding is reliable, material, and relevant to the cases at hand. Sometimes testimonies, documents, and exhibits that do not meet some of the criteria that are expected in court can be declared inadmissible in court. Inadmissible evidence is heard orally or tangible evidence that cannot be turned in to a judge or jury in court because it runs amuck of certain procedures. Some inadmissible evidence usually lacks reliability and that means that it isn’t trustworthy. When you’re demonstrating reliability it requires laying down a foundation. Like say for example an expert witness maybe called to the stand to testify and a lawyer may ask him about his background, education, and how much training in his profession before asking him for his opinion. This background information helps to establish that the expert opinion itself is reliable.
Sometimes a judge may not allow evidence because it may not be relevant to a case meaning it doesn’t do anything to prove or dis-prove any of the issues involving to the case. They may exclude some evidence due to it being relevant for other reasons. Like this example, a judge may not allow evidence that may confuse the jury, duplicative, or unfairly prejudicial to any of the people involved.( C. Delich; 2003)( B. Harris;2003)
CRAWFORD v. WASHINGTON No. 02–9410. Argued November 10, 2003—Decided March 8, 2004
(On August 5, 1999, Kenneth Lee was stabbed at his apartment. Police arrested petitioner later that night. After giving petitioner and his wife Miranda warnings, detectives interrogated each of them twice. Petitioner eventually confessed that he and Sylvia had gone in search of Lee because he was upset over an earlier incident in which Lee had tried to rape her. The two had found Lee at his apartment, and a fight ensued in which Lee was stabbed in the torso and petitioner’s hand was cut. The Washington Court of Appeals reversed. It applied a nine-factor test to determine whether Sylvia’s statement bore particularized guarantees of trustworthiness, and noted several reasons why it did not: The statement contradicted one she had previously given; it was made in response to specific questions; and at one point she admitted she had shut her eyes during the stabbing. The court considered and rejected the State’s argument that Sylvia’s statement was reliable because it coincided with petitioners to such a degree that the two “interlocked.” The court determined that, although the two statements agreed about the events leading up to the stabbing, they differed on the issue crucial to petitioner’s self-defense claim: “[Petitioner’s] version asserts that Lee may have had something in his hand when he stabbed him; but Sylvia’s version has Lee grabbing for something only after he has been stabbed.” App. 32. Roberts’ failings were on full display in the proceedings below. Sylvia Crawford made her statement while in police custody, herself a potential suspect in the case. Indeed, she had been told that whether she would be released “depend[ed] on how the