Sure, there are rules at Department of Motor Vehicles hearings—but no North Carolina Rules of Evidence, now that the Court of Appeals has held that the long-memorized dictates of criminal trials don’t apply to civil revocation hearings. The court did not call the case a question of first impression, but it also did not cite any prior law controlling the issue.
Manning v. Anagnost At trial, plaintiff repeatedly attacked the defendant-doctor’s testimony that he had personally examined plaintiff’s decedent after she fell. By calling into question the doctor’s credibility, plaintiff opened the door for the doctor to present witnesses who testified as to his character for truthfulness.
State v. Randolph Although the state may not introduce evidence of a written confession unless that written statement bears certain indicia of voluntariness and accuracy, so long as oral statements are not obtained in violation of the Constitution, a defendant’s own statement is admissible when offered against him at trial as an exception to the hearsay rule. A police investigator could testify as to what defendant told him (prior to defendant’s assertion that he didn’t want to answer any more questions).
Social media use has been mainstream for years now and for that reason, it is becoming increasingly common for the government to rely on evidence obtained through social media when investigating and prosecuting criminal activity.
State v. Davis Defendant’s writings, which he characterized as fictional, described nonconsensual anal sex with an adult woman. This encounter, even if true, was not sufficiently similar to the acts of which defendant was accused – anally penetrating his young son – to be admissible.
Fisher Housing Companies v. Hendricks Where a contractor who builds “stick-built” homes testified that he had no experience with modular homes, the trial court correctly determined that the contractor lacked the requisite level of skill to testify as an expert in the construction of a modular home.
Haithcox v. Flynt Amtex, Inc. Where a forensic psychiatrist testified that interviewing third parties was a common practice in her field, the Industrial Commission could consider her testimony under N.C. R. Evid. 703.
State v. Avent Although defendant was relying on an alibi defense, the amendment of the murder date in the indictment did not prejudice him. He was still able to present an alibi for the corrected date of the murder; moreover, witness statements and the autopsy gave the correct date, so defendant was not surprised by the amendment of the indictment.
State v. Mason When a police officer testified about the victim’s statements at the scene of the crime, the trial court instructed the jury that the testimony was being admitted for corroborative purposes only. Since the testimony was not admitted to prove the truth of the matters asserted, defendant’s constitutional right to confront the witnesses against him was not implicated.
State v. Harris The population geneticists -- who made the determinations about the probability of an unrelated, randomly chosen person being the one who contributed to the DNA mixture taken from the victim’s rape kit – were unavailable to testify. Nonetheless, SBI Agent Mackenzie Dehaan gave her opinion that the statistical information upon which she relied in developing her opinion regarding the significance of the DNA match was of a type reasonably relied upon by experts in the field of DNA analysis, such being admissible under N.C. R. Evid. 703. The trial court did not err in admitting the statistical information.