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expert witnesses

Jul 19, 2012

Criminal Practice – Evidence – Expert Witnesses – DNA Evidence – Prosecutor’s Comments

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 [...]

Expert Witnesses
Feb 29, 2012

Use of expert witnesses getting more scrutiny in class certifications

In the year since the U.S. Supreme Court made it tougher for large groups of plaintiffs to prove that they should proceed in a class action, courts have been taking a harder look at a key type of evidence plaintiffs use to make that case: expert witness testimony.

Sep 27, 2011

Workers’ Compensation – Occupational Disease – Bicipital Tenosynovitis – Expert Witnesses – Physician & Ergonomist

Baker v. Flowserve Corp. Although there was conflicting evidence as to how much weight plaintiff’s job required him to lift and how repetitively he used tools, plaintiff’s evidence was sufficient to show that his job placed him at an increased risk of developing bicipital tenosynovitis and that the job caused the condition. We affirm the deputy commissioner’s award of benefits.

Feb 18, 2011

Criminal Practice – Maintaining a Dwelling – Possession and/or Sale – Jury Instructions – Marijuana Trafficking – Constitutional – Confrontation Right – Expert Witness – Sentencing – Mitigating Factors

State v. Garnett. (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-07-0153, 20 pp.) (Robert N. Hunter Jr., J.) Appealed from Buncombe County Superior Court. (Zoro J. Guice Jr., J.) N.C. App. Click here for the full text of the opinion. Holding: Even though defendant was charged with maintaining a dwelling for keeping and selling a controlled substance, the trial […]

Jan 21, 2011

Criminal Practice – Statutory Rape – Expert Witnesses – Computer Forensics Expert – Destroying Evidence – Physician – Healing Time – Plain Error Review

State v. Jennings. (Lawyers Weekly No. 11-07-0073, 15 pp.) (Robert C. Hunter, J.) Appealed from Cabarrus County Superior Court. (Tanya T. Wallace, J.) N.C. App. Click here for the full text of the opinion. Holding: Since law enforcement officers are permitted to testify about the practices criminals use in concealing their identity or criminal activity, […]

Sep 10, 2010

Domestic Relations – Alimony – Attorney’s Fees – Expert Witness Fees

  Martin v. Martin. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-07-0866, 12 pp.) (Rick Elmore, J.) Appealed from Buncombe County Superior Court (Marvin P. Pope, J.) N.C. App. Holdings: (1) The trial court did not err in concluding that the defendant’s excess expenditures were voluntary and unreasonable in view of his obligation to pay alimony to the plaintiff […]

Sep 10, 2010

Criminal Practice – Sexual Offense – Child Victim – Expert Witness – Effective Assistance of Counsel

State v. Livengood. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-07-0875, 8 pp.) (Sanford L. Steelman Jr., J.) Appealed from Rowan County Superior Court. (Richard L. Doughton, J.) N.C. App. Holding: On cross-examination, the state’s expert said the physical findings from the victim’s exam could be consistent with rape or with no rape. On re-cross-examination, defense counsel tried to […]

Sep 1, 2010

Criminal Practice – Evidence – Expert Testimony – Child Sexual Abuse – Physical Evidence

State v. Chandler. Contrary to the superior court's ruling, there has been no significant change in the law regarding admissibility of expert testimony in child sexual abuse cases since the time of defendant's trial and appeal. Defendant is not entitled to the relief he sought pursuant to the retroactivity rule of G.S. § 15A-1415(b)(7). Reversed.

Aug 20, 2010

Civil Practice – Costs – Expert Witness Expenses – First Impression – Subpoenas – Out-of-State – Standing

Jarrell v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Hospital Authority. Since defendants' experts testified pursuant to subpoenas, plaintiffs could be taxed with their expenses. Even though plaintiffs contend the subpoenas on the out-of-state experts were ineffective, plaintiffs lack standing to challenge the sufficiency of the subpoenas. We affirm the trial court's award of costs including the defense expe[...]

Aug 18, 2010

Criminal Practice – Constitutional – Confrontation Right – Expert Witness – SBI Analyst – Harmless

State v. Grady. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-07-0803, 10 pp.) (Martha A. Geer, J.) Appealed from New Hanover County Superior Court. (Jerry Cash Martin, J.) N.C. App. Holding: Even assuming it was error to allow an SBI analyst to testify about DNA testing performed by a different SBI agent who left the agency before the trial, […]

Jul 30, 2010

Workers’ Compensation – Causation – Occupational Disease – Rotator Cuff Tear – Ergonomic Expert – Co-Worker’s Performance

Smith v. Valley Proteins. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-16-0717, 17 pp.) (Sanford L. Steelman Jr., J.) Appealed from the Industrial Commission. N.C. App. Unpub. Holding: Since the evaluation of an occupational disease hinges on the characteristics of the particular job, and not on the manner in which a claimant performs that job, it is irrelevant that […]

Jul 25, 2010

Public Utilities – Sewer Easement – Expert Witnesses – Conclusions of Law & Fact – N.C. R. Evid. 704

Cape Fear Public Utility Authority v. Costa. (Lawyers Weekly No. 10-07-0659, 17 pp.) (Donna S. Stroud, J.) (Cheri Beasley, J., dissenting) Appealed from New Hanover County Superior Court. (Paul G. Gessner, J.) N.C. App. Holding: Expert testimony from an attorney and a surveyor was inadmissible in a dispute over the existence of a sewer easement […]

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