10-25-09 Hearsay_Handout_1

10-25-09 Hearsay_Handout_1 - H earsay Handout #1 Page...

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Hearsay  Handout  #1 Page 1 of 15 pages Notes on Hearsay The problem of simple testimonial evidence takes the following form: U     = utterance A     = fact The utterance   U   is a basis for the possible inference of fact   A . In the case of simple testimonial evidence, the question is how one moves from utterance U   to fact   A , the question is what legitimates the inference   from evidence   U .
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Hearsay  Handout  #1 Page 2 of 15 pages The law of evidence takes the view that judgments about the validity and strength of inferences from testimonial evidence – i.e., judgments about the credibility of witnesses – depend on judgments about the following testimonial qualities or attributes include (which are listed in no particular order): veracity {sincerity; truthfulness} memory objectivity {contra: bias, interest} ability to communicate {narrate} ability to perceive There are several ways to portray the role of these testimonial qualities. One way of picturing them is the following:
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Hearsay  Handout  #1 Page 3 of 15 pages
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Hearsay  Handout  #1 Page 4 of 15 pages As complicated as the above diagram is, it depicts only simple testimonial evidence. It does not depict hearsay evidence. Hearsay is a distinctive form of testimonial evidence. Hearsay is distinctive because it involves a testimonial statement about a testimonial statement ; it is an utterance about an utterance . Hence, instead of involving (merely) an inference from an utterance to some event, hearsay involves an inference from an utterance ---> to another utterance --> to some event This two-stage process can be portrayed in the following way:
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Hearsay  Handout  #1 Page 6 of 15 pages When  testimonial  evidence  takes  the  form  of hearsay  (as depicted  in the  above  diagram),   two *  sets of testimonial  attributes * * are implicated  in judgments  about   the thrust and  probative value of testimonial evidence. This  is because  hearsay  involves * **  two  testimonial  reports * ***  and,  because  of  this, two * **** sets of testimonial attributes  associated  with  those two * *****  reports  must be evaluated.   So,   when   hearsay   appears,   reasoning   about   testimonial   evidence   takes   the  following  more complex form: *   At least  two sets. * * A/k / a  testimonial  qualities. * ** At least. * *** A/k / a  utterances. * **** Or more. * ***** Or more.
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Hearsay  Handout  #1 Page 7 of 15 pages A  = sensory accuracy  O  = objectivity   V  = veracity   N  = ability to narrate [ M  = memory, but memory  is absent in the above diagram; in the above diagram   memory   M  is viewed  as an aspect of  O , as an aspect of the quality of objectivity]
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Hearsay  Handout  #1 Page 8 of 15 pages The above  depiction  of the  nature  of hearsay  perhaps  suggests  that  hearsay  is 
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This note was uploaded on 01/31/2010 for the course LAW 7330 taught by Professor Lushing during the Fall '05 term at Yeshiva.

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10-25-09 Hearsay_Handout_1 - H earsay Handout #1 Page...

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