Evidence-Gillers-Fall06 - Fall 2006 Gillers Evidence...

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Fall 2006 Gillers Evidence Outline Rule 401 – Relevance Definition: “Relevant evidence” means evidence having any tendency to make the existence of any fact that is of consequence to the determination of the action more or less probable than it would be without the evidence. Old Chief (401 portion): A party can’t stipulate to a fact to prevent its opponent from bringing the fact out in a way that may be more damning than the stipulation. If the evidence at issue has any tendency to make the existence of any material fact more relevant, it satisfies Rule 401. Problem 2A – fact that Gatsby was speeding 30 miles earlier is relevant to whether he was speeding at the time of the accident – makes it more likely. If the driving conditions were different 30 miles earlier, would lose its relevance. Problem SG5 – fact that Peter did tests on the light bulbs he sold and thought they lasted as long as he promised they did is relevant to his intent, which is an element of fraud. Weight vs. Admissibility: the fact that a jury might not believe the evidence goes to its weight, not its admissibility Sufficiency vs. Admissibility: the fact that the evidence may be insufficient to prove a point doesn’t make it inadmissible, so long as it has some tendency to prove a material point. o Ex: a witness placing defendant in town on the day of a murder is relevant and therefore admissible, though not sufficient to prove he did it. Problem 2B – Girlfriend testifies that Carl hid when the cops came to the house. This is relevant: hiding → flight → consciousness of guilt → consciousness of guilt of the crime charged → tendency to increase likelihood of guilt. Carl says he hid b/c of other outstanding warrant. He can argue this to the jury – goes to weight. His hiding still has relevance to his guilt of the charged crime. Flight is generally relevant, though not sufficient for conviction. Defendant can argue that what he did was not flight, in which case it would not be relevant. o Prosecutor can get a jury instruction that the jury may consider flight as evidence of guilt. Other factors relevant to consciousness of guilt: (1) False identification or aliases, (2) destroyed or concealed evidence, (3) fabricated evidence or suborned perjury, (4) killed, threatened, or otherwise impeded witnesses for prosecution, (5) sought to escape detention, (6) attempted suicide, or (7) sought to bribe public officials Rule 403 – Relevance vs. Prejudice Definition: Although relevant, evidence may be excluded if its probative value is substantially outweighed by the danger of unfair prejudice, confusion of the issues, or misleading the jury, or by considerations of undue delay, waste of time, or needless presentation of cumulative evidence. o
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This note was uploaded on 04/04/2008 for the course LAW ALL taught by Professor Multiple during the Fall '06 term at NYU.

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Evidence-Gillers-Fall06 - Fall 2006 Gillers Evidence...

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