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Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Ind. Decisions - Supreme Court decides a second case today

In Peter Griffith v. State of Indiana, a 14-page, 5-0 opinion, Justice David concludes:

We hold that under Indiana Evidence Rule 613(b), extrinsic evidence of a prior inconsistent statement may be admitted before or after a witness is given the opportunity to explain or deny the alleged statement. While the preferred method remains that the witness be confronted with the statement prior to the admission of extrinsic evidence, the trial court has wide discretion in making this evidentiary ruling. Several factors may properly sway the trial court to admit or deny extrinsic evidence given the circumstances of the case. To the extent that our prior holding in Hilton could be read to require trial courts to admit extrinsic evidence under Rule 613(b) in a specific sequence, we clarify that Hilton upheld the discretion of the trial court under Rule 613(b) without setting out a requirement for the sequence in which extrinsic evidence must be admitted. In accordance with that interpretation, the trial court did not err in excluding the proposed extrinsic evidence of a prior inconsistent statement offered by Griffith. Griffith’s conviction and sentence are affirmed.

Posted by Marcia Oddi on June 2, 2015 12:01 PM
Posted to Ind. Sup.Ct. Decisions