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5th Edition
ISBN/ISSN: 9781601565853
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ISBN/ISSN: 9781601565860
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ISBN/ISSN: 9781601565860
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Evidence in Context is designed to create a fully contextual understanding of the law of evidence. It contains two relatively detailed case files, quite similar to the material a trial lawyer may have as he or she approaches trial. The first file is a murder case where the issue is the identity of the killer and the defendant is the estranged husband of the victim. The second file is a civil action for defamation brought by a former employee against her very wealthy employer. The cases raise realistic and challenging issues in the law of evidence and allow for a critical assessment of that law. They are followed by over three hundred problems for class analysis and discussion. These problems address the full range of evidentiary issues.

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Table of contents


State v. Mitchell

Grand Jury Indictment
Testimony at First Trial
Brooke Thompson
      Officer Pat Slyviak
      Exhibit 16—Testimony of Maria Pietro
      Exhibit 12—Wilson Studios Letter
      Exhibit 17—Anonymous Letter to Police Department
      Defendant Joe Mitchell

      Joe Mitchell
      Quinn Washington
      Raleigh Porter
      Chris Ravenna

      Street Diagram
      Diagram of Portion of Premises at 1751 Madison
      Section Map of Nita City, Nita
      Full-Body Photo of Leslie Mitchell
      Close-up Photo of Leslie Mitchell
      Photo of Front Door
      Photo of Front of House
      Joe's Handwritten Note to Leslie
      Police Custodian's Property Log
      Sgt. John Pierce Background Information
      Crime Lab Report
      Coroner’s Report

Jury Instructions
Verdict Form

MacIntyre v. Easterfield

      Jesse MacIntyre
      Ross Easterfield
      Kerry Easterfield
      Reverend MacKenzie Taylor
      Kelly Emerson
      Reeve Winsor
      Lee Marlow

      Floor Plan of the Easterfield Home
      Bus Schedule and Certification
      Mass Schedule and Church Certification
      Partial Transcript of MacIntyre’s Guilty Plea
      Partial Transcript of Alice Adams Deposition
      Application for Personal Loan
      Nita Revised Statutes
      Statement of Jesse MacIntyre
      Letter to Reverend Taylor
      Letter from Reverend Taylor
      Statement of Mike Stiko
      Nita Prison Review Board Order and Certification
      Letter from Reverend Taylor to Nita Transit

Nita Criminal Code
Statement of Reeve Winsor
Bank Statement of Ross Easterfield
Deposition Transcript of Maria Zanoni
Bill of Sale for Brooch
Ross Easterfield's Desk Calendar
Easterfield's Letter to Insurance Company
Application to ABC Employment Agency
Peter Steinfels's Opinion Letter and Resume
Jesse MacIntyre's School Record
Nita City Tribune Classified Ad
Video-Recorded Interview-Martha Van Kirk
Email from Lee Marlow to Nita City Athletic Club Board Members
Memorandum Order
Jury Instructions
Verdict Forms
Memorandum of Law

Section II.  Problems

I. Relevance
      A. Common-Sense Inference and the Factual Theory of the Case
      B. Materiality and Logical Relevance
      C. Pragmatic Relevance
      D. Character Evidence; Prior Bad Acts
      E. Conditional Relevance
      F. Habit, Custom or an Organization’s Routine Practice
      G. Policy Exclusions
      H. Statistical and Scientific Evidence
      Review of Relevance (So Far)

II. Impeachment and Rehabilitation
      A. Introduction—Methods of Discrediting a Witness
      B. Bias, Interest, Prejudice, Incapacity
      C. Religious Beliefs
      D. Character for Untruthfulness
      E. Prior Inconsistent Statement
      F. Contradiction
      G. Rehabilitation
      Impeachment Review Problems

III. Burden of Proof and Presumptions
      A. Burden of Proof
      B. Presumptions

IV. Witness Examination and Rulings on Evidence

V. Authentication and the Best Evidence Rule
      A. Authentication
      B. Real Evidence
      C. Original Documents Rule

VI. Hearsay
      A. Definitions—Rule 801(c)
      B. Confrontation Clause
      C. Definitional Exclusions—Rule 801(d)
      D. Hearsay Exceptions—Availability of Declarant Immaterial—Rule 803
      E. Major Documentary Exceptions
      F. Hearsay Exceptions Regarding Unavailability-Rule 804
      G. Hearsay within Hearsay and Impeaching the Hearsay Declarant
      H. The "Catch All" Exception
      Additional Hearsay Problems

VII. Opinion Testimony (Lay and Expert)
      A. General Considerations; Examination
      B. Lay Witness Opinions
      C. Expert Witness Opinions

VIII. Privileges
      A. Marital Privileges
      B. Attorney-Client Privilege
      C. Clergy-Penitent Privilege
      D. Psychotherapist-Patient Privilege
      Review Problems

IX. Judicial Notice

X. Concluding Questions