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A question for any lawyers out there

edited January 2013 in Everything Else
My thematic class is doing a mock trial and I had a question for some one with a law degree. If the defendant told some one of a crime he committed and no one else heard him say it. Can the other person be called in as a witness to testify that? Would that be admissible as heresay


  • I'm not a lawyer, but that is the very definition of the hearsay rule.
  • I'm not a lawyer, but that is the very definition of the hearsay rule.
    Look at the exception for statements against interest.

  • But the "witness" here didn't witness anything. Isn't the whole point of the hearsay rule that you don't know whether the content that's been related is true -- only that it's been related to you? People make false declarations all the time. And isn't it different than an admission against interest?
  • As stated, the question doesn't give us much to work with to decide whether the testimony falls under the exception. That's why I said look at the exception. It's possible the statement might be admissible, and it's possible that it's not. It depends a lot on what the statement actually was and what you want to use the statement to prove.

    As you say, the main problem with hearsay is its reliability. The statement against interest is considered a little more reliable than some statements because who would make a statement against their interest unless it were true?

    Finally, the defendant will be there, so he can be cross examined regarding the statement.

    The murder trial I had some years ago involved a witness who said that my client told him that, when he shot his fiance, it was no accident. We went round and round arguing about admissibility, and the judge finally admitted it as a statement against interest.
  • Thank you guys. That actually does answer my question
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