Illinois Bar Journal

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Articles on Evidence

Subpoena for medical records January 2009 Illinois Law Update, Page 16 On October 31, 2008, the Illinois Appellate Court, Fourth District, reversed the judgment of the Circuit Court of Logan County denying the state's request for a subpoena duces tecum, seeking release of a defendant's medical records for the day the defendant was charged with driving under the influence (DUI).
Incriminating statements suppressed in first degree murder case December 2008 Illinois Law Update, Page 612 On September 30, 2008, the Illinois Appellate Court, Fourth District, affirmed the judgment of the Circuit Court of McLean County granting the defendant's two motions to suppress evidence. 
The Crawford Confrontation-Clause Bar: Governmental Involvement Is Key to “Testimonial” Hearsay By Hon. Daniel B. Shanes November 2008 Article, Page 574 The author argues that statements are rarely "testimonial" - and thus barred - if the government did not produce them.
Evidence sufficient to uphold conviction for disorderly conduct November 2008 Illinois Law Update, Page 554 On August 20, 2008, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, affirmed the judgment of the Circuit Court of Cook County finding the defendant guilty of disorderly conduct. 
Polygraph Exams in Sex-Offense Cases By Kerry J. Bryson October 2008 Article, Page 528 Despite doubts about their reliability, polygraph exams are required in sex-offense cases. This article discusses the law.
Depositions of Gravely Ill Illinois Claimants By Professor Jeffrey A. Parness September 2008 Column, Page 476  A majority in Berry found that while the trial court ruled correctly the system failed.
Fees for Physician Testimony: What’s Reasonable? By Timothy J. Harris September 2008 Article, Page 460 A look at the governing rules, along with common-sense ways lawyers can keep doctors from charging too much for testifying.
Negligent Spoliation in the Wake of Jones v O’Brien Tire and Battery By Shane M. Carnine September 2008 Article, Page 470 A recent appellate case arguably changes the requirements for a spoliation claim.
Eyewitnesses and the Rashomon Effect By Hon. Ron Spears August 2008 Column, Page 424 Research indicates that eyewitness testimony is less reliable than people think.
No discovery deps allowed By Helen W. Gunnarsson August 2008 LawPulse, Page 384 A recent case underscores the importance of taking a party's evidence - not discovery - deposition if he or she may die before trial.
Correspondence from Our Readers July 2008 Column, Page 330 Sharia law? Voluntary dismissal; confrontation clause; HUD-1
A Quick Guide to the Illinois Dead Man’s Act By William T. Gibbs July 2008 Article, Page 352 According to the hornbooks, the Act bars testimony by someone with an interest in litigation about a conversation with or event occurring in the presence of a decedent. But what does that mean?
No error in allowing evidence of past convictions June 2008 Illinois Law Update, Page 284 On April 3, 2008, the Illinois Appellate Court, Fourth District, affirmed the judgment of the circuit court allowing the prosecution to present evidence of the defendant's prior convictions for aggravated battery and aggravated assault.
When Hearsay Testimony Is a Nonevent Under the Confrontation Clause By Robert J. Steigmann June 2008 Article, Page 304 An Illinois Appellate Court justice says that a witness who disavows his or her own hearsay statements is not "unavailable" as to those statements.
Authentication and Identification of E-Mail Evidence By Hon. William J. Haddad May 2008 Article, Page 252 Learn how to use circumstantial evidence to show that e-mail really came from the purported sender.
No suppression of evidence obtained in violation of Illinois eavesdropping statute April 2008 Illinois Law Update, Page 180 On February 7, 2008, the Illinois Supreme Court affirmed the order of the Circuit Court of Du Page County refusing to suppress evidence obtained in violation of the Illinois eavesdropping statute, 720 ILCS 5/14-2. 
Federal wiretapping evidence admissible though barred by state law By Helen W. Gunnarsson March 2008 LawPulse, Page 118 Evidence gathered in a joint federal-state investigation is admissible in state court if it complies with federal, though not state, eavesdropping law.
Admission of detective’s testimony did not violate the Confrontation Clause February 2008 Illinois Law Update, Page 72 On November 30, 2007, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, affirmed the judgment of the Circuit Court of Cook County sentencing the defendant to 85 years for first degree murder and home invasion.
Diogenes and the Testimonial Whopper By Hon. Ron Spears February 2008 Column, Page 104 What can we do to improve the accuracy and honesty of witness testimony? Not enough.
How to Admit or Exclude PBT Results By Eric R. Waltmire February 2008 Article, Page 92 Police sometimes administer preliminary breath tests to drivers stopped on suspicion of DUI. When and how are the results admissible in a hearing? Here's a look at the cases.
No psych-record access for “garden variety” employee emotional distress claims By Helen W. Gunnarsson February 2008 LawPulse, Page 66 A recent ruling explains when employer-defendants can and cannot get access to employee-plaintiffs' medical and psychological records when employees sue for emotional distress cause by illegal discrimination.
State must establish foundation for admittance of electronic conversation transcript December 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 632 On September 28, 2007, the Illinois Appellate Court, First District, reversed and remanded for new trial the judgment of the Circuit Court of Cook County convicting the defendant of indecent solicitation of a child because the State did “nothing to establish a foundation for the admissibility of the transcripts as evidence.” 
Using Videos at Trial: The Big Picture By Hon. James P. Flannery, Jr. December 2007 Article, Page 642 What foundation is needed to introduce a video at trial in Illinois? Are videos subject to discovery? The author explores that and more.
Burdens of Proof By Hon. Ron Spears November 2007 Column, Page 604 Defining burdens of proof can be hard. But they're easier to understand than to define.
Davis v Washington Narrows the Scope of “Testimonial” Hearsay By Howard W. Anderson, III October 2007 Article, Page 546 Prosecutors can't introduce "testimonial" hearsay unless the defendant had a chance to cross-examine the unavailable declarant. Davis tells us when a statement is not "testimonial."
Admitted negligent acts properly presented to jury when relevant and necessary to plaintiff’s case August 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 404 On June 7, 2007, the Illinois Appellate Court, Fifth District, affirmed the decision of the Circuit Court of Jackson County allowing Michael Rath to present evidence of Carbondale Nursing and Rehabilitation Center's negligence despite the nursing home's admission of certain acts of negligence.
If the Gloves Don’t Fit… By Hon. Ron Spears August 2007 Column, Page 436 Physical evidence can have a huge impact, but know whether it will help or hurt your client.
Rules changed regarding alcohol and drug testing August 2007 Illinois Law Update, Page 404 20 Ill Adm Code 1286 has been amended by adding sub-section 1286.75, effective May 1, 2007. 
How to Admit E-Mail and Web Pages into Evidence By Theodore J. Koerth and Christopher E. Paetsch December 2006 Article, Page 674 The emerging legal standards.
Where Spoliation of Evidence Meets the Duty to Defend By Charles L. Philbrick December 2006 Article, Page 670 A look at the law of spoliation from the insured's perspective.