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“Road Rage” Murder Trial: Witness Arrives After Harvey Down

“Road Rage” Murder Trial: Witness Arrives After Harvey Down

Witness describes responding officers as professional, Walker as compliant, Harvey on ground 25 feet from minivan.

Our next piece of evidence from the Joseph Walker trial is the transcribed interview of another witness who arrived at the shooting scene after the shots had been fired. There’s frankly not much new here, so I offer it in the interests of completeness.

As per SOP his name has been redacted. Because this transcript was attached as Exhibit I to the defense’s recent motion to dismiss the charges against Walker, I will refer to him as Mr. J.

The interview was conducted by Maryland State Police Investigator Trooper First Class (TFC) Myles Roy, on June 12, 2013, four days after the shooting. (Confusingly, they get TFC Roy’s name correct on the cover of the transcript but repeatedly misidentify him as TFC Taylor in the body of the transcript.)

Mr. J described how he drove up on the scene when Harvey was already on the ground.

Mr. J: When I came up on 97, up on the ramp before you get to 97 actually, there was a minivan on the side. In front of the minivan, there was a gentleman laying down on the ground [Harvey], another gentleman there [presumably Adam Pidel], and another car in front [presumably Harvey’s Honda]. So I thought that doesn’t look good, something happened, maybe I can help. I called 911.

Here the mysterious white pickup truck comes back into the record.

Mr. J: I was on the phone with 911. There was another gentlemen who had pulled over, as well, in a pickup truck. So we were both heading back.

Mr. J and the stranger with the pickup were arriving essentially coincident with first responders.

Mr. J: We could see a gentleman laying on the ground in front of the van. I was off to the side on the berm of the road, the shoulder of the road. A friend [Adam Pidel], it looked like a friend, was leaning over him [Harvey]. Just as we were getting close enough to be able to give any information to 911, Anne Arundel County Police had pulled in. A female officer ran up in front of the van to the person laying on the ground. . . . At that point more police cars were pulling in. So we thought the best thing we could do was get out of the way and, you know, let the police take care of the business they needed to take care of. So that’s a summary of kind of what happened.

Witness Identifies Walker, Harvey, Pidel as Three Persons Outside of Vehicles

TFC Taylor: So when you passed the van, you had mentioned quite a few people, some laying on the ground, some not. So I want to try to separate some of these people.

Mr. J: Actually, it was actually three people. There was actually three people outside of vehicles. There was – from hearing the news report, there was a police officer standing next to his vehicle [Walker, beside his minivan]. There was the gentleman, now deceased [Harvey], laying in front of the vehicle, maybe almost the distance of this room away. And then kneeling over the deceased individual was a what appeared to be a crony, a friend, you know, looking at him, trying to figure out what to do. So those were the three people that were exterior. There appeared to be an adult female in the passenger’s seat of the van. And – I think tow, there may have been three children, but I can say two in the back of the van, as well.

Witness Describes Walker

TFC Roy: The person that was closest to the van, where was he standing?

Mr. J: It looked to me that he was standing next to the driver’s door.

TFC Roy: Can you describe him?

Mr. J: African American gentleman, medium height, about 6-something, 6’ 2” maybe, 6’ 1”, maybe 210, 220-ish pounds. Not a big guy, not a little guy.

No Weapons Were In Evidence

TFC Roy: Did you see a weapon in his hand.

Mr. J: I did not.

TFC Roy: So you didn’t see any weapons —

Mr. J: No weapons.

TFC Roy: — on or near this guy with the van?

Mr. J: I had no idea that this gentleman was shot until I saw Channel 13 News on Sunday night.

TFC Roy: Did you see any weapons or anything closest to the guy that was laying on the ground or the guy over?

Mr. J: I noticed no firearms.

TFC Roy: Well, weapons of any kind.

Mr. J: No knives, no firearms, no nothing like that.

Witness Indicates Harvey Was ~25 Feet In Front of Minivan

TFC Roy: Now you described the distance between the van and the person lying on the ground as approximately the length of this room, which I would say is close to maybe 20 feet.

Mr. J: I would say it’s a little bit more than This is, yeah, 25, 30.

TFC Roy: So about 20, 25 feet.

Mr. J: Yeah.

There’s more with Mr. J, but none of it seems particularly substantive. Of course, if you’d like to read the actual transcript for yourself, here it is:

–-Andrew, @LawSelfDefense

Andrew F. Branca is an MA lawyer and the author of the seminal book “The Law of Self Defense, 2nd Edition,” available at the Law of Self Defense blog, (paperback and Kindle), Barnes & Noble (paperback and Nook), and elsewhere.


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2 things strike me as a mull this statement with the others. In not one statement so far has anyone tried to actually help Harvey as far as I can tell. Pidel in his 911 call said that he didn’t know what to do, but it doesn’t seem like even the cops tried to help Harvey. Maybe I missed it or it just hasn’t been brought forward yet, but surely someone on the scene tried to stop the bleeding, at least I would hope.

Secondly, now we have several statement saying that Harvey was further away from the van than the police sketch indicates. I am not sure if it really means anything but, it is still popping out to me.

    tom swift in reply to Gremlin1974. | March 17, 2014 at 7:59 pm

    I believe you are correct. The supine Mr. Harvey seems to have been left for the most part to wither on the vine.

    Ms. Walker’s 911 call asked for police assistance, not medical assistance.

      Gremlin1974 in reply to tom swift. | March 17, 2014 at 8:37 pm

      I am still waiting on Mrs. Walkers statement, surely there is a statement from the only other person who witnessed all the events. Maybe it is still to come.

        MouseTheLuckyDog in reply to Gremlin1974. | March 17, 2014 at 10:03 pm

        Spousal priveledge?
        In any case, she is not in the exhibit list.

          Gremlin1974 in reply to MouseTheLuckyDog. | March 18, 2014 at 12:19 am

          Ok, see once again, I am a Nurse not a lawyer so I am actually amazed that there is such a thing as “spousal privileged” I had no clue.

          I’m NOT a MD lawyer, but it’s quite common that the State cannot COMPEL one spouse to testify against the other.

          Of course the spouse can CHOOSE to do so.

          Lots of incentives can play into that. (e.g., so how will your kids be raised if BOTH of you are in prison for 20 years?).

          –Andrew, @LawSelfDefense

          tom swift in reply to MouseTheLuckyDog. | March 18, 2014 at 3:29 am

          it’s quite common that the State cannot COMPEL one spouse to testify against the other

          Is it common that she might also not give a police statement?

          JackRussellTerrierist in reply to MouseTheLuckyDog. | March 18, 2014 at 4:02 am

          Perhaps Mrs. W’s rendition hasn’t properly gelled yet.

    Olinser in reply to Gremlin1974. | March 17, 2014 at 8:03 pm

    Gremlin, I’m not sure what you’re reading, but here the witness clearly states that as he was pulling up, police showed up and immediately went to the person on the ground.

      Gremlin1974 in reply to Olinser. | March 17, 2014 at 8:19 pm

      Yea, but if you read Pidel’s statement the first cop that approached basically put him in handcuffs and took him to a squad car. I have seen nothing about them trying to help the man that was shot. Now I am not saying that it didn’t happen, but you think someone would have mentioned it.

        Olinser in reply to Gremlin1974. | March 17, 2014 at 8:35 pm

        Of course they did. Whenever any police or military arrive on the scene, the first thing they do is secure it.

        In this case, from Walker’s biased account to the 911 operator of ‘a police officer was attacked’, they were probably told that Pidel was the threat. So they secured him, then check on Harvey.

          Gremlin1974 in reply to Olinser. | March 17, 2014 at 8:39 pm

          Like I said I am perfectly willing to believe that at least one of them started basic first aid. I was just commenting on that fact that it is not mentioned. Maybe, I am just bias because I am a Nurse, but that seems like something someone would mention.

        May or may not be relevant, but Pidel’s statement also reflects a certain degree of self-absorption. The type of mindset being ‘high’ sometimes brings on. Everything revolves around how it affects him. (Not accusing, just wondering).

          tom swift in reply to 49erDweet. | March 18, 2014 at 3:25 am

          Maybe. On the other hand, he’s the only one who seemed even slightly interested in Harvey’s health as he lay exsanguinating onto the Maryland countryside.

          Gremlin1974 in reply to 49erDweet. | March 18, 2014 at 11:04 am

          If you read the transcript of Pidel’s 911 call he also repeatedly said something to the effect that he “didn’t know what to do” and encouraged Harvey to concentrate on his breathing.

      tom swift in reply to Olinser. | March 17, 2014 at 8:41 pm

      But no statement says that the first responders rendered first aid to Harvey. Mr J’s statement implies that cuffing Pidel was considered a more pressing matter.

      If they really believed that Walker, already on scene, was an officer, why wouldn’t Walker already have Pidel in cuffs?

        “..why wouldn’t they have Walker in cuffs?”

        Didn’t the 911 call transcript indicate he said he was an out-of-state officer? If so, why would he have cuffs? They aren’t self defense items normal officers carry at all times.

The witness didn’t indicate Harvey was 25 feet from the van, the trooper did–and then encouraged the witness to confirm it.

“Approximately” the length of this room, which “I’d say” is close to 20 feet.

So a shifty trooper, spitballing an unmeasured space in a completely different location, then transposes that distance back to the scene and suggests it to the eager ‘witness’, who actually saw nothing happen, who says ‘yeah, maybe more’.

And on this we hang a man for first degree murder?

I’d like to see the room where this interview took place.

This shooting happened around 8:30pm, very dusky if not nearly dark, casting even more of ‘shadow’ on these and the other ‘witness’ observations.

And the police report from the scene places Harvey’s blood spatter at around 8 feet from the front of the Kia.

    bildung in reply to bildung. | March 17, 2014 at 7:45 pm

    The recorded distance, not the days later guestimation, was 7 feet 9 inches IIRC.

      Olinser in reply to bildung. | March 17, 2014 at 8:12 pm

      And? Witnesses are notoriously bad at estimating distances and times.

      The issue will also be confused by being asked ‘how far from the car’.

      Some people will think that they mean from the nearest part of the car, others will estimate from the center of the car. Add that on to normal difficulty in people estimating even the smallest distances, I’m honestly surprised they aren’t further apart.

        tom swift in reply to Olinser. | March 17, 2014 at 8:43 pm

        But Mr J is the first witness we’ve had so far who hadn’t witnessed any of the incident and had nothing to be terribly excited about.

          It’s an excellent point, the numerical distances have mostly been “suggested” by interrogators.
          And I think ThomasD is correct, it is their attempt to “button it down”. IMO hamfisted, but that’s the pattern.

        tom swift in reply to Olinser. | March 17, 2014 at 8:47 pm

        others will estimate from the center of the car

        That would extremely weird.

        Yesterday we had hundreds of posts about the problems witness have in estimating distances. At least two of the witness who have made statements about this incident have specifically mentioned that they consider themselves very poor at estimating distances, but police badgered them anyway until they gave numerical estimates.

          ThomasD in reply to tom swift. | March 17, 2014 at 9:33 pm

          Apologies for the down vote. That was my fat finger on a little phone.

          Based solely on my experiences as a witness I suspect the cops insist on getting hard numbers from witnesses because they know that if they don’t someone else a trial darn well will.

          Even though everyone knows the number will rarely if ever be close and the error will be irrelevant.

        JackRussellTerrierist in reply to Olinser. | March 18, 2014 at 4:06 am

        If Harvey fell forward, add about 6′ to where he was standing when he went down.

    tom swift in reply to bildung. | March 17, 2014 at 7:54 pm

    The witness said 25 to 30 feet. The trooper – for no reason obvious from the transcript – talked him down to 20 to 25.

    Olinser in reply to bildung. | March 17, 2014 at 7:58 pm

    Hey genius, read the actual transcript.

    The witness said it first. The excerpt Branca has here is the trooper going back over it, much later in the interview.

    Gremlin1974 in reply to bildung. | March 17, 2014 at 8:33 pm

    “So a shifty trooper, spitballing an unmeasured space in a completely different location”

    So now you are down to implying investigation malpractice by the state troopers? Also, how do you know that the Trooper doesn’t know exactly what the dimensions of that interview room are, he could have been asking that to see if they guy actually had any clue how far 20 feet was.

    “And on this we hang a man for first degree murder?”

    Who exactly advocated for this? First of all it is overly dramatic because of the hanging imagery, second of all the discussion here has largely been on whether Walker was justified in using deadly force in self defense, not what he should or should not be charged with nor what his conviction should be, if any.

    “This shooting happened around 8:30pm, very dusky if not nearly dark, casting even more of ‘shadow’ on these and the other ‘witness’ observations.”

    Which is an excellent explanation for several of the inconsistencies in the statements. Such as the misjudged distances and even the lady who thought Pidel was black.

    “And the police report from the scene places Harvey’s blood spatter at around 8 feet from the front of the Kia.”

    I am not sure what you were trying to illustrate with that but, oh well. I agree somebody is “spitballing” but his identifier is bildung not the trooper.

      bildung in reply to Gremlin1974. | March 18, 2014 at 8:21 am

      I think the motion to dismiss does focus on trooper conduct of the investigation, as well as the withholding of information by the prosecution.

      I didn’t write it.

        Gremlin1974 in reply to bildung. | March 18, 2014 at 11:07 am

        Yes, the Motion to dismiss does imply that, however that isn’t what you said, you made direct accusations and now you want to say; “Well it was the motion to dismiss.”

        I’ll give you this, you may be a troll, but at least you are an entertaining troll.

    steveo1 in reply to bildung. | March 17, 2014 at 9:26 pm

    I think that distances are very difficult to eyeball. I’ve seen police reports where leos say 10 ft and when it’s measured with a tape or on Google Earth its more like 50 ft. State Police usually have sophisticated devices to measure distances at traffic scenes, this trooper should have just gone with what the witness said, because, basically the eyeball distance is worthless.

      tom swift in reply to steveo1. | March 18, 2014 at 3:47 am

      I know of a case of a very low-speed two-car collision, after which one car continued to roll (maybe 5mph, max) as the driver opened his door, rolled out onto the road, and rested comfortably (though unconsciously, I think – a drug case) while the car continued its leisurely roll. It finally came to rest against a tree 147 feet away from the recumbent driver. The official police measurement was that the driver was thrown 147 feet. Eyewitness statements that the driver wasn’t thrown anywhere couldn’t budge officialdom – a 147 foot throw it stayed.

      A mathematician or engineer would call that a “systematic error”, as opposed to a random or counting error.

      Measuring a distance with a tape which is missing a few feet off the end, measuring the distance to the wrong object, measuring a distance after an object has been moved, reading the wrong side of a tape measure, reading inches and feet correctly but recording them as decimal feet, screwing up the conversion from feet to meters, etc. are all annoyingly common systematic errors.

    “This shooting happened around 8:30pm, very dusky if not nearly dark”

    Sunset that night was 8:31pm. In the summer especially, it doesn’t get full-on dark for a fair while after the sun sets.

    Ragspierre in reply to bildung. | March 17, 2014 at 10:30 pm

    “Harvey’s blood spatter at around 8 feet from the front of the Kia.”

    1. you have it as “blood spatter” how? (Because a harness cop reports it thus. You have no flucking idea if it was “spatter” or not. That is something for an expert to determine.)

    2. you have “around 8 feet” because a cop (or two) theoretically measured it and recorded it correctly. (If these are mendacious, stupid, careless cops when you want them to be, why are they not all consistently thus? Hmmm…?)

    3. more parody.

    Still waiting for that interrogation of Pidel that “proves” he’s an “obvious liar”…


      tom swift in reply to Ragspierre. | March 17, 2014 at 10:51 pm

      The police sketch had a point labeled “blood spatter”.

      But it didn’t actually say that it was Harvey’s blood. Maybe there’s a lot of blood on the roads in Maryland.

      Seriously, the most blood I’ve seen on roads was in New Mexico. Maybe NM was short of highway funds for clearing dead animals off roads, so they stayed there until they were reduced to bloody pancakes. Anyway, it was very striking. “Land of Enchantment” indeed.

        For me was Montana and North Dakota. It was night. I was on my motorcycle. Turned on my high beams and saw HUNDREDS Of shiny eyes on both shoulders and the median of the highway.

        Scared the crap out of me.

        –Andrew, @LawSelfDefense

      SmokeVanThorn in reply to Ragspierre. | March 17, 2014 at 11:04 pm

      What information, from any witness, do you think is reliable enough for anyone to base an opinion on at this point?

        Ragspierre in reply to SmokeVanThorn. | March 17, 2014 at 11:09 pm

        Pretty much not none. But that would depend to some degree on which particular issue you were talking about.

        Based on the reported (stress that, btw) statements of Walker, I do have a low opinion of his candor.

        Still LOTS of stuff to learn, and LOTS of stuff to be challenged and tested.

          SmokeVanThorn in reply to Ragspierre. | March 18, 2014 at 6:35 pm

          Fair enough – as I said earlier, it appears that there are several commenters that are very selective in their skepticism.

        Gremlin1974 in reply to SmokeVanThorn. | March 17, 2014 at 11:38 pm

        Actually what I tend to look for instead of the inconsistencies which are easy to find, I look for the things in the statements that are the same. You already know that there will be variances in the statements, so instead of trying to impeach them individually on their differences I try to look for the corroboration.

          Ragspierre in reply to Gremlin1974. | March 18, 2014 at 10:08 am

          Unless the trooper who reported Walker’s account just made it up, Walker recited that he showed his badge and said something like “go away” to Harvey and Pidel.

          Nobody who witnessed the event remembers any such thing. (By accounts.)

          That’s the kind of thing that a jury might pick out at trial as indicating Walker is lying to them. There are others.


          Gremlin1974 in reply to Gremlin1974. | March 18, 2014 at 11:13 am

          I agree, I should have been more specific, I was actually thinking about “eyewitness” statements, not statements form participants or officials.

      bildung in reply to Ragspierre. | March 18, 2014 at 8:12 am

      I accept the report of a blood spatter for purposes of discussion based on an official incident report. That seems reliable enough for now.

      This is the same way we ‘know’ Joseph Walker shot and killed Joeseph Harvey–I didn’t see it and neither did you, nor have you or I done any DNA testing on the principles.

      We assume a killing took place because its been officially reported.

      Leading witnesses, etc seems to be a different issue from recording a distance. I would presume there are photos of the scene , perhaps even of the measurement itself, to validate the recorded distance.

      If not, then that kind of crime scene mismanagement creates confusion leading toward reasonable doubt, favoring Walker.

I do not understand how one gets from 20 – 30 feet down to 6 feet (IIRC, that’s the distance the trooper indicated). This makes no sense except that maybe LE actually measured the distance and didn’t make a guesstimate. It’s amazing how off eye witnesses can be.

Pidel called 911 the same time as Walker and would, presumably, have asked for medical help. Yes?

Nothing burgers, medium rare.

MouseTheLuckyDog | March 17, 2014 at 8:52 pm

I’m scared she’ll look me up and give me a ticket. LOL

The numbers, so far –

Pidel – 6 to 8 feet, 6 to 12 feet.
Police diagram – 7 ft 9 inches.
Walker – didn’t say directly, but implied less than 10 feet.
Mr. J – 25 to 30 feet.
Ms. I – 40 to 50 feet, “but hard to tell from that vantage point”

MouseTheLuckyDog | March 17, 2014 at 10:26 pm

Ok I gotta ask. How many arms did the man in the pickup truck have?

Lots of comments here about how the distance estimate came about. This is the process as I see it.

The witness volunteered ‘maybe almost the distance of this room…’

Later the trooper estimated the length of the room as ‘close to maybe 20 feet’.

The witness disagreed. He says the room is a ‘little bit more than 20 feet.’ Then he estimated the length of the room at more like 25 to 30 feet.

The trooper suggested 20-25 as the distance Harvey was from the van and the witness agreed. (I presume the witness thought an estimate of 20-25 was fairly close to being almost the distance of the room as he had estimated, give or take 2-3 feet of course.)

    tom swift in reply to Baker. | March 17, 2014 at 10:56 pm

    In witness J’s case, the transcript of his statement is “I would say it’s a little bit more than 20. One, two, three, four, five, six, seven eight, nine – this is, yeah, 25, 30. Yeah.” It seems that he’s pacing the distance while talking.

MouseTheLuckyDog | March 17, 2014 at 11:08 pm

so when does the prosecution file it’s reply to the motion?

Now when I was pulling up the post to look at the comments again, I actually took a moment to look at the still capture at the top. Now, I realize I am looking at a 2D photo with very little depth, but honestly it doesn’t look like that Honda is 160 feet in front of that van.

The rules of evidence will mean that, unless one of these witnesses is unavailable for trial (like dead), the reports will not be admissible. All of them, except anything actually said by Harvey, seem to be clearly hearsay and without an exception to the hearsay rules (I assume Maryland is pretty like Texas).

They CAN be used for refreshing memory and impeachment.

The prime reason for even taking them is obvious; like a deposition in civil law, they fix testimony to a given general narrative.

They also provide an evidentiary matrix for the early stages of prosecution.

But what you hear from witnesses at trial will not be the same as these statements. It will resemble it, but some areas will be a lot more fleshed out, and some will not be touched much at all.

Richard Aubrey | March 18, 2014 at 11:15 am

Who was in a position to hear Walker say, “Go away,”? Could be Pidel. If Pidel and Harvey were walking separated–which would be tactically useful and intimidating, a technique thugs would use–it’s possible that a passing vehicle masked anything Walker said to Harvey. Side by side, different.
IOW, it Walker says he said it, there are none to say him nay.
I used to work in an office twenty yards from an expressway. There was no point trying to talk to anybody in front of the building. It doesn’t take an expressway load of traffic, nor speed, to muffle something somebody said ten feet away.
It can’t be corroborated, but it can’t be disproven, either. Mrs. Walker, presuming the windows were shut, wouldn’t have heard it. Or if her window were open and Walker was on the left side of the vehicle,only possibly.
Again, all things the jurors would know or suspect.

There is a glaring disconnect between the physical evidence, as reported so far, and the witness testimony. Remember, that physical evidence exists, exactly as recorded.

Now, if the witness statements, placing Harvey 20-40 feet from the van when he was shot with the final two rounds, and that he dropped to the ground immediately, are accurate, then all of the distances recorded in the crime scene sketch are totally erroneous. This witness places responding officers on the scene with no evidence that the van was moved. And, officers on a crime scene are unlikely to allow vehicles to be moved. Also, these are state troopers. As such they are surely familiar with measuring a scene and reading a tape measure. So it is unlikely that that the person measuring the scene made such glaring mistakes as would be necessary to validate the witness testimony so far presented.

A few points concerning “blood spatter” in gunshot victims. In central torso hits, blood does not usually “spatter” from the entry wound, like it does in the movies. And, if any does, it is usually absorbed by clothing. Spattering, from these types of wounds, usually occurs from the exit wound, which is on the side of the body away from the firearm. And, due to velocity imparted to the blood, it will travel in an arc, landing on the ground a distance from a body standing vertically. Therefor, it is unlikely that “blood spatter” would be found at the point where a person was actually standing when he was shot. Now, the blood, in question, may not be spattering. But, regardless, if it can from the deceased, it could not have wound up where it did if he fell 20+ feet from the van.

This case is going to present an interesting contest between the recorded physical evidence and the witness testimony.

    Ragspierre in reply to Mac45. | March 18, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    “Remember, that physical evidence exists, exactly as recorded.”

    No. Not in the world of trial procedure. Remember yesterday’s little elaboration on this?

    The only way ANY evidence gets before a jury is via the testimony of a human being.

    And every essential thing they say CAN be a big, fat lie. Or a big, fat error, etc., etc.

    luckydog in reply to Mac45. | March 18, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    I might be concerned about witness inconsistencies, if some of the witness’s corroborated Walker’s story about checking his tires and some did not. Or if some of the witnesses – other than Walker – were trained police officers. It is the inconsistency in Walker’s stories – a trained police officer – that concerns me, and that inconsistency is probably where the primary focus should be.

Rags … you said: I assume Maryland is pretty like Texas

Nah, nothing is quite as purty as Texas.

    Baker in reply to Aridog. | March 18, 2014 at 12:33 pm

    I wanted to say something about the ‘pretty like Texas’ comment too but I couldn’t come up with something witty but not snarky sounding. Your reply hit the sweet spot. Well done.

    Ragspierre in reply to Aridog. | March 18, 2014 at 1:07 pm

    You guys…!!!

    Maryland is purdy in lots of place, actually. Especially in spring.

    Like Kulhifornia…pretty place to visit, but I would not live there on a bet. Texas is just fine. Purdy, too.

Richard Aubrey | March 18, 2014 at 12:30 pm

Rags. If “go away”, the utterance, is important, then it needs to be proven, contradicted, corroborated. That means concern about who, if anyone, could actually address it.
Now, in a DTR state, “go away” might or might not be relevant. But if either side wants to bring it up, it will need to be addressed.

Actually, if the evidence is recorded properly on the crime scene, then it exists, as recorded, in the real world. It is virtually impossible for an attorney to impeach physical evidence [the O.J. Simpson case being an exception], so defense attorneys always place more credence in witness testimony which can be tainted by a variety of things, including time. However, physical evidence has to be reconciled with witness testimony. If it can not be reconciled, then it has to be impeached by proving that the recording of the evidence was not done correctly, rather than accepting that the less reliable evidence of witness testimony is accurate.

In this case, the physical evidence, as represented in the crime scene sketch, actually helps the defense.

    Ragspierre in reply to Mac45. | March 18, 2014 at 7:18 pm

    “Actually, if the evidence is recorded properly on the crime scene, then it exists, as recorded, in the real world.”

    That whooshing sound….???

    It was not Flight 370. It was my point, flying over your head.

    The world of a trial court is NOT “the real world”.

    Say it with me…”The world of a trial court is NOT “‘the real world'”.

    A crime scene report, accident report, etc. is NOT coming into evidence without a human to sponsor it.

    As “real world” as numbers on paper may be to you, they are NOT real until their sponsor has laid a predicate for them via testimony, AND THEN every word/number/graphic on the paper can be all lies.

“A crime scene report, accident report, etc. is NOT coming into evidence without a human to sponsor it.”

This is a point of debate?

If there’s no human being to establish the necessary foundation for the physical evidence, the physical evidence effectively doesn’t exist for trial purposes.

–Andrew, @LawSelfDefense