Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2001/06/23

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Subject: Re: [Leica] Home depot and the rest
From: "Bryan Caldwell" <>
Date: Sat, 23 Jun 2001 11:12:09 -0700
References: <>


For a cop to say "I saw him speeding" is not hearsay.

I'm not aware of any U.S. jurisdiction that limits the hearsay rule to
criminal proceedings. There are many exceptions to the hearsay rule, but the
rules of evidence apply to both criminal and civil proceedings.

Are you sure that speeding tickets in Masachusetts are really "Civil"? I
would be interested to learn more about this. A civil proceeding does not
result in a finding of "guilt." It may be that, as in most U.S.
jurisdictions, they are infractions. Meaning that they can only be punished
by a fine and that the accused is not entitled to appointed counsel or a
jury trial. In court trials on infractions, judges are often very relaxed
about the rules of evidence and often allow hearsay in that they probably
shouldn't, but that's another story.

If trespassing were not criminal, how would you propose to deal with someone
who decided to pitch their tent in your front yard?


- ----- Original Message -----
From: "Austin Franklin" <>
To: <>
Sent: Saturday, June 23, 2001 10:38 AM
Subject: RE: [Leica] Home depot and the rest

> > Austin,
> >
> > Municipal Code violations are not prosecuted by the District Attorney's
> > office, so they are still free to fight "real crime." They are, instead,
> > prosecuted by the City Attorney's office.
> >
> > Would you prefer that trespassing not be criminal?
> >
> > Bryan
> Sure.  In MA, speeding tickets used to be criminal.  They are now civil.
> understanding of the reason for the change was that hearsay could not be
> used in criminal cases as evidence, but in civil it could.  This would
> the cop to basically say "I saw him speeding" and the judge could then say
> "guilty", and no further proof was required.
> The state garnered a lot more income, and the trials moved much more
> expeditiously.  A real win/win for the state.

Replies: Reply from Jim Brick <> ([Leica] RE: Home depot and the rest)
In reply to: Message from "Austin Franklin" <> (RE: [Leica] Home depot and the rest)