Can you present evidence during an opening statement? - Criminal Law Questions and Answers- LawQA.com

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Can you present evidence during an opening statement?

Can you present evidence at an opening statement. For example, a 911 call of someone?

Answer By Jared Austin
Austin Legal Services, PLC
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The purpose of opening statements is to give a preview of the case and what you think the evidence will or will not show and what evidence you think will or will not be admitted. It is not a proper time to present evidence and making arguments is forbidden. You could ask the judge permission to present a piece of evidence that you believe will definitely be admitted later in the trial I supposed, but this is risky being that if it is never admitted, you look like a liar and a mistrial is almost guaranteed. You would be limited in what you could do with it anyway because you could not make any legal arguments regarding it. Simply strict to offering a preview of your case during openings.

Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 8/24/2011

Answer By Paul Wallin
Wallin & Klarich: A Law Corporation
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During opening statement no evidence is presented. Your lawyer can advise the jury of what he believes the evidence will show but opening statement is not the time to present the evidence. The evidence is presented only from the witness stand during the trial.

Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/15/2011

Answer By Andrew Subin
Law Office of Andrew Subin
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Your opening statement describes what the evidence is going to show. You probably would not be able to play a 911 for the jury until it was admitted at evidence during trial (in other words, after opening statement).

Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 8/15/2011

Law Office of Richard Williams
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Opening statements are where you advise the jury of what you expect the eveidence to be in the case no evidence is presented and no recording should be played.

Answer Applies to: Alabama
Replied: 8/15/2011

Answer By Roy L. Reeves
Reeves Law Firm, P.C.
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No, not during opening argument. Opening argument is supposed to be a summation, it is not an opportunity to present evidence and in fact, there is no witness, so how would you even expect to prove up the recording without a sponsor.

Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 8/14/2011

Law Office of Sara Sencer McArdle
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You can discuss the evidence but cannot enter the evidence into the record until a witness takes the stand.

Answer Applies to: New Jersey
Replied: 8/14/2011

Answer By John Carney
Law Offices of John Carney
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An opening statement advises the jury or judge as to what you intend to produce at trial and what your theory of defense is. You cannot introduce evidence in an Opening Statement.

Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 8/13/2011

Law Office of Roianne H. Conner
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No, opening statement is to present what you expect the evidence to show. Not to present evidence.

Answer Applies to: Alabama
Replied: 8/13/2011

Law Office of Peter F. Goldscheider
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No although you can show exhibits that have been cleared for admission into evidence at trial.

Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/13/2011

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