Hey, folks. Look at me: I'm studying! This ties in with my evidence class and "character evidence."

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post TSbyBS with spoilers

Character Evidence

"Mr. Ellison, how long have you known Detective Sandburg?"

"I've known Sandburg about 4 and a half years."

"Would you say that he has a reputation for truthfulness or for dishonesty?"

"His word is good. He didn't lie about the defendant --"

"Detective, please just answer the question."

"Yes, Sandburg is an honest man."

"How well do you know him?"

"Very well. He's been my partner and roommate for about 4 years."

"You know him so well -- Are you aware that a few months ago he confessed to submitting a fraud --"

The prosecutor shot out of her seat. "Objection your honor! Specific Acts."

The defense attorney turned to the judge. "Your honor, this goes to test the knowledge of Detective Ellison regarding the defendant. How well he knows him and his credibility as a witness in that regard."


"Thank you your honor." The defense attorney turned back to Ellison.

"So, Mr. Ellison, are you aware of the fraud?"

Jim sat rigid in his seat, his eyes locking with Blair's. His partner was seated in the second row next to Simon and Joel. Blair's eyes were wide and tinged with red, but he nodded permission.

*Damn.* Jim swallowed. "Yes, I'm aware of that."

"Is it your opinion that a man who commits such fraud would develop a reputation for honesty?"

"Not generally, no."

"Does Mr. Sandburg have a reputation for honesty generally in his community?"

"Which community?"

"His friends, co-workers, fellow students and professors at the university."

"I can't speak for the university, but he has a good reputation with his friends and co-workers at the Cascade PD."

"For being a fraud?"

"Objection. Badgering --"


The defense attorney nodded. "Withdrawn. Mr. Ellison, is it widely known that Sandburg committed fraud?"

"He confessed to the press. Yes, it's widely known."

"Has that given him a reputation for truthfulness generally?"

Jim swallowed, his gut twisting. "No." He kept his gaze on the defense attorney, unable to look Blair in the eye.

"Would you say that he is reputed to be a liar and a cheat?"

His jaw muscle pulsed. "Yes."

"No further questions."


"Chancellor Edwards, do you know Mr. Sandburg?"

"Yes, very well."

"How long have you known him?"

"About fourteen years."

"In what capacity?"

"As an administrator at Rainier university where he received his undergraduate and graduate degree, and then commenced work on his doctorate."

"What kind of a reputation would you say Mr. Sandburg has achieved with his former peers at the University?"

"He falsified his thesis. Made up data. Most people think of him as a fraud. A liar. Not to be trusted."

"Is it your opinion that Mr. Sandburg is a dishonest individual?"

"Yes. Definitely."

"Thank you. No further questions."

~~~~ the end ~~~~

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hey, I just HAD to review my Evidence. No, this is not hearsay. This is one of those cases where character evidence IS allowed as to reputation or opinion but not specific acts unless the specific acts are introduced for a purpose OTHER than making the person look bad. For instance, introducing specific acts to test the knowledge of the person testifying about Blair's credibility. If Jim didn't know about the fraud, then he probably doesn't know Blair all that well and the jury won't put much weight on his knowledge of Blair's reputation. Well, hope I didn't mess anything up - did this w/out looking at my notes (I'm a brave gal!)

Remember the OJ SIMPSON trial and the scrutiny of the cop's character? So there. *grin* I've made my point about Blair, TSbyBS, testifying in court, da da da... :-)