When dealing with an offer of Proof, it is madeoutside the presence of the jury
Motions in Limine
are pretrial rulings on the admissibility of evidence
If the error is not prejudicial to the outcome, then the harmless error rule appliesError is harmless if the jury would have reached the same verdict even if the error did notoccur
If no objection is made, the evidence will be admitted even if objectionable.
The only time a reversal will result from the admission of evidence despite an objection not being raised is when: there is “plain error.” A serious mistake that affects the outcome of the case.
D. Preliminary Facts (Rule 104(a)
(OL I.D) Preliminary Questions of Admissibility shall be determined by the court.1. Preliminary facts: (CAP Rule)1. Competency – Witness QualificationsIs the lay witness qualified? Does he have proper knowledge? Is he helpful?Does the expert witness have special expertise that makes him helpful?Did the witness swear under oath?2. AdmissibilityJudge determines application of technical evidentiary rules such as whether or not ahearsay exception applies3. PrivilegeWhether or not a privilege existsEXAMPLE:Dying Declaration
The burden on the judge when determining admissibility of evidence:
Hearings on admissibility held outside the presence of the jury
Standard used: PotE (preponderance of the evidence)
Decisions are final and binding on the jury
A judge is not bound by the rules of evidence when determining preliminary facts exceptwith regard to privilege2. Conditional relevancy: FRE 104(b)Where admissibility of one item of evidence is conditioned on the relevancy of another itemof evidence, once that condition is met, the judge
admit the evidence
E. Limited Admissibility (Rule 105)
(OL I.E)1. If evidence is admitted as to one party or for one purpose, but is inadmissible as to another partyor for another purpose, the court, upon request,
restrict the evidence to its proper scope andinstruct the jury accordingly.