The Center for Advocacy & Dispute Resolution

Problem Stipulation & Clarification

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1. There is no way to introduce the phone records, because there is no witness who can authenticate them.
2. There is no way to introduce the receipt when the defendant bought gas and a bottle of water.
3. In the 911 call exhibit, the caller indicates that the argument is between a male and a female. How do we address the gender issue?
4. The hospital records indicate that Morgan Madison was admitted to the hospital on September 25th. Is there any further clarification on the specific time of day, on the 25th, that Morgan got to the hospital?
5. Regarding the clarification for the gas station receipt: must the defendant admit only that the signature on the receipt is his? Or, is the document stipulated admissible in its entirety and the defense precluded from moving to exclude certain information on the document, such as the date and time stamp?
6. Regarding the picture of the partially burned gas can, is there any further clarification as to the volume or size of the gas can?
7. What is the distance from Alex Ferguson’s house to the garage that was burned down?
8. Can we assume that the stipulated testimony of Dr. R Quincy and the stipulated testimony of Susan Fischer cure any confrontation clause issue with regards to the admissibility of autopsy report and forensic report?
9. Will a written transcript be provided for the 911 call?

10. We understand that (1) the gas station receipt is not necessarily stipulated admissible, and (2) that Taylor must admit that that is his signature on the receipt. Our question is simply whether Taylor is still free to state that, while the signature is admittedly his, the date and/or time stamp is not accurate?

In other words, without a custodian to lay a business record foundation for the receipt, Taylor could admit that he signed the receipt, but could state something to the effect of "I signed the receipt, but the machine must not have been working correctly, because the date and/or time is wrong." Would that testimony from Taylor be acceptable?

11. For electronic evidence - may co-counsel assist the person doing direct or cross or must the advocate conducting the exam control computer or other devices for display?

12. Is electronic display limited to exhibits in the file or may an advocate use the computer and screen like a white board and write words or phrases used in open or close for the jury?

13. There is a rule about communication during the rounds, and to be sure, advocates may not confer with witnesses on their team during a break or defense with defendant at defense table?

14. Can we use case law for evidentiary issues?

15. Are the photos self-authenticating/admissible without objection; if not, who took them and when?

16. Do the witnesses adopt statements contained in reports that they do not sign?

17. Is there already a foundation for the 911 call recording? If not, how can we establish one?

18. We understand the phone records are stipulated to, but is permissible under the rules to object that they are incomplete? According to the police reports, Cathy Franklin tried calling Sean Franklin multiple times, but none of those calls appear on the phone records and it appears to at least be a fair inference that not all the phone calls are recorded in the call detail records. If they're admissible without foundation and there are no witnesses to bring in Cathy Franklin's calls, then the defense is unable to point out that inconsistency in the records.

19. Admissibility of Stipulated Testimony re: Susan Fishcer/Forensics (pgs. 56-61) and Dr. Quincy/Medical Examination (pgs. 62-64). What is the effect of the “stipulation” regarding Susan Fischer and Dr. Quincy’s proposed testimony? Is the testimony admitted as stipulated without further objection? Or can the advocates object to particular parts of the testimony? The reason for the concern is that both stipulations say that the parties stipulate that the person would testify in a particular manner, but it did not stipulate that the testimony is admissible without further foundation or argument.

20. Admissibility of Forensic Exam Report (pgs. 32-34) and Autopsy Report (pg. 30-31). Are these admissible without any further foundation? Are they subject to any further objections or redactions?

21. Regarding FAQ #2, #5, and #10, clarification questions on the gas station receipt: We understand that Taylor Billings may testify to reasonable inferences from the facts, however, in an effort to be certain that we adhere to the rules of the tournament and do not run into any invention of fact issues, we request a clarification on what Taylor Billings can and cannot say, and what argument can be made on summation. Can Taylor Billings say that the time stamp on the receipt must be wrong, because he was in fact at the gas station at 2PM? Can the argument be made on summation that the machine may not have been working properly, and that resulted in the incorrect time stamp.

22. It has been stated in the FAQs that witnesses must admit to statements signed by them; however, how do we handle statements made by witnesses in the police report when we will be unable to call any police officers to the stand?

23. In regards to the receipt, will the state be allowed to introduce it through the defense’s case. Otherwise how else can the state admit it to evidence?

24. We do not want to go out of the record and want to see if it is a reasonable inference if Jesse can identify the rug in evidence as the black and white area rug?

25. Did Morgan bond out of jail?

26. Can we read in certain stipulations during each side’s case in chief or only our own?

27. To clarify a clarification: Does the Defendant need to admit to anything on the receipt other than his signature?

28. Can line numbers be added to the witnesses testimonies, to facilitate the process of directing the witness to the corresponding part of their testimony during the process of impeachment?

29. About the photo of the green/gray container found in Marshall Woods: will we be provided with further information about it? Like, who was it taken by? When was it taken?

Apparently the lack of gender specificity of the witnesses in this year’s problem is causing grave concern to a number of teams. Because of this, the Competition is making the following – and final — gender clarifications:

While we understand student roles may have been assigned based on an unknown gender to this point, the apparent confusion of these gender roles requires us to take this step. Therefore, no matter the gender of your team member playing the role of either Billings or Madison, the witness is to play the role as a male.

The Question & Answer Period closes on Friday, February 27, 2015, at 5 p.m. CST.