Smith's Criminal Case Compendium

Smith's Criminal Case Compendium

About

This compendium includes significant criminal cases by the U.S. Supreme Court & N.C. appellate courts, Nov. 2008 – Present. Selected 4th Circuit cases also are included.

Jessica Smith prepared case summaries Nov. 2008-June 4, 2019; later summaries are prepared by other School staff.

Instructions

Navigate using the table of contents to the left or by using the search box below. Use quotations for an exact phrase search. A search for multiple terms without quotations functions as an “or” search. Not sure where to start? The 5 minute video tutorial offers a guided tour of main features – Launch Tutorial (opens in new tab).

E.g., 09/22/2021
E.g., 09/22/2021

In this homicide case, the trial court did not err by allowing the State to question the defendant’s expert witness on automatism regarding the amount of fees he received for testifying in other, unrelated criminal cases. The challenged evidence was relevant to “test partiality towards the party by whom the expert was called.” It explained: “From the large sums of money that [the defendant]’s expert earned by testifying solely on behalf of criminal defendants, a reasonable jury could infer that the expert had an incentive to render opinions favorable to the criminal defendants who employ him.”

The trial court erred by preventing the defendant from making any inquiry into the compensation paid to the State’s expert witness. “The source and amount of a fee paid to an expert witness is a permissible topic for cross-examination, as it allows the opposing party to probe the witnesses’ partiality, if any, towards the party by whom the expert was called.” However, the defendant failed to show “harmful prejudice.”

Show Table of Contents