State v. Reavis, 207 N.C. App. 218 (Sept. 21, 2010)

The defendant opened the door to the State’s cross-examination of a defense expert regarding prior offenses. On direct examination, the defendant’s psychiatric expert reviewed the defendant’s history of mental illness, including mention of his time in prison in 1996 for robbery. Defense counsel presented evidence as to defendant’s time in prison, the year of the crime, the type of crime, defendant’s time on probation, and a probation violation which returned him to prison. On cross-examination, the State questioned the expert about the defendant’s time in prison, the defendant’s previous “pleas which ultimately sent [defendant] to prison[,]” and the exact dates and times of the incidents, one of which led to the defendant’s incarceration. The defendant raised no objection until the State presented police reports from the defendant’s prior robbery conviction. Because the expert had testified about the robbery, the State could inquire into his knowledge of the events which led to the conviction.