Nevada Supreme Court Explains Admissibility Standards for IM / Text Messages

The criminal case of Kevin Rodriguez v. State of Nevada is one of three recent cases nationwide which discusses the admissibility of text messages in trial.

In Rodriguez, a victim was attacked, robbed, and her cell phone was taken.  Thereafter, twelve text messages were sent from the victim’s phone.  The case was brought against two defendants who were later apprehended in possession of the phone (which also had a picture of them in the phone which was taken after the assault).

Some quotes from the opinion:

* “Text messages offer new analytical challenges when courts consider admissibility.  However, those challenges do not require a deviation from basic evidentiary rules…”

* A person cannot be identified as the author of a text message solely on the evidence that the text came from that person’s phone.  Some additional evidence is required to authenticate.

* Circumstantial evidence corroborating the sender’s identity may include the context or content of the messages…

* Proponent of the evidence must explain the purpose for which the text message is being offered and provide sufficient direct or circumstantial corroborating evidence of authorship in order to authenticate…

* Once admitted, opponent may rebut authentication and it is for the jury to decide…

law & order
Trump v. Vance: Initial Breakdown of the November 2, 2019 Second Circuit Opinion re: Production of Tax Returns

The Second Circuit issued its opinion this morning in Donald J. Trump v. Cyrus Vance, Jr. in his capacity as District Attorney of the County of New York and Mazars USA, LLP. You can find the 34-page opinion here. The following is an initial, rough outline of the court’s opinion. …

4th Amendment
When Can You Withdraw Consent for a DUI Blood Draw in Florida? (Florida v. Jennifer Ivie)

A Florida driver was involved in an accident, taken to the hospital, and interviewed by police who were conducting a DUI investigation. The officer spoke with the driver, advised her of her Miranda rights, conducted at least one visual test, and otherwise detected signs of intoxication. The officer asked the …

1st Amendment
“Valid Grounds for Employment Action” Deemed Not Enough for Stalking Injunction under F.S. 784.048 (Klenk v. Ransom)

Florida’s First District Court of Appeal held today that a respondent’s behavior may be enough for an “employment action” (presumably, for termination due to sexual harassment) but, in this case, was not enough for the “exacting standard” for an injunction against stalking under Florida Statute 748.048. The case is Joseph …