Document Type

Davis v. State of Ohio, Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Case No. CV96-312322


February 28, 2000

Box Number


Item Number



motion in limine, Michael N. Sobel, expert testimony, Richard Eberling, wrist scar, Ohio R. Evid. 104, Ohio R. Evid. 702, bite mark, fingernail, plaintiff's filing


This memorandum was submitted in support of the State’s motion to limit the testimony of Michael N. Sobel. The State expected Dr. Sobel to testify about the scar on Richard Eberling’s wrist. The State argued that Dr. Sobel, a forensic odontology expert, was not qualified to make conclusions about weapon/wounds after “exclud[ing] the existence of a bite mark” under Rule 702 of the Ohio Rules of Evidence. According to the State, an expert cannot be permitted to testify as an expert beyond his scope of expertise pursuant to Rule 104 of the Ohio Rules of Evidence. In his deposition, Dr. Sobel testified that a mark on Richard Eberling’s forearm was caused by Marilyn Sheppard’s fingernail. The State argued that this testimony is beyond the scope of his expertise because Dr. Sobel attended dental school, and is not qualified to give opinion testimony of skin marks and wounds.