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


April 5, 2000

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expert testimony, Terry Laber, Ohio R. Evid. 702(c), blood spatter, blood stains, motion in limine, defendant's filings


The State contends that admitting Plaintiff’s expert testimony would violate of the rules of evidence and the court’s case management order, Local Rule 21.1. Terry Laber performed experiments with blood spatter and stains on a wrist watch and was to testify that the stains on Dr. Sheppard’s watch were not consistent with impact spatter. The State argued that this testimony would be a violation of 702(c) of the Rules of Evidence because it was going to be used to bolster the Plaintiff’s case in chief and was not rebuttal testimony. The State argued that it did not introduce any new evidence that would permit Laber’s testimony about the blood spatter on the watch. The State also argued that Laber’s testimony should not be considered as expert testimony because it was novel; had no controls; had no peer review, and had no documentation. The State’s second reason for excluding the testimony was that it violated Local Rule 21.1. The court’s case management order indicated that all supplemental reports were due by January 31, 2000, however Plaintiff’s expert witness report was dated February 14, 2000 and was served upon defendant on February 17. The state argues that Local Rule 21.1's “all supplemental reports” includes expert reports used for rebuttal.