I have a friend accused of committing a crime damage to property and theft. After bind over, he was allowed to look at affidavits, which have the wrong name of alleged victim, a time stated last seen and left propery 2 hours after the person that was arrested for the crime, in addition to no signature of the officer who took the statement, in additon to the officer that took the statement has not come to court or been seen at all. Yet an officer not on the witness list was allowed to read the affidavit, taken by another officer, whom claims took the affidavit form the complainants. Is any of this legal at District Court for pre-exams, and how does this affect the circuit court proceedings. Is this his lawyers fault this went this far? Now of course no one can find transcripts!
At a preliminary examination, the rules of evidence apply which limits the People from using hearsay evidence absent an exception. As a practical matter, any testimony given under oath can impeach a witness at trial if the testimony differs or if other evidence (e.g. a sworn affidavit), contradicts the trial testimony. District Court preliminary examinations, though, seek only to determine whether probable cause exists to believe the defendant committed a felony. Only in the Circuit Court can it be decided whether the defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. The District Court proceeding was, by law, recorded in some fashion and a transcript can --in this case, should --be ordered from the court clerk,
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