Columbus, IN asked in Criminal Law and Federal Crimes for Indiana

Q: Is it possible for a recording to be suppressed from evidence it has been edited by law-enforcement?

If an expert would verify that a criminal investigation recording has been edited by law-enforcement can it be suppressed or is that an issue that has to wait to go to trial? Thank you for your time.

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1 Lawyer Answer
James A Hanson
James A Hanson
Answered
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • Fort Wayne, IN
  • Licensed in Indiana

A: Great question.

If there is credible evidence that the recording has been manipulated, your attorney should file both a motion to suppress and a motion in limine.

The motion to suppress would argue that the evidence is inadmissible on several different grounds including fraud upon the court.

The motion in limine is a fall-back position if the Court is not inclined to exclude the recording entirely. The motion in limine would request a ruling before trial on the conditions and requirements of the admissibility of the recording. My personal preference would be that the entire original recording be admitted or nothing at all.

Of course, if your attorney was only given the edited recording in discovery, your attorney should also file a motion to compel the discovery of the unedited recording in its entirety. This is the first step so that your attorney will be better informed to draft and file the other two motions mentioned above.

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