Jeffersonville, IN asked in Criminal Law for Minnesota

Q: What is required in a foundation to authenticate video evidence at trial?

Defendant is claimed to be on video breaking into storage units. The video evidence was collected and burnt onto a flashdrive by 2 of the facilities employees. Employee A saw the video for the first time and is the one who reported it to police, Employee B. Physically collected and burned the video onto a flash drive and is who handed it to police. Prosecution only has employee A. At trial to testify about the video. Can the defense object to the prosecution submitting the video at trial for authenticity due to employee B. Not being available for questioning? What would happen if they did?

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2 Lawyer Answers

A: The typical foundation question for a video is: does this video recording “fairly and accurately depict” the area being recorded on __ date.

The sponsoring witness must be someone familiar with the area being recorded on __ date.

Lucas Wynne
Lucas Wynne
  • Criminal Law Lawyer
  • St. Louis Park, MN
  • Licensed in Minnesota

A: I'd be careful using Justia to try to represent yourself. But if I had to give an answer, I'd usually default to whether the video depicts what it claims to depict and whether probative value outweighs prejudice.

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