Case Caption: People of the Virgin Islands (Appellant/Plaintiff,) vs. Willis Todmann (Appellee/Defendant)Case Number: S.CT.Crim.No.: 2009-052Date: 02/19/2010Author: Hodge, Rhys S. Citation: Summary:

The Supreme Court affirmed the Superior Court's April 28, 2009 interlocutory order, which granted Appellee's motion to exclude the proposed testimony of the People's handwriting expert. Specifically, a majority of the Court concluded that the trial court did not abuse its discretion in excluding the two pieces of testimony, despite the fact that the trial court erroneously applied the Federal Rules of Evidence ("FRE") rather than the statutorily-enacted Uniform Rules of Evidence ("URE"). Notably, the Court held that FRE 702's assist the trier of fact requirement, which is not embodied in 5 V.I.C. § 911(2)'s expert witness rule, is equivalent to 5 V.I.C. § 777(f)'s general relevancy requirement.

Attachment: Open Document or Opinion