Wise v. Southern Tier Express, Inc.

Filing 114

ORDER Granting Plaintiff's 79 Motion in Limine No.1 (Prior Conviction). Signed by Judge Andrew P. Gordon on 7/10/2017. (Copies have been distributed pursuant to the NEF - SLD)

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1 UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT 2 DISTRICT OF NEVADA 3 *** 4 RODERICK WISE, an individual, 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 Plaintiff, v. SOUTHERN TIER EXPRESS, INC., a New York corporation; DOES I through X; and ROE CORPORATIONS I through X, inclusive, Case No. 2:15-cv-01219-APG-PAL ORDER GRANTING MOTION IN LIMINE NO. 1 (PRIOR CONVICTION) (ECF No. 79) Defendants. Plaintiff Roderick Wise has moved to exclude evidence of his “prior felony conviction, 12 criminal record, and any other wrongful act.” ECF No. 79. The motion refers only to a 2012 13 felony conviction for assault and related papers regarding the underlying 2010 incident. 14 Federal Rule of Evidence 609(a) generally allows the admission of such evidence in this 15 situation, unless it would be barred by Rule 403. Thus, I must balance the probative value of the 16 impeaching conviction against the danger of unfair prejudice. Evidence of a felony conviction 17 would likely taint the jury against Wise; thus, there is significant risk of unfair prejudice. There is 18 little probative value to the conviction. Wise’s credibility will be important, as he likely will 19 testify about how his injury occurred and the resulting effects on his life. However, his 20 conviction for assaulting his roommate has little relation to veracity. Nor is it similar to the issues 21 presented in this case. The fact that Wise (in the defendant’s opinion) “presented a rather bizarre 22 story” at his criminal trial (ECF No. 97 at 4-5) does not render his conviction for assault probative 23 of his credibility. Therefore, Wise’s motion in limine (ECF No. 79) is GRANTED. However, 24 should Wise offer evidence at trial that renders his conviction more probative, the defendant may 25 ask me to reconsider this decision outside the presence of the jury. 26 27 28 DATED this 10th day of July, 2017. ANDREW P. GORDON UNITED STATES DISTRICT JUDGE

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