Suspended License Virginia DMV Record Evidence Lawyers Norfolk County
Giles v. Commonwealth
Defendant challenged a judgment of the Circuit Court of the City of Norfolk (Virginia), which, after a bench trial, convicted him of driving on a suspended license in violation of Va. Code Ann. § 46.2-301. Defendant contended that the trial court erred by admitting into evidence his Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) driving record.
- Whether the trial court erred by admitting into evidence his Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) driving record?
Defendant was stopped by an officer for failure to stop at a stop sign. Defendant gave the officer his automobile registration, but not his operator’s license. The Commonwealth introduced into evidence a copy of defendant’s DMV driving record. Defendant objected on hearsay grounds to its admissibility to prove his prior convictions of driving on a suspended license. The court affirmed and held as follows: defendant’s DMV driving record was properly admitted, pursuant to Va. Code Ann. § 46.2-215 and the official documents exception to the hearsay rule, for the limited purpose of proving that defendant had notice of his suspension; official DMV records were admissible as an exception to the hearsay rule if the document related facts or events within the personal knowledge and observation of the recording official to which he could have testified should he have been called as a witness; and the statutory duties imposed on the clerk of a trial court by § 46.2-382(1) satisfied the personal knowledge requirement of the official documents exception to the hearsay rule. The court affirmed the judgment of conviction
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Article written by A Sris
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