World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Present sense impression

Article Id: WHEBN0002022740
Reproduction Date:

Title: Present sense impression  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Excited utterance, Hearsay in United States law, Hearsay, Impression, Melendez-Diaz v. Massachusetts
Collection: Hearsay
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Present sense impression

A present sense impression, in the law of evidence, is a statement made by a person (the declarant) that conveys his or her sense of the state of an event or the condition of something. The statement must be spontaneously made while the person was perceiving (i.e. contemporaneous with) the event or condition, or "immediately thereafter." The permissible time lapse between event and statement may range from seconds to minutes, but probably not hours. The subject matter and content of the statement are limited to descriptions or explanations of the event or condition, therefore opinions, inferences, or conclusions about the event or condition are not present sense impressions. An example of present sense impression is of a person saying, "it's cold" or "we're going really fast".

Under the Federal Rules of Evidence [FRE 803(1)], a statement of present sense impression is an exception to the prohibition on use of hearsay as evidence at a trial or hearing, and is therefore admissible to prove the truth of the statement itself (i.e. to prove that it was in fact cold at the time the person was speaking, or to prove that the person was indeed traveling very fast). The basis for this exception is the belief that the statement is likely reliable and true, as there is no time for reflection, distortion, or fabrication.

The witness testifying about the statement need not be the declarant who, with firsthand knowledge about the event and condition, would normally make a better witness. The witness must have personal knowledge of declarant's making of the statement, but need not have personal knowledge of the event or the content of the statement. For example, a policeman observed from a distance that a reporter was dictating into a voice-recorder while a shooting was going on, but could not hear what the reporter was dictating. The reporter is unavailable to testify. The policeman testifies that he saw the reporter make the dictation. Upon proper authentication, that portion of the audio-recording containing descriptions or explanations of the shooting is admissible as present sense impression.


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 


Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.