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Opinion Digests

Criminal – Evidence – Fingernail Comparison – Expert Testimony (access required)

Where the prosecution contended that a portion of defendant’s fingernail came off in the cash register when the store owner attempted to close the cash register door on defendant’s hand, and the commonwealth’s forensic expert found that fingernail portion matched ...

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Search & Seizure – Consensual Encounter – Hands In Pockets (access required)

Where the uniformed police officer initially encountered defendant standing on the street about midnight with his hands in the pockets of his hooded sweatshirt, and when defendant complied with the officer’s request to remove his hands from his pockets, the ...

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Domestic Relations – Paternity – Population Distributions (access required)

Although appellant contends the trial court in this paternity proceeding erred in admitting as evidence indexes based upon population distributions without proof that the information was scientifically reliable, his argument addresses the weight of the expert testimony on his likely ...

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Negligence – Collateral Source Rule – Disability & Retirement Pay (access required)

In this personal injury case, the collateral source rule bars the county as an underinsurance provider from presenting evidence of its payments to plaintiff of service-connected disability retirement benefits and workers’ compensation benefits. The collateral source rule provides that benefits ...

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Criminal – Exculpatory Evidence – Prosecution Witness's Deal (access required)

Although defendant contends he was not informed prior to trial of the full extent of the commonwealth’s agreement to drop several charges against the chief prosecution witness and to allow her to plead guilty to one charge, the court concludes ...

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Negligence – Physician Deposition – Plaintiff's Medical Records (access required)

Where defendant wishes to provide plaintiff’s treating physician with plaintiff’s later medical records in advance of a trial deposition for purposes of cross-examination, defendant may do so despite plaintiff’s objection that defendant is attempting to turn her own witness against ...

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Civil Practice – Nonsuit – Service Of Process – Third Nonsuit (access required)

Where plaintiff filed a second personal injury case after nonsuiting her first action, but process was never served during the three-and-one-half years the second suit was pending on the docket, and the second action was nonsuited only after the trial ...

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Contract – Agreement To Agree – Vagueness – UCC (access required)

Where the parties’ 1988 “asset sale and loan agreement” provided that defendant seller would pay plaintiff buyer a “variable fee” for the first five years of the agreement, and that this fee would be “an amount to be mutually agreed ...

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