It is worth noting that situations similar to those described in this birth injury case could just as easily occur at any of the healthcare facilities in the area, such as Kaiser Permanente, UC Davis Medical Center, Mercy, Methodist, or Sutter.
(Please also note: the names and locations of all parties have been changed to protect the confidentiality of the participants in this medical malpractice lawsuit and its proceedings.)
SYMPATHY PLEAS ARE IMPROPER AND VIOLATE THE LAW
Whether or not following this incident defendant Green was remorseful, depressed, or in any other way was upset over this incident and its consequences is irrelevant to any issue in this case, and any evidence of it or argument would be unduly prejudicial and involve an undue amount of time to rebut. Any plea of sympathy for Defendant Green is improper because it asks the jury to violate the law and their oath to judge the case based on the evidence presented to them and without regard to sympathy for any party. While such a plea can be cleverly worded and disguised in its presentation, it is still inadmissible and improper and should not be allowed by this Court.
For more information you are welcome to contact Sacramento personal injury lawyer, Moseley Collins.
EVIDENCE CODE § 352 MANDATES EXCLUSION OF SYMPATHY PLEAS. AS IT WOULD RESULT IN PREJUDICE TO PLAINTIFF. CONFUSION OF THE ISSUES. AND WOULD MISLEAD THE JURY SUCH THAT ITS PREJUDICIAL EFFECT OUTWEIGHS ITS PROBATIVE VALUE
This Court has the discretion to exclude prejudicial evidence. California Evidence Code § 352 provides that:
The court, in its discretion, may exclude evidence if its probative value is substantially outweighed by the probability that its admission will (a) necessitate undue consumption of time, or (b) create substantial danger of undue prejudice, confusion of the issues, or of misleading the jury.
Sympathy pleas designed to suggest to the trier of fact that Defendant Green grieved following this incident or that he is otherwise remorseful is completely irrelevant to the issues that will be presented at trial. The admission of such evidence or argument would only lead to unfounded speculation and conjecture by the jury. Any such speculation would only serve to confuse the issues, unduly prejudice the jury against and ultimately mislead the jury. These real and substantial threats clearly outweigh any purported probative value of such evidence that may be suggested by the defense.
For all the above reasons, Plaintiffs respectfully urge this Court to preclude counsel and all witnesses from presenting such evidence at the time of trial.
The Court is further requested to order the Defendant’s counsel to so inform all of its witnesses to not make any such reference to or comment of this nature and to otherwise strictly follow these instructions.