Preservation and Admissibility v. Weight

In State v. Tapp, the Supreme Court of South Carolina recently held that while the court’s rules require that objections to admissibility of evidence be specific, the rules do not require an objection to anticipate rulings of the court which will be made in the future. This is in response to the decision in State v. White, which was rendered in 2009, while the appeal in Tapp was still pending.

The issue clarified in White was whether nonscientific expert testimony was subject to a reliability determination made by the judge, or whether the reliability of such testimony was a question of fact for the jury to decide. The court in White held that “the foundational reliability of nonscientific testimony must be tested prior to the qualification of an expert.”

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