Evidence: Review and Summary: Impeachment

Review: Methods of Impeachment M

Impeachment Method

Means of Proof

Prior Inconsistent Statement
  • Cross-examination
  • Extrinsic evidence (if not a collateral matter)
Witness must be given opportunity to explain or deny the inconsistent statement (Exception for hearsay declarants)
Bias, Interest or Motive to misrepresent
  • Cross-examination
  • Extrinsic evidence
Witness must be asked on cross-examination about facts showing bias or interest before extrinsic evidence is allowed. If those facts are admitted on cross examination, admissibility of extrinsic evidence is within court’s discretion.
Sensory Deficiencies
  • Cross-examination
  • Extrinsic Evidence
None required
Reputation or opinion
  • Calling other witnesses
None required
Criminal Convictions
  • Cross-examination
  • Record of judgment
None required
Bad Acts
  • Cross-examination only
None required
  • Cross-examination
If the contradiction goes to an issue that is significant to the case, extrinsic evidence is allowed. If the contradiction goes to a collateral matter, proof is limited to intrinsic evidence.