Vol. 54_2013 E. Supp.

Witness History as Juries Become History: How the Eleventh Circuit Allowed the Opinions of Lay Witnesses to Overtake the Duty of the Jury in United States v. Jayyousi

Abstract:  On September 19, 2011, in United States v. Jayyousi, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit held that an FBI agent’s testimony regarding his post-hoc review of investigation materials was admissible as lay opinion testimony under Rule 701 of the Federal Rules of Evidence. In so holding, the Eleventh Circuit joined a minority of courts in adopting the most liberal interpretation of the Rule 701 perception and helpfulness requirements. This Comment argues that the Eleventh Circuit erred in adopting the most liberal interpretation of Rule 701 and that only by adopting the strictest interpretation can the courts continue to show due reverence for our jurors.

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