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Florida Appellate Court Affirms Trial Court Circuit Court Ruling Admission Of Autopsy Pictures Not UBy Expert Author: Garth Harbuck
In the case of Montes-Valeton vs. State of Florida, the Second District Court of Appeal affirmed the trial court's conviction in addition to sentence of defendant for the crime of dui causing serious bodily injury. The defendant appealed the court's sentence challenging 1) the admission of the results of a blood alcohol test conducted on blood samples taken from the driver at the scene of a single-vehicle accident that caused the death of the passenger within the motor vehicle being driven by the defendant, & 2) the admission of autopsy pictures of the victim into evidence. The appellate court held that, on the grounds that the defendant had not properly objected as to the admission of the blood analysis at the time of the trial, the question was not preserved for appellate review. Relating to the admission of the autopsy pictures, the court held that, while the admission may have been incorrect, since the medical examiner could've testified to every thing shown in the pictures, as a consequence limiting the unfair prejudice, the jury's result of the lesser included offense of driving under the influence resulting in serious bodily injuries, & not DUI manslaughter (even though a fatality occurred) indicates, beyond a reasonable doubt, the fact that the admission of the autopsy photographs was indeed harmless.
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