Monday, July 23, 2012

Monday (7/16): Pre-Trial Motions

Although we were not present, we learned that the judgewould not allow Galo’s previous driving record as evidence. Under a certainsection of the California Criminal Code (Rules of Evidence Section 1101 A &B), this type of evidence would be considered prejudicial because it wouldunfairly weigh upon the defendant. While this makes sense in some cases, itclearly makes no sense in this one. Why would somebody’s previous drivingrecord be inadmissible in a case involving a traffic collision? Driving is ahabitual thing and previous mistakes on the road seem all but irrelevant. InJune of 2010, Galo was arrested for driving without a license, operating a car withoutproper insurance, and driving the wrong way down a one-way street in SanFrancisco. The first two charges, misdemeanors, were dropped and he pleadedguilty to the wrong way charge, an infraction. His car was impounded, but hesigned the car over to a Ms. Guzman who retrieved it from the impound andimmediately gave the keys back to Galo (which is illegal to do). A few monthslater he killed Drew, but none of that would be allowed in the trial. Even thefact that he is unlicensed is not allowed to be considered for the secondcharge Galo now faces: vehicular manslaughter. The first charge is drivingwithout a license.  

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