Suppression of Evidence
Suppression of evidence is a term synonymous with the United States of America. It basically means the act of preventing some evidence from appearing or being presented during the trial stage.
In this matter Jill Jones was hit by Marshall down an intersection. Jill was rushed to hospital and then retained the services of an attorney to sue Marshall for various traffic offences. Marshall is then served with summons to appear in a court to answer to the charges.
The salient issues of dispute here are: was the service done in a proper way and by the proper server. The second issue was if the court is a court with competent jurisdiction to hear the matter. These two issues are very critical before commencement of any matter in law. A proper trial process should be facilitated by competent process servers and should be in a court of competent jurisdiction. If these two important principles are not observed, then the process can be contested at any stage of the trial.
One of the issues under serious contestation and therefore one of the grounds for objection of the process is that of service upon Marshall. The service was done by a seventeen year old. A seventeen year old is not competent to serve any court document because such service must be done by an adult only. Most jurisdictions consider eighteen to be the age adulthood begins a therefore age of the majority. On August 11, 2004 the process servers filed their affidavits of service with the County Clerk of Bronx County. Affidavits of service are only filed by the person who executed the service only. The process servers filing what they did not serve does not amount to a proper service. The affidavits of service should be returned and filed with the court having competent jurisdiction and not the clerks of a court. An affidavit would at most times contain a clause affirming the legal age. The service to Marshall was done by a minor who is legally incompetent and this renders the whole service void.
The jurisdiction of a court is determined by various factors and circumstances. The court can have jurisdiction depending on the place the incident occurs. Jill Jones was mowed down in central park by Maxwell and therefore the criminal case was filed in a New York court. Jurisdiction can also be derived if the case is filed in the area the plaintiff is domiciled. Maxwell seeks to dismiss the suit on the defense of lack of personal jurisdiction. Personal jurisdiction is derived by a court over persons within the county. The action in this case occurred in New York and therefore the courts in New York have jurisdiction. A case can only be filed in one court.
Although a proper service was not done by a competent process server, the court can remedy the situation by requiring that Marshall be served in a proper manner. This action is taken to prevent individuals from evading justice and suppressing evidence or preventing a court of law from hearing evidence. It is basically stopping a court from hearing cases occasioned by technicalities
The issue of jurisdiction is salient in this case. The Supreme Court sitting in Bronx did not have jurisdiction to hear this matter. The court competent should either be in New York or in Connecticut where the aggrieved party is situated. This is based on the fact that the place of action gets the first priority to hear the matter followed by the place of residence.
Jill Jones is also suing the City of New York County for negligence in design and not supervising safety of pedestrians in the park. The New York County has ensured safety of pedestrians by putting up spotlights and speed limits. The city has also provided designated walking areas safe for pedestrians. The county may not be negligent because it has tried to make sure everybody is safe despite the huge numbers of citizens flocking the park.
In the second case scenario, Marshall runs a web based New Jersey corporation. The corporation is situated in New Jersey. Marshall lives in Teaneck New Jersey. The corporation and Marshall therefore are in one state. Al Smith a resident of Bronx County is an aggrieved party who being unable to purchase a ticket to Derek Jeter appreciation day at the Yankees Stadium, decides to purchase twenty balls signed by an authentic signature of Derek Jeter. On proper investigation Al Smith realizes that the signature was not authentic and therefore a fraud. The balls cost Al Smith two thousand dollars. Al Smith tried to contact Marshall but he was not responsive. Smith decided to file a complaint as a result, of fraud and breach of contract at Bronx Supreme court. Al Smith filed the case in a higher court without jurisdiction to hear the matter on the first instance.
Al Smith decided to effect service upon Marshall as he was appearing in court for his other case. Such service is considered valid. Al Smith cannot serve the summons because he is an interested party to the case. A person of 18 years and above can serve the summons on his behalf. Marshalls Web Corporation was properly served by process servers. The summons was prepared by Al Smith.
Marshall appeared in court subsequently seeking to dismiss an order requiring his appearance claiming that the court lacked competent jurisdiction to hear the matter. The matter should be filed in a court of first instance. Supreme courts are courts of last resort. Marshall alleges lack of personal jurisdiction and therefore the court lacked competency.
However if the matter was in a court of competent jurisdiction, procuring and service was done by competent process servers, then Marshall has a case to answer.
Marshall is fraudulent. A web based product is likely to be consumed by a larger audience and therefore claims by Marshall that information on his web were not for consumption in other states is unrealistic.
There was also a clear breach of contract. A breach of contract is valid because there was an invitation to treat and acceptance. Al Smith bought twenty balls Signed by Derek Jeter. The balls delivered were against the terms of the contract because an authentic signature was a requirement or was a term in the contract. Not adhering to a term in contract may result to repudiation. A contract breached is no contract and therefore Al Smith should be compensated the amount used to purchase the balls and any damages awarded if the court deems it fit to do so.
Fraud was also present and was clearly demonstrated when Marshalls company delivered fake balls purportedly signed by Derek. The balls were infact signed by Marshall’s sister. The certificates intended to prove authenticity of the balls were also fake. Marshall is a fraudulent man and should be punished accordingly.