ADMISSIBILITY OF POLICE REPORT
Rule of Evidence 803(8) provides an exception to the hearsay rule for certified copies of public records.
Records, reports, statements, or data compilations, in any form, of public offices or agencies setting forth:
(A) the activities of the office or agency;
(B) matters observed pursuant to duty imposed by law as to which matters there was a duty to report,
excluding in criminal cases matters observed by police officers and other law enforcement personnel; or
(C) in civil cases as to any party and in criminal cases as against the state, factual findings resulting from an
investigation made pursuant to authority granted by law;
unless the sources of information or other circumstances indicate lack of trustworthiness.
Tex. R. Evid. 803 (8). Here, there was no indication that the police report lacked trustworthiness. Therefore,
the trial court did not err by admitting the police report on this basis. E.g., Sciarrilla v. Osborne, 946 S.W.2d
919, 923–24 (Tex. App.—Beaumont 1997, pet. denied) (accident reports are admissible as exception to the
hearsay rule); accord Carter v. Steere Tank Lines, Inc., 835 S.W.2d 176, 181 (Tex. App.—Amarillo 1992,
writ denied) (citing Clement v. Texas Dept. of Public Safety, 726 S.W.2d 579, 581 (Tex. App.—Fort Worth
1986, no writ); Porter v. Texas Dept. of Public Safety, 712 S.W.2d 263, 265 (Tex. App.—San Antonio 1986,
no writ)). However, we address appellant’s contention that the trial court improperly admitted the police
report on the ground that it includes expert opinions without any underlying foundation because the police
officer did not testify as to his qualifications or to the basis of his opinions.
Lawrence objected generally to the possible inclusion of expert opinion in the police report, saying “if any
conclusions or anything like that were offered, they’re, in essence, expert conclusions and there we would
have no basis to cross-examine or even to determine the basis for those conclusions from that report.”
Lawrence specifically objected to the officer’s indication that driver inattention and failure to drive in a single
lane did or may have contributed to the collision. The trial court redacted those portions of the report.
Specific Objection Required
An objection to proffered evidence must be specific. Tex. R. Evid. 103. A general objection to evidence as a
whole, which does not point out specifically the portion objected to, is properly overruled if any part of that
evidence is admissible. Speier v. Webster College, 616 S.W.2d 617, 619 (Tex. 1981); Brown & Root, Inc. v.
Haddad, 142 Tex. 624, 180 S.W.2d 339, 341 (1944); Tex. Mun. Power Agency v. Berger, 600 S.W.2d 850,
854 (Tex. Civ. App.—Houston [1st Dist.] 1980, no writ).
Lawrence v. Geico (Tex.App.- Houston [1st Dist.] Jul. 2, 2009)(Sharp)
(car wreck, subrogation claim in car collision, SoL, diligence in procuring service on defendant, admission of
evidence, police report, requirements for proper evidentiary objection, specificity, hearsay objection)
AFFIRM TRIAL COURT JUDGMENT: Opinion by Justice Sharp
Before Justices Taft, Bland and Sharp
01-07-00873-CV Jonathan A. Lawrence v. Geico General Insurance Company, as Subrogee
Appeal from the 405th District Court of Galveston County
Trial Court Judge: Hon. Wayne J. Mallia
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