Delaware Trial Handbook § 19:6. THE RULE OF COMPLETENESS

When part of a written or recorded statement is introduced by a party, an adverse party may require the introduction of any other part or any other related written or recorded statement which in fairness ought to be considered contemporaneously with it.60 The purpose of this rule is to prevent misleading impressions which often result from taking matters out of context.61 The “fairness” test vests a degree of discretion with the trial court in deciding whether to admit other parts of a writing or recording.62 This rule is circumscribed by two qualifications: the portions sought to be admitted (1) must be relevant to the issues and (2) only those parts which qualify or explain the subject matter of the portion offered by the opponent need be admitted.62.1

60. D.R.E. 106.

61. Flamer v. State, 953 A.2d 130, 135 (Del. 2008); Ayers v. State, 844 A.2d 304, 311 (Del. 2004); Floudiotis v. State, 726 A.2d 1196, 1213-14 (Del.1999); Burke v. State, 484 A.2d 490, 497 (Del. 1984).

62. Williamson v. State. 707 A.2d 350, 361 (Del. 1998); Burke v. State, 484 A.2d 490, 497 (Del. 1984).

62.1. Flamer v. State, 953 A.2d 130, 135 (Del. 2008)

© 2010  David L. Finger