Commonwealth v. Fitzpatrick

The “state of mind” exception to the hearsay rule took center stage when detectives investigating a homicide found a note the decedent wrote stating, “If something happens to me—JOE.” The decedent also sent an email to herself in which she indicated she feared Joe, her husband. Though the trial court found that the notes were admissible as then-existing mental, emotional, or physical condition exception to the hearsay rule, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court reversed and held the evidence inadmissible. Justice Wecht’s majority opinion is a must-read for any litigator in Pennsylvania.

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