State v. Vaughan, No. 30087

Docket NºNo. 30087
Citation184 N.E.2d 143, 243 Ind. 221
Case DateJuly 13, 1962
CourtSupreme Court of Indiana

Page 143

184 N.E.2d 143
243 Ind. 221
STATE of Indiana, Appellant,
v.
David M. VAUGHAN and Irene Vaughan (H & W), Appellees.
No. 30087.
Supreme Court of Indiana.
July 13, 1962.

[243 Ind. 224]

Page 145

Edwin K. Steers, Atty. Gen., and Frank E. Spencer, Deputy Atty. Gen., Indianapolis, for appellant.

Russell I. Richardson, Lebanon, Vaughan & Vaughan, Richard Donahue and Charles R. Vaughan, Lafayette, for appellees.

ACHOR, Judge.

This is an appeal from a judgment in a proceedings in eminent domain brought by appellant to condemn and appropriate certain land of the appellees for use as a right of way by the Highway Department of the State of Indiana. Judgment was rendered for the appellees in the sum of $32,154.90, which sum included $2,154.90 in interest. The land appropriated consisted of 7.501 acres, more or less, located near Tippecanoe River between the cities of Lafayette and West Lafayette.

Appellant has assigned as error the overruling of its motion for new trial. The separate grounds of the motion upon which appellant relies are hereinafter set forth. Grounds 4, 5, 6 and 7 of appellant's motion for new trial all raised similar questions pertaining to appellees' Exhibit No. 1, which was a chart, or drawing, made by the appellee David M. Vaughan, by tracing over a plat prepared by an engineer, upon which plat the witness Vaughan had made certain additional notations which further identified the area shown by the plat. The appellant objected to the admission of the exhibit on the ground that it 'constitutes hear-say evidence and that the same is self-serving and not the best evidence of all those things purported to be shown thereon. * * * It shows many things that can only be properly shown, * * * by the records. It shows things there in a projection apparently of plans I don't know of this witness.'

[243 Ind. 225] Contrary to appllant's contention, a drawing made by a witness, for the purpose of clarifying testimony regarding the location of objects and places which otherwise would be difficult to locate and describe, may properly, within the discretion of the trial court, be received in evidence. Southern Indiana Gas and Electric Co. v. Jones (1960), 240 Ind. 434, 166 N.E.2d 127; Northern Indiana Public Service Co. v. Darling (1959), 239 Ind. 237, 154 N.E.2d 881; Ohio Valley Railway and Terminal Company v. Kerth (1892), 130 Ind. 314, 30 N.E. 298; United States v. Coronado Beach Co. (1921), 255 U.S. 472, 41 S.Ct. 378, 65 L.Ed. 736; Pennsylvania R. Co. v. Lincoln Trust Co. Admr. (1929), 91 Ind.App. 28, 167 N.E. 721, reh. denied 170 N.E. 92; 7 Am.Jur., Proof of Facts, 609, 610; 2 Jones on Evidence § 458 (5th ed.) The fact that such sketches or drawings are self-serving does not render them objectionable. Neither does the fact that the subject matter of notations thereon are hearsay to the witness render the exhibit objectionable, unless they are either directly or indirectly related to the subject matter of the action. For example, neither a notation on the plat, nor the testimony of a witnesses to the effect that designated parcels of land were owned by specific individuals, was objectionable, so long as the purpose of the evidence was merely to identify or locate other properties with respect to its relationship to the condemned land, which is the subject of the particular controversy. Here, the title to the land identified was not an issue. Therefore, the best evidence rule does not apply to the admission of the plat which ascribed ownership of certain tracts of land as shown on the plat. The best evidence rule applies with respect to proof of ownership only when [243 Ind. 226] the issue of title or ownership is involved. It does not apply when the question of title is not an issue but is merely collateral to the primary question. Farr v. Zoning Board of Appeals (1953), 139 Conn. 577, 582, 95 A.2d 792, 794; City of

Page 146

Chicago v. Le Moyne (1902), C.C.A.--7, 119 F. 662, 666; File v. Springel (1892), 132 Ind. 312, 314, 315, 31 N.E. 1054, 1055; Roberts v. Atlanta Cemetery Ass'n (1917), 146 Ga. 490, 492, 91 S.E. 675, 676. 4 Wigmore on Evidence § 1253 (3rd ed.).

Appellant's objection that the exhibit 'shows things there in a projection apparently of plans I don't know of this witness,' is ambiguous. The fact that the plat showed plans for the projected commercial use of the property, regarding which the witness had not testified, did not render the plat inadmissible. Neither did the fact that the sketch designated certain areas as adaptable for specified uses render the plat inadmissible, so long as testimony regarding the value of the land appropriated was related to the tract appropriated and not to the hypothetically projected subdivisions thereof. Northern Ind. Pub. Serv. Co. v. McCoy et ux. (1959), 239 Ind. 301, 157 N.E.2d 181; United States v. Coronado Beach Co., supra; Ohio Valley Railway and Terminal Company v. Kerth, supra; Campbell v. New Haven (1924), 101 Conn. 173, 125 A. 650.

Also, the state has assigned as error, and here argues on appeal as cause for reversal, the fact that the trial court permitted testimony as to the number of cubic yards of fill which would be required to bring 3 of the 7.501 acres appropriated up to a satisfactory level for commercial use. The objection of the state is as follows: 'The...

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26 practice notes
  • Noblesville Casting Div. of TRW, Inc. v. Prince
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • August 11, 1982
    ...of the evidence and the ultimate facts in issue. Id.; Reid v. State, (1978) 267 Ind. 555, 372 N.E.2d 1149; State v. Vaughan, (1962) 243 Ind. 221, 184 N.E.2d 143; see also, M. Seidman, THE LAW OF EVIDENCE IN INDIANA p. 21 In addition, given a subject matter appropriate for expert testimony, ......
  • Shultz v. State, No. 2-980
    • United States
    • March 16, 1981
    ...in analyzing the blood, the trial judge operated within the scope of his discretion in admitting her testimony. State v. Vaughn (1962), 243 Ind. 221, 184 N.E.2d 143; Linton-Summit Coal Company v. Hutchison (1953), 232 Ind. 369, 111 N.E.2d 819. ISSUE FIVE Were Shultz's constitutional rights ......
  • State v. Bouras, No. 1-380A57
    • United States
    • Indiana Court of Appeals of Indiana
    • July 29, 1981
    ...the witness is sufficiently qualified as an expert to make it likely his informed inference will aid the jury. State v. Vaughan, (1962) 243 Ind. 221, 184 N.E.2d 143; Davis v. Schneider, (1979) Ind.App., 395 N.E.2d 283; Northern Indiana Public Service Co. v. Otis, (1969) 145 Ind.App. 159, 25......
  • Dayton Walther Corp. v. Caldwell, No. 480S103
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • April 17, 1980
    ...of a prejudicial influence resulting from its own neglect and omission. . . ." (Citation omitted) In State v. Vaughan, (1962) 243 Ind. 221, 227, 184 N.E.2d 143, 146, our Supreme Court ". . . It is not error to admit evidence if it is relevant(,) material and competent for any use.......
  • Request a trial to view additional results
26 cases
  • Noblesville Casting Div. of TRW, Inc. v. Prince
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • August 11, 1982
    ...of the evidence and the ultimate facts in issue. Id.; Reid v. State, (1978) 267 Ind. 555, 372 N.E.2d 1149; State v. Vaughan, (1962) 243 Ind. 221, 184 N.E.2d 143; see also, M. Seidman, THE LAW OF EVIDENCE IN INDIANA p. 21 In addition, given a subject matter appropriate for expert testimony, ......
  • Shultz v. State, No. 2-980
    • United States
    • March 16, 1981
    ...in analyzing the blood, the trial judge operated within the scope of his discretion in admitting her testimony. State v. Vaughn (1962), 243 Ind. 221, 184 N.E.2d 143; Linton-Summit Coal Company v. Hutchison (1953), 232 Ind. 369, 111 N.E.2d 819. ISSUE FIVE Were Shultz's constitutional rights ......
  • State v. Bouras, No. 1-380A57
    • United States
    • Indiana Court of Appeals of Indiana
    • July 29, 1981
    ...the witness is sufficiently qualified as an expert to make it likely his informed inference will aid the jury. State v. Vaughan, (1962) 243 Ind. 221, 184 N.E.2d 143; Davis v. Schneider, (1979) Ind.App., 395 N.E.2d 283; Northern Indiana Public Service Co. v. Otis, (1969) 145 Ind.App. 159, 25......
  • Dayton Walther Corp. v. Caldwell, No. 480S103
    • United States
    • Indiana Supreme Court of Indiana
    • April 17, 1980
    ...of a prejudicial influence resulting from its own neglect and omission. . . ." (Citation omitted) In State v. Vaughan, (1962) 243 Ind. 221, 227, 184 N.E.2d 143, 146, our Supreme Court ". . . It is not error to admit evidence if it is relevant(,) material and competent for any use.......
  • Request a trial to view additional results

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