State v. Mathis
Supreme Court of New Jersey
221 A.2d 529 (1966)
The State of New Jersey (plaintiff) successfully prosecuted Mathis (defendant) for killing Caswell. Gold and money were missing from Caswell's body. The prosecutor attempted to introduce evidence that Mathis had no regular work and lacked money. The prosecutor sought to prove the theft of Caswell's valuables supplied Mathis's motive for murder. The judge refused to allow the evidence to prove motive. The prosecutor persuaded the judge to allow the evidence for the valid purpose of impeaching Mathis's testimony. However, the prosecutor also called witnesses whose testimony undercut any impeachment value of evidence of Mathis's financial need. Mathis appealed his conviction to the Supreme Court of New Jersey.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Weintraub, C.J.)
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