United States v. Johnson
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit
637 F.2d 1224 (1980)
The United States (plaintiff) tried Johnson (defendant) for assaulting Papse with an ax. At trial, the United States called Papse as a witness and during his testimony offered to admit a long handled ax into evidence as the assault weapon. Papse stated that he was “pretty sure” that the offered ax was the same ax that Johnson used to attack him. Papse also indicated that he was personally familiar with the ax because he had used that ax in the past and that he had seen the ax in Johnson’s hand. The ax was admitted into evidence and Johnson was convicted. Johnson appealed his conviction to the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, asserting that the ax should not have been admitted into evidence because the United States failed to properly authenticate the ax through Papse’s testimony. Johnson argued that Papse failed to distinguish the ax from other axes by identifying specific characteristics of the ax. Johnson also argued that the court should have exercised additional caution in determining the admissibility of the ax because the condition of the ax when it was admitted into evidence differed from the condition it was observed to be in at the scene.
Rule of Law
Holding and Reasoning (Williams, J.)
What to do next…
Unlock this case brief with a free (no-commitment) trial membership of Quimbee.
You’ll be in good company: Quimbee is one of the most widely used and trusted sites for law students, serving more than 97,000 law students since 2011. Some law schools—such as Yale, Vanderbilt, Berkeley, and the University of Illinois—even subscribe directly to Quimbee for all their law students. Read our student testimonials.
Learn more about Quimbee’s unique (and proven) approach to achieving great grades at law school.
Quimbee is a company hell-bent on one thing: helping you get an “A” in every course you take in law school, so you can graduate at the top of your class and get a high-paying law job. We’re not just a study aid for law students; we’re the study aid for law students. Read more about Quimbee.
Here's why 166,000 law students have relied on our case briefs:
- Written by law professors and practitioners, not other law students. 13,800 briefs, keyed to 187 casebooks. Top-notch customer support.
- The right amount of information, includes the facts, issues, rule of law, holding and reasoning, and any concurrences and dissents.
- Access in your classes, works on your mobile and tablet. Massive library of related video lessons and high quality multiple-choice questions.
- Easy to use, uniform format for every case brief. Written in plain English, not in legalese. Our briefs summarize and simplify; they don’t just repeat the court’s language.