Chapter 6 - §6. Appellate review

JurisdictionUnited States

§6. Appellate review

A trial court's determination under Evid. C. §352 is reviewed for a clear abuse of discretion. People v. Dworak (2021) 11 Cal.5th 881, 900; People v. Jones (2017) 3 Cal.5th 583, 609; People v. Minific (1996) 13 Cal.4th 1055, 1070; see People v. Johnsen (2021) 10 Cal.5th 1116, 1176 (appellate court intervention is only warranted when probative value of the evidence is clearly outweighed by prejudicial effect); People v. Caro (2019) 7 Cal.5th 463, 502 (trial court has broad discretion over admission of photographs showing disturbing details); People v. Anderson (2018) 5 Cal.5th 372, 402 (trial court has broad discretion in determining evidence's relevance and in assessing whether its prejudicial effect outweighs its probative value); People v. Hardy (2018) 5 Cal.5th 56, 87 (same); People v. Clark (2016) 63 Cal.4th 522, 572 (trial court has broad discretion in evaluating whether concerns of undue prejudice, confusion, or consumption of time substantially outweigh probative value of evidence). To prove a clear abuse of discretion, the complaining party must establish that the court exercised its discretion in an arbitrary, capricious, or patently absurd manner that resulted in a "manifest miscarriage of justice." People v. Miles (2020) 9 Cal.5th 513, 587-88; People v. Bell (2019) 7 Cal.5th 70, 105; People v. Mora (2018) 5 Cal.5th 442, 480; People v. Jackson (2016) 1 Cal.5th 269, 330. Thus, a court's exercise of discretion under Evid. C. §352 will be upheld on appeal unless the reviewing court determines that it is reasonably probable that a more favorable result to the appellant would have been reached without the error. See People v. Battle (2021) 11 Cal.5th 749, 801; People v. Stewart (2004) 33 Cal.4th 425, 480-81; People v. Munoz (2d Dist.2019) 31 Cal.App.5th 143, 168.

Federal Comparison


The Federal Rule governing the discretionary exclusion of evidence is very similar to Evid. C. §352. FRE 403 provides that "[t]he court may exclude relevant evidence if its probative value is substantially
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