RULE 611. MODE AND ORDER OF INTERROGATION AND PRESENTATION
(a) Control by Court. The court shall exercise reasonable control over the mode and order of interrogating witnesses and presenting evidence so as to (1) make the interrogation and presentation effective for the ascertainment of the truth, (2) avoid needless consumption of time, and (3) protect witnesses from harassment or undue embarrassment.
(b) Scope of Cross-Examination. Cross-examination should be limited to the subject matter of the direct examination and matters affecting the credibility of the witness. The court, in the exercise of discretion, may permit inquiry into additional matters as if on direct examination.
(c) Leading Questions. Leading questions should not be used on the direct examination of a witness except as may be necessary to develop the witness' testimony. Ordinarily, leading questions should be permitted on cross-examination. Whenever a party calls a hostile witness, an adverse party, or a witness identified with an adverse party, interrogation may be by leading questions.
Rule 611 is substantially the same as Rule 611 of the Federal Rules of Evidence. The rule gives the court wide discretion over the mode and order of presenting evidence. This comports with established North Dakota case law. See Killmer v. Duchscherer, 72 N.W.2d 650 (N.D. 1955).
The trial judge may allow a child witness to use an anatomically correct doll if a proper foundation is laid. The doll may not be used in a suggestive manner and the nonverbal testimony must be relevant. See, State v. Jenkins, 326 N.W.2d 67 (N.D. 1982).
Subdivision (c) was amended, effective March 1, 1990. The amendment is technical in nature and no substantive change is intended.
SOURCES: Minutes of Joint Procedure Committee: March 24-25, 1988, page 12; December 3, 1987, pages 15-16; May 21-22, 1987, pages 18-19; February 19-20, 1987, pages 10-12; June 3, 1976, page 2; October 1, 1975, page 6. Rule 611, Federal Rules of Evidence; Rule 611, SBAND proposal.
CONSIDERED: 31-04-01, 31-04-04, 31-04-05, NDCC.
CONSIDERED: Rules 30, 31, 32, 43(b), NDRCivP.