RULE 609. IMPEACHMENT BY EVIDENCE OF A CRIMINAL CONVICTION
Effective Date: 3/1/2014
(a) In General. The following rules apply to attacking a witness's character for truthfulness by evidence of a criminal conviction:
(1) for a crime that, in the convicting jurisdiction, was punishable by death or by imprisonment for more than one year, the evidence:(A) must be admitted, subject to Rule 403, in a civil case or in a criminal case in which the witness is not a defendant; and(B) must be admitted in a criminal case in which the witness is a defendant, if the probative value of the evidence outweighs its prejudicial effect to that defendant; and(2) for any crime regardless of the punishment, the evidence must be admitted if the elements of the crime required proving, or the witness's admitting, a dishonest act or false statement.
(b) Time Limit. Evidence of a conviction under this rule is not admissible if a period of more than ten years has elapsed since the date of conviction or of the release of the witness from any confinement imposed for that conviction, whichever is the later date unless the witness is still in confinement for that conviction.
(c) Effect of a Pardon, Annulment, or Certificate of Rehabilitation.Evidence of a conviction is not admissible if:
(1) the conviction has been vacated or is the subject of a pardon, annulment, certificate of rehabilitation, or other equivalent procedure based on a finding that the person has been rehabilitated, and the person has not been convicted of a later crime punishable by death or by imprisonment for more than one year; or
(2) the conviction has been the subject of a pardon, annulment, or other equivalent procedure based on a finding of innocence.
(d) Juvenile Adjudications. Evidence of a juvenile adjudication is admissible under this rule only if:
(1) it is offered in a criminal case;
(2) the adjudication was of a witness other than the defendant;
(3) an adult's conviction for that offense would be admissible to attack the adult's credibility; and
(4) admitting the evidence is necessary to fairly determine guilt or innocence.
(e) Pendency of an Appeal. A conviction that satisfies this rule is admissible even if an appeal is pending. Evidence of the pendency is also admissible.
Rule 609 was amended, effective March 1, 1990, January 1, 1995, March 1, 2008; March 1, 2014.
Rule 609 is taken from the Uniform Rules of Evidence (1974). Subdivision (c) was modified by adding the words "is vacated" in paragraph (1). This was done to assure that cases involving deferred imposition of sentences would be covered.
This rule varies from Fed.R.Ev. 609 in that the federal rule gives a court discretion, in subdivision (b), to extend the ten-year period during which evidence of a conviction may be admitted. Under this rule, the court has no discretion in the matter.
Rule 609 was amended, effective March 1, 1990. The amendment is technical in nature and no substantive change is intended.
Subdivision (a) was amended, effective January 1, 1995, to track the 1990 federal amendment.
Subdivision (a) was amended, effective March 1, 2008. The amendment states the circumstances under which evidence of a conviction of a crime involving dishonesty or false statement may be admitted.
Subdivision (e) was added to the rule, effective March 1, 2014, to clarify that convictions pending appeal are admissible under this rule.
Rule 609 was amended, effective March 1, 2014, in response to the December 1, 2011, revision of the Federal Rules of Evidence. The language and organization of the rule were changed to make the rule more easily understood and to make style and terminology consistent throughout the rules.
SOURCES: Minutes of Joint Procedure Committee of April 26-27, 2012, pages 24-25; September 28-29, 2006, pages 16-18; September 23-24, 1993, page 21; November 7-8, 1991, pages 4-5; October 25-26, 1990, page 16; March 24-25, 1988, page 12; December 3, 1987, page 15; April 26-27, 1979, page 9; April 8, 1976, pages 28-29; October 1, 1975, page 5. Fed.R.Ev. 609; Rule 609, SBAND proposal; Rule 609, Uniform Rules of Evidence (1974).