Admissibility of Evidence Cases In Virginia

In Virginia, the trial court is granted broad, discretionary authority to determine, among other issues, the admissibility of evidence. See: Bowman v. Commonwealth, 30 Va. App. 298, 302, 516 S.E.2d 705, 707 (1999);

     the order of evidence before it, see Lebedun v. Commonwealth, 27 Va. App. 697, 715, 501 S.E.2d 427, 436 (1998);

     how voir dire is conducted, see Buchanan v. Commonwealth, 238 Va. 389, 400, 384 S.E.2d 757, 764 (1989);

     whether to grant a continuance to obtain counsel, see Bolden v. Commonwealth, 11 Va. App. 187, 190, 397 S.E.2d 534, 536 (1990);

     whether to order the separation and exclusion of witnesses, see Near v. Commonwealth, 202 Va. 20, 30, 116 S.E.2d 85, 92 (1960);

     whether to sequester a jury, see Gray v. Commonwealth, 233 Va. 313, 340, 356 S.E.2d 157, 172 (1987); whether to grant a motion for mistrial or a change in venue, see Kasi v. Commonwealth, 256 Va. 407, 420, 424, 508 S.E.2d 57, 64, 67 (1998);

     the extent of opening and closing arguments, see O'Dell v. Commonwealth, 234 Va. 672, 703, 364 S.E.2d 491, 509 (1988);

     and whether to suspend a sentence or grant probation, see Montalvo v. Commonwealth, 27 Va. App. 95, 98, 497 S.E.2d 519, 521 (1998).