Does the arresting officer need to be in court?

UPDATED: Sep 4, 2012

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Does the arresting officer need to be in court?

My son got a DUI. The ticket said to appear at 9:00 am on the 3rd. However, 5 days earlier, a different officer came to the door and reissued the ticket because the date of the hearing was wrong. It is my understanding that the original arresting officer had since left his position in our county and taken a new job, so he will not be in court for the hearing or trial. Does’t the original arresting officer need to be in court to testify?

Asked on September 4, 2012 under Criminal Law, Oregon


B.H.F., Member, Texas State Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

For preliminary hearings-- like a defendant's arraignment, entry of their plea or guilty or not guilty, and ministerial settings, then the officer does not need to be present.  If the setting is for an actual trial on the issue of whether your son drove while intoxicated, then yes... he would have to appear because anything the other officer said would be inadmissible hearsay.  The original officer can be subpoeaned to appear by the prosecutor, even if they have new employment elsewhere.

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