Sunday, October 30, 2016

Smotherman v. Cass Regional Medical Center

Opinion handed down September 20, 2016

            In Smotherman v. Cass Regional Medical Center, the Supreme Court of Missouri addressed the issue of whether a juror’s testimony regarding the extent to which misconduct affected jury deliberations is sufficient to overcome the presumption of prejudice created by the misconduct.[1]  As discussed below, the court’s decision represents a step back from recent decisions that attempted to clarify the extrinsic evidence exemption to the Mansfield Rule and ignores past decisions regarding the weight that should be assigned to such testimony.