In all criminal cases, the prosecutor has the burden of proving, beyond a reasonable doubt, that the defendant committed the offense charge, which includes proving that the defendant was present at the scene and not somewhere else at the time.
Where there is evidence suggesting that a defendant was elsewhere at the time when the particular offense was committed, a jury would obviously have to decide whether or not to believe such evidence.
An Alibi Witness, however, is subject to the same scrutiny and examination as all witnesses who testify in court. At the end of the day, it is up to the jury whether to believe or disbelieve an Alibi Witness, and whether they do or don't may largely depend on credibility of the witness. Accordingly, an Alibi Witness' credibility may be impeached by the prosecutor by establishing that the witness:
- Knew of the pending charges in sufficient detail to realize that he or she possessed exculpatory information;
- Had reason to make such information available;
- Was familiar with the way to report it to the proper authorities; and
- Neither the defendant nor defense counsel asked the witness to refrain from doing so.
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