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Failed Courtroom Audio Recording Sparks New Texas Trial

Law360 – “The failure of a courtroom recording device to preserve part of a trial’s testimony led a Texas appeals court to grant an unusual request for a retrial Monday. Texas’ Sixth Court of Appeals said that because a courtroom audio recording device failed to record a “significant” portion of plaintiff Kelly Coplin’s testimony during a trial over a roofing contract dispute, he is entitled to a new trial. “The portion of the record that was lost is significant,” the opinion said. “Although we have no way of knowing how much of Coplin’s testimony is missing from the record, the fact that the missing testimony was that of the plaintiff means that it was significant.” Under Texas’ Rules of Appellate Procedure, an appellant is entitled to a new trial if they have timely requested a court reporter’s record of the proceedings; a significant portion of that record has been lost or destroyed, or in the case of an audio recording is inaudible, through no fault of the appellant; the missing record is necessary for the appeal; and the missing portion cannot be replaced, the appeals court said…” [h/t Ana Fatima Costa]
  • See also We are STENO. This is why we are still here. The February 2021 Senate impeachment trial of Donald Trump was a significant example of the critical work done by America’s stenographers. Ana Fatima Costa broadens our awareness about her profession whose members have been providing immediate transcription of the spoken word via cutting-edge CAT technology known as “realtime” (from shorthand to English) since the 1960s. Costa describes how her colleagues work diligently as guardians of the record in a challenging, stressful job capturing the spoken word in high-profile events, providing verbatim, accurate, official transcripts for Congressional hearings, in deposition rooms, at trials, arbitrations, and for captioning services used by media organizations.

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