Rule 803.1. Exceptions to the Rule Against Hearsay—Testimony of Declarant Necessary.

 The following statements are not excluded by the rule against hearsay if the declarant testifies and is subject to cross-examination about the prior statement:

   (1)  Prior Inconsistent Statement of Declarant-Witness. A prior statement by a declarant-witness that is inconsistent with the declarant-witness’s testimony and:

       (A)   was given under oath subject to the penalty of perjury at a trial, hearing, or other proceeding, or in a deposition;

       (B)   is a writing signed and adopted by the declarant; or

       (C)   is a verbatim contemporaneous electronic, audiotaped, or videotaped recording of an oral statement.


   The Federal Rules treat statements corresponding to Pa.R.E. 803.1(1) and (2) as ‘‘not hearsay’’ and places them in F.R.E. 801(d)(1)(A) and (C). Pennsylvania follows the traditional approach that treats these statements as exceptions to the hearsay rule if the declarant testifies at the trial.

   Pa.R.E. 803.1(1) is consistent with prior Pennsylvania case law. See Commonwealth v. Brady, 510 Pa. 123, 507 A.2d 66 (1986) (seminal case that overruled close to two centuries of decisional law in Pennsylvania and held that the recorded statement of a witness to a murder, inconsistent with her testimony at trial, was properly admitted as substantive evidence, excepted to the hearsay rule); Commonwealth v. Lively, 530 Pa. 464, 610 A.2d 7 (1992). In Commonwealth v. Wilson, 550 Pa. 518, 707 A.2d 1114 (1998), the Supreme Court held that to be admissible under this rule an oral statement must be a verbatim contemporaneous recording in electronic, audiotaped, or videotaped form.

   An inconsistent statement of a witness that does not qualify as an exception to the hearsay rule may still be introduced to impeach the credibility of the witness. See Pa.R.E. 613.


   The provisions of this Rule 803.1 amended March 10, 2000, effective immediately, 30 Pa.B. 1639; rescinded and replaced January 17, 2013, effective in sixty days, 43 Pa.B. 620. Immediately preceding text appears at serial pages (285610) and (265707).

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