5 Types of Evidence You Might Come Across as a Paralegal

paralegal woman working in a case

Working as a paralegal means working in a critical behind the scenes role, processing and handling different types of evidence that can prove vital in helping lawyers crack their cases. 

 

In this article, we’ll be looking at five of the most common types of evidence you can expect to be working with as a paralegal.

Direct evidence 

Direct evidence is one of the most common forms of evidence that you can expect to be dealing with. Alongside circumstantial evidence, direct evidence makes up one of the two types of so-called “primary evidence”.

 

The exact nature of direct evidence varies, but at its most basic direct evidence is any evidence that directly links the defendant to any crime for which they’re on trial, without any need for inference.

 

One of the more common types of direct evidence is eyewitness testimony of the crime.

Circumstantial Evidence

The second category of primary evidence, circumstantial evidence is evidence that implies a person committed a crime, rather than directly connecting them to it.

 

Where eyewitness testimony of the defendant actually committing the crime is direct evidence, the same testimony of the defendant fleeing the scene of the crime would count as circumstantial evidence. This is because the jury would have to infer from that evidence that the defendant was fleeing because they had committed the crime.

Physical Evidence

Physical evidence is any evidence found at the scene of the crime that links the defendant to the crime itself or the area in which the crime was committed. Shoe prints, tire prints, hair, blood, weapons, clothing, and belonging are the most common types of physical evidence.

Forensic Evidence

Occasionally referred to as scientific evidence, forensic evidence is any evidence that has come to light through the use of scientific methods. Thanks to TV programs like CSI, most people will recognize the more common types of forensic evidence, such as DNA matching, blood spatter analysis, fingerprint identification, hair evidence, fiber evidence, and particle identification.

Digital Evidence

An increasingly important form of evidence, digital evidence is any relevant information that is stored or transmitted in binary form. Emails, phone calls, IMs, texts, banks records, login information, and GPS positioning were once only used to prosecute computer-related crimes, but are now regularly used as part of standard criminal cases 

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Here at Northwest Career College, we run the top paralegal program in Nevada, offering our students the skills and experience they need to successfully enter the field of paralegal work and position themselves to maximize their earnings. Our Paralegal instructors are seasoned attorneys and highly trained professionals who are able not only to teach you the law but also to guide you through the many ways a paralegal integrates into a Las Vegas law practice.

 

We offer on-campus and online paralegal classes to accommodate your work and family schedule. Our Career Services team will work with you to help you find the best paralegal employment opportunity in Las Vegas, and their expertise in this area has given us a 100% success rate in job placement rate for paralegal graduates. Call us today at (702) 403-1592 to find out what our paralegal program can offer you.

 

Written by:

Lisa Myers, J.D., L.L.M.

Legal Studies Department Director

J.D. L.L.M. Campbell University

B.A. Corllins University