State v. SneadAnnotate this Case
Defendant was indicted for felony larceny and conspiracy to commit felony larceny. Defendant admitted that he stole clothing from Belk’s Department Store, and Belk’s surveillance system captured the theft on video. The only contested issue at trial was the value and quantity of the stolen clothing shirts. During trial, the court admitted the surveillance video showing Defendant stealing shirts. The State called a regional loss prevention manager for Belk to authenticate the video for admission and to offer his opinion about the contents of the video. The jury found Defendant guilty. The Court of Appeals vacated Defendant’s conviction for felony larceny, concluding that the trial court erred by admitting the video because it was not properly authenticated and erred in admitting the witness’s estimate of the value of the stolen shirts because the testimony was not based on the witness’s firsthand knowledge or perception. The Supreme Court reversed, holding (1) the State properly authenticated the video by presenting evidence that the video surveillance system was reliable and that the subject video had not been altered; and (2) because Defendant failed to make a timely objection to the witness’s testimony, he failed to preserve that issue for appellate review.