Question: Police as eyewitness | A commits the murder of B. Two police officers are eye-witnesses of this occurrence. There is no witness except these two police officers. Can the court convict offender A on the basis of the testimony of only a police witness? Give reasons and also refer to case law, if any, on the point.… Read More »

Question: Police as eyewitness | A commits the murder of B. Two police officers are eye-witnesses of this occurrence. There is no witness except these two police officers. Can the court convict offender A on the basis of the testimony of only a police witness? Give reasons and also refer to case law, if any, on the point. Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. Police as eyewitness | [A commits the murder of B. Two police officers are eye-witnesses of this occurrence....

Question: Police as eyewitness | A commits the murder of B. Two police officers are eye-witnesses of this occurrence. There is no witness except these two police officers. Can the court convict offender A on the basis of the testimony of only a police witness? Give reasons and also refer to case law, if any, on the point.

Find the answer to the mains question only on Legal Bites. Police as eyewitness | [A commits the murder of B. Two police officers are eye-witnesses of this occurrence. There is no witness except these two police officers. Can the court convict offender A on the basis of the testimony of only a police witness? Give reasons and also refer to case law, if any, on the point.]

Answer

In the case of Govindaraju @ Govinda v. State by Sriramapuram P.S. & Anr (2012), the issue for consideration was whether a police officer can be a sole witness. If so, then with particular reference to the facts of the present case, where he alone had witnessed the occurrence as per the case of the prosecution. It cannot be stated as a rule that a police officer can or cannot be a sole eye-witness in a criminal case.

It will always depend upon the facts of a given case. If the testimony of such a witness is reliable, trustworthy, cogent, and duly corroborated by other witnesses or admissible evidence, then the statement of such witness cannot be discarded only on the ground that he is a police officer and may have some interest in the success of the case.

It is only when his interest in the success of the case is motivated by overzealousness to an extent of his involving innocent people; in that event, no credibility can be attached to the statement of such a witness.

This Court in the case of Girja Prasad (Dead) By LRs. v. State of M.P. [(2007) 7 SCC 625] while particularly referring to the evidence of a police officer, said that it is not the law that Police witnesses should not be relied upon and their evidence cannot be accepted unless it is corroborated in material particulars by other independent evidence. The presumption applies as much in favour of a police officer as any other person.

There is also no rule of law that lays down that no conviction can be recorded on the testimony of a police officer even if such evidence is otherwise reliable and trustworthy.

The rule of prudence may require more careful scrutiny of their evidence. If such a presumption is raised against the police officers without exception, it will be an attitude that could neither do credit to the magistracy nor good to the public, it can only bring down the prestige of the police administration.

Therefore, in the present case at hand, where there are only eyewitnesses are two police officers of the occurrence of murder by A against B, the conviction of A can be based on the testimony of only a police witness provided the testimony is reliable, trustworthy, cogent and duly corroborated.


Important Mains Questions Series for Judiciary, APO & University Exams

  1. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-I
  2. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-II
  3. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-III
  4. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-IV
  5. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-V
  6. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-VI
  7. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-VII
  8. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-VIII
  9. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-IX
  10. Law of Evidence Mains Questions Series Part-X
Updated On 2021-09-29T06:14:26+05:30
Admin LB

Admin LB

Next Story