Ephedrine database allowable under business record hearsay exception

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The Indiana Court of Appeals held Thursday that a National Precursor Log Exchange report documenting the purchases of ephedrine and pseudoephedrine by a defendant are allowed into evidence under the business record exception to the hearsay rule.

In Jeffrey Embrey v. State of Indiana, 82A01-1211-CR-494, Jeffrey Embrey was charged with and convicted of Class B felony dealing in methamphetamine, Class C felony neglect of a dependent and Class D felony maintaining a common nuisance after U.S. Marshal’s Fugitive Task Force executed a warrant on a person believed to be living where Embrey lived. The officers found evidence of meth manufacturing and that Embrey and his child lived in the home.

Indiana law requires that retailers selling non-prescription ephedrine and pseudoephedrine electronically submit a record of all sales of products containing ephedrine and pseudoephedrine to the NPLEx as part of the retailer’s regularly conducted business activity. The report introduced at Embrey’s trial showed all his purchases of the drugs in the month prior to his arrest and noted that he had been refused sales several times.

The computerized NPLEx database is maintained by Appriss, Inc. Embrey argued that the NPLEx report shouldn’t have been admitted because James Acquisto, the custodian of records for Appriss, didn’t have firsthand knowledge of the recorded transactions.

“We conclude that the NPLEx report is imbued with an independent indicia of trustworthiness, and, as such, qualifies as a business record,” Judge Cale Bradford wrote for the court. “The information contained in the NPLEx report was submitted to the NPLEx database in the course of the retailers’ regular business activity at the time of the purchase or attempted purchase by employees of the retailers who had firsthand knowledge of the transactions. These submissions were made by individuals who, in the routine course of their employment, had a duty to accurately report the information and could be held criminally liable for a knowing or intentional failure to make an accurate report.”

“Because the individuals submitting the information had both firsthand knowledge of the purchases or attempted purchases as well as a duty to accurately report the purchases or attempted purchases, we conclude that Acquisto, as custodian of the records, was not required to have firsthand knowledge of the purchases or attempted purchases,” he continued.

The judges also found sufficient evidence supported that the child found in the home by the officers was Embrey’s child and affirmed his neglect of a dependent conviction.



  • COA rewrites law
    Here we go again, the court of appeals, thinks, that they have the right to re write the law, to suit their fancy. Heresay is heresay, regardless of how reliable the source. Unless there is first hand knowledge, it is heresay and if heresay is inadmissable in one case it is inadmissable in all cases. But what are you going to do? The supreme court rules a law is unconstitutional, then later says it is constitutional. Then, you have justice scalia, saying, it is okay to execute an innocent person. I wonder how many people think he would say that if he was the innocent person facing execution!

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  1. I think the cops are doing a great job locking up criminals. The Murder rates in the inner cities are skyrocketing and you think that too any people are being incarcerated. Maybe we need to lock up more of them. We have the ACLU, BLM, NAACP, Civil right Division of the DOJ, the innocent Project etc. We have court system with an appeal process that can go on for years, with attorneys supplied by the government. I'm confused as to how that translates into the idea that the defendants are not being represented properly. Maybe the attorneys need to do more Pro-Bono work

  2. We do not have 10% of our population (which would mean about 32 million) incarcerated. It's closer to 2%.

  3. If a class action suit or other manner of retribution is possible, count me in. I have email and voicemail from the man. He colluded with opposing counsel, I am certain. My case was damaged so severely it nearly lost me everything and I am still paying dearly.

  4. There's probably a lot of blame that can be cast around for Indiana Tech's abysmal bar passage rate this last February. The folks who decided that Indiana, a state with roughly 16,000 to 18,000 attorneys, needs a fifth law school need to question the motives that drove their support of this project. Others, who have been "strong supporters" of the law school, should likewise ask themselves why they believe this institution should be supported. Is it because it fills some real need in the state? Or is it, instead, nothing more than a resume builder for those who teach there part-time? And others who make excuses for the students' poor performance, especially those who offer nothing more than conspiracy theories to back up their claims--who are they helping? What evidence do they have to support their posturing? Ultimately, though, like most everything in life, whether one succeeds or fails is entirely within one's own hands. At least one student from Indiana Tech proved this when he/she took and passed the February bar. A second Indiana Tech student proved this when they took the bar in another state and passed. As for the remaining 9 who took the bar and didn't pass (apparently, one of the students successfully appealed his/her original score), it's now up to them (and nobody else) to ensure that they pass on their second attempt. These folks should feel no shame; many currently successful practicing attorneys failed the bar exam on their first try. These same attorneys picked themselves up, dusted themselves off, and got back to the rigorous study needed to ensure they would pass on their second go 'round. This is what the Indiana Tech students who didn't pass the first time need to do. Of course, none of this answers such questions as whether Indiana Tech should be accredited by the ABA, whether the school should keep its doors open, or, most importantly, whether it should have even opened its doors in the first place. Those who promoted the idea of a fifth law school in Indiana need to do a lot of soul-searching regarding their decisions. These same people should never be allowed, again, to have a say about the future of legal education in this state or anywhere else. Indiana already has four law schools. That's probably one more than it really needs. But it's more than enough.

  5. This man Steve Hubbard goes on any online post or forum he can find and tries to push his company. He said court reporters would be obsolete a few years ago, yet here we are. How does he have time to search out every single post about court reporters and even spy in private court reporting forums if his company is so successful???? Dude, get a life. And back to what this post was about, I agree that some national firms cause a huge problem.