Title 40
Human Services

Chapter 11
Abused and Neglected Children

R.I. Gen. Laws § 40-11-7.2

§ 40-11-7.2. Evidence.

(a) A videotape recording made by the department of children, youth and families, a law enforcement officer, a hospital, or a children’s advocacy center of an interview of or statement made by a child who is the subject of an investigation conducted pursuant to § 40-11-7 is admissible in any court proceeding pursuant to this chapter, notwithstanding any objection to hearsay statements contained therein, provided it is relevant and material and provided its probative value substantially outweighs the danger of unfair prejudice to the child’s parent, guardian, or other person responsible for the child’s welfare. The circumstances of the making of the videotape recording, including the maker’s lack of personal knowledge, may be proved to affect its weight.

(b) Prior to the videotaped recording being introduced into evidence the court shall first determine that:

(1) The statement is sworn to under oath by the child and the significance of the oath is explained to the child;

(2) The recording is both visual and aural and is recorded on film or videotaped or by other electronic means;

(3) The recording equipment was capable of making an accurate recording, the operator of the equipment was competent, and the recording is accurate and has not been altered;

(4) Every voice on the recording is identified;

(5) The statement was not made in response to questioning calculated to lead the child to make a particular statement;

(6) The person conducting the interview of the child is available to testify at any court proceeding pursuant to this chapter; and

(7) The child shall be available to testify at any court proceeding pursuant to this chapter.

History of Section.
P.L. 1985, ch. 371, § 2; P.L. 2018, ch. 189, § 1; P.L. 2018, ch. 262, § 1.