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RI Criminal Defense Practice Manual CoverRHODE ISLAND CRIMINAL DEFENSE
A Practice Manual, 4th Edition
© John E. MacDonald



State v. DeLomba, 370 A.2d 1273 (R.I. 1977). Defendant may testify at his violation hearing without fear that his testimony will be used at trial. If the state chooses to pursue a violation hearing prior to the trial on the violating offense, defendant will be given use and derivative use immunity for any testimony he may give.

“…we hold henceforth the state must either hold the violation hearing first and give the alleged violator use and derivative use immunity for any testimony he may give, or postpone the violation hearing until after the criminal trial.” Id. at 1276.
While his testimony may not be used at trial, “such testimony and its fruits will be available to impeach or rebut clearly inconsistent testimony … [or be the basis of] perjury…” Id. at 1276.
State v. LeBlanc, 687 A.2d 456 (R.I. 1997). The trial justice has no obligation to inform the defendant of his immunity rights. That falls within the responsibilities of defense counsel.

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