NJ Evidence Rule 615. Sequestration of Witnesses
At the request of a party or on the court's own motion, the court may, in accordance with law, enter an order sequestering witnesses.
HISTORY: Adopted September 15, 1992 to be effective July 1, 1993.
N.J.R.E. 615 provides simply that "[a]t the request of a party or on the court's own motion, the court may, in accordance with law, enter an order sequestering witnesses." Whether to order sequestration generally rests within the sound discretion of the trial court. State v. Miller, 299 N.J. Super. 387, 399 (App. Div.), certif. denied, 151 N.J. 464 (1997).
That discretion, however, must be exercised in light of the underlying policy of sequestering witnesses during a proceeding. "The reason for sequestration is to prevent prospective witnesses from hearing what the other witnesses detail in their evidence, for the less a witness hears of another's testimony the more likely is he to declare his own knowledge simply and unbiased." Ibid. (quoting State v. DiModica, 40 N.J. 404, 413 (1963)).
STATE v. TIMOTHY POPOVICH
405 N.J.Super. 324 (App. Div. 2009)