Judicial Notice of Internet Evidence — Google Maps

Molina v. Reynolds, 2016 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 36976 (D.S.C. Jan. 25, 2016):

Petitioner's trial counsel testified that he did not personally drive from the Petitioner's workplace to the victim's home. [*22]  (Dkt. No. 14-4 at 119.) However, trial counsel did "review various estimations of time provided by...Google maps [or a similar application on the computer].10" (Id.) Many of the questions posed to trial counsel at the PCR hearing about his investigation of the timeline could not be recalled by trial counsel.

10   Trial counsel's reliance on Google Maps to determine the distance and travel time from Petitioner's work to the victim's house is not by itself ineffective assistance. "Courts commonly use internet mapping tools to take judicial notice of distance and geography." United States v. Sessa, No. 92-CR-351 ARR, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 7090, 2011 WL 256330, at *25 (E.D.N.Y. Jan. 25, 2011) aff'd, 711 F.3d 316 (2d Cir. 2013) (internal quotations omitted). Utilizing Google Maps to determine distances and travel times has been used by courts throughout the country. See, e.g., Hooper v. Clark, C/A No. S-08-1773-TJB, 2011 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 14805, 2011 WL 445510, at *8 (E.D. Cal. Feb. 8, 2011); Johnson v. Zepp, C/A No. 10-6810 CJC (AJW), 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 129730, 2010 WL 5116697, at *3 n. 2 (C.D.Cal. Oct.29, 2010) (using Google Maps to note Wasco State Prison is approximately 170 miles from federal courthouse located at 411 West Fourth Street, Santa Ana, California); Warwick v. Univ. of the Pac., C/A No. 08-03904 CW, 2010 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 67107, 2010 WL 2680817, at *3 n. 8 (N.D.Cal. July 6, 2010) (taking judicial notice Ukiah is approximately 100 miles from San Quentin, drive of approximately two hours, using Google Maps).

 

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