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Comparison definition. It is well settled that there is no valid distinction between the probative force of direct and of circumstantial evidence. Any fact may be established by circumstantial evidence as sufficiently and completely as by positive, direct evidence. State v. Davis, 108 N.H. 45, 226 A.2d 873 (1967); State v. Dancyger, 29 N.J. 76, 148 A.2d 155 (1959); State v. Goodhart, 112 Vt. 154, 22 A.2d 151 (1941); 3 Wharton, Criminal Evidence (12th ed. 1955) § 980 at 472-73. Testing the sufficiency of mixed evidence to support a finding of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt requires the making of no distinction between direct evidence of a fact and evidence of circumstances from which the existence of a fact may be inferred. No greater degree of certainty is required when the evidence is circumstantial than when it is direct. In either case the trier of fact must be convinced beyond a reasonable doubt of the guilt of the accused. Nichols v. State, 5 Md. App. 340, 247 A.2d 722 (1968). ''A conclusion of guilt requires proof beyond a reasonable doubt, and proof to that extent is proof which precludes every reasonable hypothesis except that which it tends ...

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