Articles Tagged with cross examination

Elliott Wilcox shares another great post from his Winning Trial Advocacy Tips blog.  I know I rant and rave about how wonderful this blog is and I fear I may be accused of a man-crush on Elliott, a gentleman I have never spoken with, much less met.  But there is so much crap spread by those who think that they know something about trial preparation and trial advocacy that when someone actually shares something of value I feel compelled to applaud it – loud and often.  Elliott gets it and, more importantly, he shares it.

The latest cheer goes out for a post titled "How to Detect Non-Answers During Cross-Examination."  Here is an excerpt:

To become a quality cross-examiner, you must master the ability to critically listen to  witness’s answers and identify the weaknesses, fallacies, and evasions in their responses. 

Some of you are a little young to remember Irving Younger, the great trial advocacy teacher.  Professor Younger developed the "10 Commandments of Cross Examination" that were taught in trial advocacy programs across the country for many, many years.

Experienced trial lawyers would take issue with some of Younger’s  commandments, arguing that from time to time they should be ignored.  I agree, but that does not mean that they do not have value.  

Here is a copy for your reading pleasure.

 Winning Trial Advocacy Tips has a great post on the subject of whether you should ever call a witness a liar.

An excerpt:

Because we’re lawyers, we don’t have any problems believing that someone will take the stand and lie to us.  But jurors don’t think like that.  Maybe they’re more optimistic than we are, or maybe they don’t get lied to as often as we do, but most jurors I’ve met prefer to think that any witness who takes the stand is going to be honest with them.  (Yes, they even expect 10x convicted felons to tell the truth.)  If you attack a witness’s testimony by calling him a liar, you’re going to need toprove that he lied.  If you can’t prove that he lied, you face an uphill battle trying to get the jury to disbelieve his testimony.