There are a lot of preparations that have to be made before a trial begins. A big part of the groundwork that both the prosecutor and the defense attorney have to cover concerns the testimony that they may expect to hear from witnesses that are scheduled to testify during the proceedings. This process is known as “discovery.”
Most people who are called to testify in court can be described as lay witnesses. This means that they were present at the scene of the crime and saw what happened. An expert witness on the other hand is one who is recognized as a qualified specialist in his designated field of expertise. He will be called upon solely to give his professional opinion.
A character witness can be very important to the outcome of a jury trial. A defense attorney for example may introduce a character witness to expound on the good reputation of his client. When jury members hear about the good deeds that the defendant has performed for the community or what an outstanding family man he is known to be, they may be more inclined to believe in his innocence or at least that his actions were provoked in some way.
The more character witnesses the defense can produce, the better. They don’t claim to have seen what happened, just that they believe in the integrity of the defendant. Clergymen, family members and friendly neighbors of the defendant are often called as character witnesses.
The favorite adage about never asking a question that you don’t know the answer to definitely applies when it comes to preparing for what a defense attorney may hear from a witness on the stand. Prosecutors must provide the defense with a list of the witnesses they intend to call to testify. This presents the opportunity for the defense to find out what the prospective witnesses know about the crime in question and what they could say that may have anything to do with his client’s involvement.
Call the offices of the Parker Lawyers firm @ 303-841-9525 for any legal advice that you may need.