Court as a witness, tips anyone been there?

Man of Honour
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Court as a witness, Update!

Im a prosecution witness, crown court, hefty sentence could be dropped on the individual in the dock and presently incarcerated for the past 7 months on remand, cant discuss the case details so please dont ask.

how hard is it to keep your cool against a defense barrister, got to keep this together cant be loosing my temper here, but I hate to be called a liar when im just telling people what happened, so anyone been there before?
 
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Soldato
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Just remember they're only doing their job, they'll try and twist what you're saying and confuse you, make sure you go over everything before hand and look for anything that might be picked on, where you were standing at the time, your line of vision, your effect on the situation etc.

either way, don't panic and just pay attention ;)
 
Capodecina
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I haven't been a witness but I've seen plenty questioned in the six week trial I did a couple of years ago. The people who seemed to get annoyed and frustrated were the plaintiffs, not the witnesses. Just remember that the barristers are doing their job and don't get frustrated and het up, there's really no point.

They will ask you things you don't expect and they may accuse you of lying but don't take it personally. They will make a big deal of questioning whether you do know what you saw and how sure you are of it. If you're totally honest you don't have anything to worry about. If you're not sure about something, say you're not.
 
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Never been there but being in situations where you get grilled with every question under the sun (through work lol)

Simple tips

1) Erase all pre conceptions before going in, dont try and think of how it will go, just go in open minded
2) Listen carefully and look at them when speaking to them (This is a sign of confidence) Dont be scared to look them in the eye.
3) Answer directly and truthfully, dont try and fluff things out, just answer the question they have asked
4) Don't Panic, easy to say i know, but remember they are just doing there job and all they want is answers to questions.....thats it. It will go 10 times quicker than you expect and before you know it you will be done
5) Just be yourself :)

You will be fine im sure of it :D I hope i helped
 
Soldato
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2) Listen carefully and look at them when speaking to them (This is a sign of confidence) Dont be scared to look them in the eye.
Generally good advice however in this instance he'll be asked to address the jury, if you can talk towards the jury confidently it shows you in a better light.
3) Answer directly and truthfully, dont try and fluff things out, just answer the question they have asked
this is very good advice, the more you elaborate on things the more chance there is of a mistake, you're there telling the truth, if you can't answer something don't be afraid to ask them for clarification or say that you can't answer. Right there and then it will feel like letting anything go the way of the defence will ruin the case, but just be clear, honest and concise, there is nothing more you can do
 
Soldato
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Imagine the defense barrister naked.

Just do your best to answer the questions presented to honestly and clearly. You're not the one on trial :)
 
Soldato
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i have only been a witness once. some minor road accident.

sat outside the court waiting to be called, when a group of local youths sat next to me.

them: "what are you in for"

me: "giving evidence"

Them: "are you a ******* GRASS"

me: ":rolleyes:"

them: "ARE YOU, YOU ARE INIT, YOU ARE A ******* GRASS"

me: ":rolleyes::rolleyes::mad:"

them: "we are going to put your head through that ******** window"

needless to say they were not there to give evidence!
 
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Remember that you are there as a recording instrument, not to give an opinion.

What did you see ? What did you hear ? Was it dark ? Where you drunk ? Could you be mistaken ? Describe what you saw...precisely.

If you keep it in mind that you are a memory database that needs to be downloaded, not anyone that they care about, you should be fine. To quote Danny Kaye,
Get in. Get on with it. Get it over with. Get out.
 
Capodecina
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Could you be mistaken ?

This is basically what the defence barrister's case hinges on. They will spend a lot of time trying to make out that you don't know what you say you know. As long as you're completely sure of the facts you present, you'll be fine. Just don't say anything you're not totally sure of. If you're not sure of a fact, say you're not.
 
Soldato
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having been to court as a witness just stay cool and calm.

in my case the defence guy asked the same question in about 100 different ways to try and confuse me. dont be afraid to say i dont know and just take a second before you reply.

if the defence guy gets chopsy and all that jazz he will more than likely be told to wind his neck in. court is nothing like it is on the tv or in films.
 
Man of Honour
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My advice: don't turn up, as the man your evidence puts away will hunt you down and get Keyser Sose on your butt!

Not at all, if he ever comes near me it will be his last mistake and at the age he's at now if he gets the sentence thats possible he will be leaving his cage in a box, (its ok I do already know that sentences are difficult to predict and can be stupidly light) in before the dont expect much from the law statements.
 
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