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Going to Trial, God Forbid! Artifacts, Trial Notebooks and Witness Prep Kirsty Davis April 2011.

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Presentation on theme: "Going to Trial, God Forbid! Artifacts, Trial Notebooks and Witness Prep Kirsty Davis April 2011."— Presentation transcript:

1 Going to Trial, God Forbid! Artifacts, Trial Notebooks and Witness Prep Kirsty Davis April 2011

2 MasterMemos What is a MasterMemo? A MasterMemo is a memo that combines all the interviews conducted of one witness into one document and organizes by topic. At the end of the MasterMemo you note all the things to be cautious of – contradictions, witness is crazy, etc… Purpose is to have all the info a witness could testify to in one document.

3 Witness Directs Once you create MasterMemos and decide to who to use as witness, create Directs for each witness. This is basically a role play scenario of how testimony could play out. Then the attorney can use this document when preparing the witness for testifying. Make any edits – remove questions that don’t want, change answers etc… NEVER show the witness this document – this could lead to it being discoverable, as something used to refresh the witnesses memory.

4 Trial Notebooks Binders on almost EVERYTHING. – Defense Lay Witnesses. – Experts – Defense & State. – State Witnesses. – Relevant Records. How many binders? – As many as you need! We can have as many as a couple of dozen binders if we go to trial.

5 Defense Lay Witnesses So what do you put in your binder? For every witness: – Interviews – Memos or MasterMemos. – Copy of the Direct. – Relevant records to them – school records, criminal/civil history records, medical records, psychiatric records, etc…

6 Experts – Defense & State So what do you put in your binder? For every expert: – Resume/CV – Articles they have published – Media – Prior testimony in this case – Prior testimony in other cases – Any reports

7 State Witnesses So what do you put in your binder? For every potential state witness: – We cover everyone subpoenaed. On first day of trial gave witness list, considerably smaller so changed binders. – Interviews – Memos or MasterMemos. – Relevant records to them – school records, criminal/civil history records, medical records, psychiatric records, etc… – Prior testimony. – If witness is a police officer – include any police report they are mentioned in as well as their personnel files.

8 Relevant Records So what do you put in your binder? Every record relevant to the client’s and the case: – Statements to law enforcement. – School records. – Medical records. – Autopsy report. – Crime scene photos/diagrams.

9 Artifacts Artifacts of a life: Photos, ribbons, art, yearbooks, certificates, trophies, etc. Demonstrative Evidence – Current photos of the client's ram shackled home, neighborhood, school, community, etc.; Videos; family trees Need to figure out in witness prep who can identify and exhibit the artifact.

10 Witness Prep


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