Art of Listening

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ON QUALIFICATION: LINDBERG CASE ILLUSTRATION

Cross-Examining the Witness Who Qualifies the AnswerWe lawyers love to ask yes-no questions on cross-examination. Trial advocacy schools teach us to ask such questions, but witnesses often refuse to give us yes-or-no answers. The witness’s refusal to give us the answer we crave may stem from many reasons. Let us examine three of them: (1) [...]

ART OF LISTENING – PART 3

Art of Cross-Examination Requires Mastering the Art of ListeningA young man stood trial for grave robbery on the uncorroborated testimony of his former girlfriend. She testified she had met him approximately two weeks before Christmas, and had helped him commit the crime about a week after they met. The defendant’s Mom was listed as a [...]

ART OF LISTENING – PART 2

The Art of Cross-Examination Requires Mastering the Art of ListeningThe case began when a young lady whom we shall call Valerie used her CB radio to arrange a sexual rendezvous with a long distance truck driver. The trucker bragged to the defendant about his rendezvous with Valerie, and the defendant decided he, too, should have [...]

ART OF LISTENING

The Art of Cross-Examination Requires Active ListeningSherlock Holmes once complained to his colleague, Dr. Watson, that “You see, but you do not observe.” All too often we hear, but we do not listen. Sometimes our preconceptions about what the witness should say prevent us from hearing what the witness actually says. Sometimes we hear on [...]