Irving Younger

Home/Irving Younger

IRVING YOUNGER – SAGE OF CROSS-EXAMINATION

Watch Irving Younger Discuss the Ten Commandments of CrossWhenever we get to the subject of cross-examination in my law school class and I (Bob) mention Professor Irving Younger the students give me blank stares. None of them seem to have heard anything at all about Professor Younger or his famous Ten Commandments of Cross-Examination. Younger [...]

GREAT ADVICE ON CROSS-EXAMINATION REPEATED

 Excellent advice on cross-examination bears repeating. Thus, this piece repeats Michael Tigar’s advice (Examining Witnesses) that he borrowed from Terry McCarthy. The subject is how to commence cross-examination in a strong fashion, which we recently discussed here.  Tigar (pictured) states that:To begin (cross-examination) strong you must choose an area in which the witness will agree [...]

3rd ROOKIE MISTAKE OF CROSS-EXAMINATION: REPEATING THE DIRECT

Irving Younger’s 7th CommandmentIt is probably the most common rookie mistake - the cross-examiner has the witness repeat their direct examination. Question: “On direct examination you told this jury that . . .” The error is grievous. It violates Irving Younger’s 7th commandment: “Don't allow the witness to repeat his direct testimony.” Younger’s commandment directs [...]

CROSS-EXAMINING THE EYEWITNESS

Violating the CommandmentsA long time ago in a courtroom far away a young defense attorney whom we shall call Hamilton Mason defended a man named Johnny Lee Johnson on a charge of robbery. The prosecution called its first witness Victor Victim, an older gentleman who wore glasses with incredibly thick lenses. Victor gave a vivid [...]

4TH COMMANDMENT OF CROSS-EXAMINATION

Be Prepared. Do Not Ask a Question to Which You Do Not Know the Answer.THE 4TH COMMANDMENTIrving Younger promulgated the 10 Commandments of cross-examination, and those commandments have guided cross-examiners for decades. But, do they make sense? Should they be Commandments or merely Guidelines? Let’s examine the 4th Commandment: Be prepared. Do not ask a [...]

KNOWING WHEN TO BREAK THE RULES OF CROSS-EXAMINATION

A Shot-in-the-Dark You could call it a locked-room murder but not a locked-room mystery. The murderers were locked in the room with their victim. Two inmates contrived to get themselves locked into the same cell with another inmate and proceeded to strangle him with a garrote. When a correctional officer came down the row of [...]

IRVING YOUNGER’S TEN COMMANDMENTS REVISITED

Or Better Yet – Ten Cross-Examination GuidelinesThe late, great Professor Irving Younger (whose CLE videotapes are still gems and worth viewing) gave us the ten commandments of cross-examination. He could talk all day about them, using memorable and humorous illustrations. He threatened to haunt his listeners if they ever violated one his ten commandments. These [...]