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12 04, 2015

COURTROOM ATTIRE FOR WOMEN

By |April 12th, 2015|Blog, Courtroom Lessons, Pretrial Tips, Trial Advocacy, Trial Tips|1 Comment

This is a subject about which I’m totally unqualified to render an opinion. I’m perfectly comfortable discussing a man’s trial uniform. A man’s trial proper courtroom attire normally is a dark suit, white or blue shirt, a tie that may have a pattern but not a loud one, brown or black shoes coordinated with the [...]

3 04, 2015

SHOOTING IN A TAVERN ON A SATURDAY NIGHT

By |April 3rd, 2015|Blog, Pretrial Tips, Trial Advocacy, Trial Advocacy: Assignments and Case Files, Trial Tips|0 Comments

Today’s headline in the local newspaper is “Jury awards $3.7M to estate of Munchbar shooting victim.” The newspaper account describes how a jury awarded the estate of the deceased $3.5 million with the tavern being held responsible for 75% and other participants in a fight leading up to the shooting being responsible for the remaining 25%.  The shooter [...]

4 03, 2015

IMPORTANT COURTHOUSE DOG MANUAL NOW AVAILABLE

By |March 4th, 2015|Blog, Courthouse Dogs, Pretrial Tips, Trial Tips|0 Comments

  An important manual concerning courthouse dogs has just become available to the public. Courthouse dogs provide emotional support for child and other vulnerable victims and witnesses in the legal system. In the not too distant past, vulnerable victims were given short shrift by the justice system. The manual recounts my experiences with children in [...]

20 02, 2014

DON’T LOSE THE JURY ON DIRECT EXAMINATION

By |February 20th, 2014|Direct Examination, Trial Lawyer Checklists, Trial Tips|3 Comments

The Engaging Direct ExaminationA poorly executed direct examination can lose the jury or bore them to snores. There are many ways to disengage the jury from your direct. Use the windshield wiper method (“What happened next?” “What happened next?”  And then what happened?”). While this may elicit the information, it can be as mind-numbing as [...]

13 12, 2013

KEY TO TRIAL ADVOCACY: “A HUMAN STORY BASED ON HUMAN VALUES”

By |December 13th, 2013|teaching techniques, Trial Tips|0 Comments

Each semester in my Comprehensive Trial Advocacy course, the law students go to court, observe a day in trial and write a report about what they saw and learned. Students select either federal, state or municipal court, and choose either a civil or criminal trial. J. Spencer Thorson’s  report on a criminal case trial highlights [...]

3 12, 2013

CLOSING ARGUMENT VISUALS

By |December 3rd, 2013|closing argument, teaching techniques, Trial Tips|1 Comment

Argument visuals are essential for a successful closing argument. For my Comprehensive Trial Advocacy class, the students are assigned the task of creating a visual for trial. Then, in their mock trial they utilize visuals to among other things bring their summations alive for the jury. For example, Grace Dyer, shown here, argued self defense [...]

29 08, 2013

MARTIN LUTHER KING’S ADVOCACY SKILLS

By |August 29th, 2013|Martin Luther King, oratory, persuasion, Trial Tips|0 Comments

None of the students in my Trial Advocacy class were alive at the time of the march on Washington. None of them had watched the Martin Luther King’s “I Have a Dream” speech in its entirety. So, Tuesday’s class was an opportunity to not only commemorate the march and the speech but also let them [...]

17 05, 2013

CRITICAL TRIAL ADVOCACY RULES: COURTROOM LESSON #5

By |May 17th, 2013|Civility, Courtroom Lessons, Pretrial Tips, Seattle University Law School, Trial Tips|2 Comments

Seeing is Believing No matter how much you stress certain principles of pretrial and trial practice in a law school trial advocacy class, the lessons don’t stick the way seeing them come live in a courtroom does. Students in my semester-long Comprehensive Trial Advocacy course go to court, watch a day of trial and write [...]

14 05, 2013

“PREPARATION AND CONFIDENCE REALLY SHOW”: COURTROOM LESSON #4

By |May 14th, 2013|Courtroom Lessons, Jury Selection, Pretrial Tips, Seattle University Law School, Trial Tips|0 Comments

Observing Pretrial Motions and Jury SelectionStudents in my semester-long Comprehensive Trial Advocacy course go to court, watch a day of trial and write a report about what they saw and learned. The students select from federal, state or municipal court, and they can choose either a civil or criminal share their observations. This article is [...]

13 05, 2013

CLIENT AS A WITNESS: COURTROOM LESSON #3

By |May 13th, 2013|Courtroom Lessons, Rumpole, Seattle University Law School, Trial Tips, Witness|3 Comments

“Our client was a complete disaster!”Sir John Mortimer’s fictitious Old Bailey barrister Horace Rumpole dreaded putting his client on the stand because somehow the client would manage to ruin the case. But, what about when the other side calls your supposedly thoroughly prepared client?Students in my semester-long Comprehensive Trial Advocacy course go to court, watch [...]

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