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Don’t let dishonest witnesses derail your criminal defense

On Behalf of | Aug 13, 2020 | Criminal Defense |

If you or a loved one has been changed with a criminal offense, then you’re probably worried about what the future has in store. There’s a lot on the line in these matters, after all, including your freedom and your reputation. One of the most frustrating things about facing criminal charges is that prosecutors often hang their hats on the testimony of others.

Why Witness Testimony is Often Problematic

Simply put, many witnesses lack credibility. They misremember facts, mischaracterize things they’ve seen and heard, and sometimes they straight up lie. But a judge and jury aren’t going to recognize a witness’s untruthfulness unless you point it out. If you fail to do so, then the State might obtain its conviction on testimony that wouldn’t otherwise meet the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

What You Can Do To Protect Yourself

There are a number of ways that you can protect yourself from witnesses who lack credibility. A deposition, for example, can lock in their testimony prior to trial so that you can investigate their statements to discover any discrepancies. You can also use answers that are given at a deposition to contradict a witness’s testimony at trial. You can use other witnesses to counter another witness’s statements, too. Even one’s criminal history and bias can help you attack a witness’s credibility.

Why Does This Matter?

It matters because juries can give a lot of weight to a witness’s testimony. You don’t want that weight to be given to testimony that is harmful to you. Therefore, you need to do everything in your power to diminish the prosecution’s evidence, which includes attacking witness credibility when necessary. if you want to make sure that you do so to the best of your ability, then you might want to think about discussing your case with a criminal defense attorney who knows how to aggressively advocate in hopes of obtaining an acquittal or dismissed charges.