The Art of Witness Preparation
Legal Aid Society of Columbus August 9, 2019
On August 9, 2019, Tom presented to the Legal Aid Society of Columbus on the oft-overlooked topic of teaching witnesses to be witnesses. While most educational programming for lawyers focuses on what they must do in a courtroom, little guidance is provided for preparing witnesses, who are speaking in an alien environment and are often frightened and uncertain. Focusing on a witness’s role in persuading a jury, Tom described to attendees how to work with a witness to tell a story using organized, open-ended questions that allow the witness to comfortably tell their portion of the truth. He discussed preparing for direct and cross-examination, as well as the importance of not over-preparing.