The Champion

June 2007 , Page 10 

Search the Champion Looking for something specific?

Preview of Member Only Content

For full access: login or Become a Member Join Now

Experts: How to Identify Them, Confront Them, and Keep Them Off the Stand

By Eric A. Vos

1. Why Use An Expert?

a. For the Jury’s Sake

Why use an expert? Because they win cases!1 Logically, given the rules which dictate attorney presentations to jurors, lawyers will not be allowed to give long-winded explanations or theories outside of opening and closing arguments. Even if an attorney could miraculously take the witness stand, this would be a rather poor substitute for expert testimony. Hence, most of the heavy lifting is best done by someone other than the defense attorney — the least liked person in the courtroom. An opening statement, a blistering cross-examination, and summation are the sum total of how most defense attorneys set forth theory. Yet, when an expert is employed aggressively, a theory can be impressively presented.

While Criminal Justice Act panel attorneys used experts in less than 2.5 percent of their 2004 cases, government attorneys used experts in 100 percent of their cases. This, of course, starts with the case agent who is

Want to read more?

The Champion archive is reserved for NACDL members.

NACDL members, please login to read the rest of this article.
login

Not a member? Join now.
Join Now
Or click here to see an overview of NACDL Member benefits.

See what NACDL members say about us.

To read the current issue of The Champion in its entirety, click here.

  • Media inquiries: Contact NACDL's Director of Public Affairs & Communications Ivan J. Dominguez at 202-465-7662 or idominguez@nacdl.org
  • Academic Requests: Full articles of The Champion Magazine are available for academic and research purposes in the WestLaw and LexisNexis databases.

In This Section

Advertisement Advertise with Us
ad