Thursday, May 1, 2014


Coming soon - June 2, 2014, Seattle University Law School and the American College of Trial Lawyers proudly begin the inaugural Advanced Trial Advocacy Institute (ATAI). This CLE program offers winning trial advocacy strategies and skills from preparation through closing argument. The Institute is designed to be the most comprehensive trial advocacy training program in Washington. 
31.5 CLE credits pending

The course will be taught by an outstanding faculty of over 20 accomplished trial lawyers, judges and communication specialists, including: Amy Forbis (Pres. American Board of Trial Advocates); Thomas Lemly (Pres. Wa. State Committee of American College of Trial Lawyers); Karen Koehler; Jeffrey Tilden; Lisa Marchese; Judge John Erlick; and Craig Smith (Senior Trial Consultant, Prolumina – Litigation Strategies).

Benefits of this week-long course:
  *   Preparing and trying a case with guidance and supervision.
  *   Seasoned trial attorneys, as well as communication specialists,
       provide feedback on your performances.
  *   One-on-one video review of your presentation.
  *   Develop effective courtroom communication techniques.
  *   Understand today’s visual trial technology.
  *   In-depth discussion on trial ethics and avoiding pitfalls.

The course is designed for new lawyers who are seeking a firm foundation in the finest trial skills through more experienced trial lawyers who want to take their skills to a higher level.

Click Here to REGISTER for this Event.

The program will be held at Seattle University School of Law

Click for  the schedule and click here for our faculty. Advanced Trial Advocacy Institute
For questions, contact us at  or (206) 398-4233.

Thursday, April 10, 2014


If you are unprepared to argue a motion, it shows. This was the take away that a significant number of my Seattle University law students noted in their reports on watching motions arguments in both state and federal court. I require that my Comprehensive Pretrial students attend a motion hearing and then write a report about what they observed. While they are free to write about whatever takes their fancy, this semester’s predominant theme was the importance of being prepared. Motion preparation is discussed at length in Pretrial Advocacy: Planning, Analysisand Strategy, 4th Edition. 

Below are some excerpts from their reports which drive home the point that a lack of preparation is apparent to not only the court but onlookers.

Pierce County Superior Court Civil and 
Criminal Motion Calendar – Student C. B.

C. B. attended a motion calendar for both civil and criminal matters, and he observed:

“I learned that it is obvious if you are not prepared to be before the court.  A few attorneys stumbled through folders while the court patiently waited for them to find what they were looking for.  I was surprised at how many times I heard things like, “Well, I just received a copy of the document a few days ago and so I haven’t exactly had time to look it over.”  I can’t tell if this goes to a lack of preparation, or the reality of the profession (or maybe both).”

United States District Court – Student N. D.

Student N.D. observed a motion for declaratory judgment concerning whether the case should be heard in federal or state court. One of the lessons that N. D. took away from the experience was the following:

“. . . if I ever plan on arguing a motion I need to be fully prepared and have a complete understanding of my case and all of its intricacies. If you are unable to answer certain questions about your case, it will downgrade the argument you are presenting even if it is on a completely different matter within the case.”

N. D. provided this example:

“When Judge X asked simple questions to the Y attorney about why federal court would be better and more efficient for his client over that of state court, the attorney, knowing his answer would be insufficient, tried to answer the questions in a round-about way by bringing up his argument for summary judgment. This delayed the entire process and frustrated Judge X as well as the opposing counsel. The Y attorney looked silly and unprepared.”

King County Superior Court – Student R. S.

Student R. S. watched the State’s motion to compel fingerprints from the defendant who was charged with Failure to Register as a Sex Offender. R. S. noted:

“The State’s performance was excellent.  The prosecutor was confident, spoke well before the judge, and had answers for every question received.  The prosecutor maintained a theme of a sex offender who persistently refused to register, despite state law, and who would continue to do so unless specific matters were taken.  The Defender, however, did not appear as prepared, spoke in a very low voice, and lacked the confidence the prosecutor had; yet, her performance was good. . .”

Another King County Superior Court Observation – Student M. T.

While some motion-observations taught the law student that the lack of preparation is obvious, other observations provided the students with opportunities to watch well prepared lawyers in action. Student M. T.’s report noted that the lawyers were well prepared but not as well prepared as others she was familiar with, as follows:

“These particular attorneys were adequately prepared to argue. They were timely, had their notes prepared, and seemed to have their arguments thought out ahead of time. However, what won out in the end was the ability to cite quickly to relevant arguments and create holes in the opponent’s case. If anything, I believe that the oral arguments we practice at school are better prepared and that we are more familiar with the cases than the attorneys that I observed. This is understandable, considering that attorneys have a full caseload in practice whereas we are given an entire semester to become familiar with the case at hand.”

When law students get out of the classroom and into the courtroom to observe trial lawyers at work, they invariably come away with valuable lessons that will stick with them as they head out into their legal careers. The lessons that preparation is critical to appearing professional and to a successful argument is an invaluable one.

Monday, April 7, 2014


When teaching pretrial or trial advocacy, it is important to get the law students out of the classroom to experience the real life of a trial lawyer. For my Comprehensive Pretrial Advocacy course, the students have a minimum of three experiences outside the classroom. First, we go to the scene – the Garage tavern (the class picture taken during the recent visit) where the shooting took place, which led to both criminal murder charges and the complaint for wrongful death. We use the cases in the Pretrial Advocacy book throughout the course.

The go-to-the-scene outing focuses on two teaching points: go to the scene because it gives the trial lawyer a firmer understanding of events that gave rise to the law suit, and go to the scene as soon as possible because the scene may be altered over time.

The other two experiences get them out of the classroom and into a courtroom. The second occurs when they appear before a Superior Court Judge to argue a motion (pictured below). This experience of appearing before a real Judge has a profound impact on the students. The motion argument constitutes a good share of their grade and is the equivalent of a final examination. The effect on them is apparent in the way they carefully prepare and effectively deliver their arguments. Not only does this opportunity often result in students expressing a desire to make a career of trial work but also gives them judicial feedback on how to improve.

Third, the students are required to go to court, observe a motion or motions calendar and write a report about their experiences. The students invariably praise this courthouse visit. For instance, this semester’s reports contained these comments, among many others:

·         “All in all a valuable learning experience.”
·         “I was able to leave the courtroom that afternoon with three very important takeaways.”
·         “It was comforting to see what we will be doing in the future and know that we will be able to do it well with hard work and dedication.”

As a pretrial and trial advocacy instructor, it is gratifying to read the students’ reports of their observations and to learn how being out of the classroom and in the courtroom can be such a worthwhile learning experience for them. This semester a theme ran through several of their papers relating to preparation for arguing a motion. In near future, I’ll share those students’ observations here.

Monday, March 24, 2014


Advancing Justice

For the past week, I have been in Pristina, Kosovo teaching trial advocacy. The U.S. Department of Justice offered this advocacy training as part of Kosovo’s effort to implement the rule of law. Kosovo is the world’s newest nation, having declared its independence in 2008. The population of Kosovo is approximately 1.8 million.

The people of Kosovo have great affection for Americans, and they were unfailingly gracious to us.  The U.S. involvement in bringing an end to the Kosovo war is a reason for this attitude, and their appreciation is evident with a statue of Bill Clinton on Bill Clinton Boulevard and American flags flying throughout the city.   

Attendees at the course were Victim Advocates. Victim Advocates in Kosovo have a four-year undergraduate degree in the law. Under the new Kosovo Criminal Procedure Code (effective January 1, 2013), they have a new active role in prosecutions. Their new responsibilities include augmenting the prosecution’s case and pursuing restitution and compensation on behalf of victims.

The attendees, like the vast majority of the population of Kosovo, were Albanian. One spoke Bosnian and the rest Albanian. The training was done with simultaneous translations.

The trial advocacy courses consisted of training two groups in two separate sessions back to back. Each training session lasted two and a half days. During the sessions, the attendees learned about prosecuting a case from opening statement through closing argument. Jury selection was not discussed because cases are tried either to a single judge or a three-judge panel depending upon the nature of the crime. The Kosovo criminal justice system is evolving. Besides not providing jury trials, there are many other differences from our criminal just system. Another example is that plea bargaining was not been possible in the past, and every case went to trial.

My co-trainers - Chuck Ex and Scott Thorley (Scott is pictured above) - and I lectured, demonstrated how to perform different parts of trial, such as give an opening statement, and worked with the attendees in workshops as they delivered opening statements and closing argument as well as conducted direct and cross-examinations. The criminal case fact pattern that they used is the one provided in Trial Advocacy: Assignments and Case Files, 2nd Edition

A highpoint of the week was attending an event at theUnited States Ambassador’s residence that honored Kosovo’s Forum of Women Judges and Prosecutors. Not only is our Ambassador Tracey Jacobsen a woman but so it the President of Kosovo Atifete Jahjaga. The President is an ex-police chief and only 38 years old. Pictured above are Vlora Citaku (Minister of European Integration of the Republic of Kosovo), Chuck Ex, the President, me and my wife. 

My colleagues pictured below  from left to right are: Michelle Lakomy (Resident Legal Advisor, Pristina, Kosovo) who was in charge of the program, Chuck Ex (Program Director for OPDAT – Office of Prosecutorial Development, Assistance and Training), Benina Kusari (Legal Specialist), me, Scott Thorley (Assistant United States Attorney in Salt Lake City, Utah), and Elisa Thana (Victim/Witness Advocacy Program Manager).

It was an honor to be a part of this ongoing endeavor to improve the skills of the Victim Advocates and to put into practice the rule of law in Kosovo.

Thursday, February 20, 2014


The Engaging Direct Examination

A 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 watching your windshield wiper go back and forth. Call an expert who constantly speaks in technical terms that jurors can’t understand. Allow a dull, monotone voiced witness to drone on, thus sucking the oxygen out of the courtroom. Have the witness never once look at the jury. Only elicit words, words and more words from the witness.


Exhibits and Demonstrations: Break up the direct examination by spacing out the introduction of exhibits. This will enhance the presentation, change its pace and break up the testimony so that the jurors are not just listening to words. Most importantly your jury will have a significant number of predominantly visual learners. A demonstration will enliven the presentation and bring reality into the courtroom.

Variations in the Questioning: How you ask questions can keep the jurors’ interest. Vary tone of voice and volume. Embrace courtroom silence. If the witness gives a particularly good answer, remain silent and let the answer sink in. Change how the questions are phrased (not “What happened next?” repeated). Shift the tense from past to present tense to bring the action or scene to life. For instance: “When you enter the intersection, tell us what you see on your right?”

Directions: Keep the jury informed of where you are, where you are going and what they have heard. You need not tell a linear story during the direct. You can flash forward in time, flash back in time and even freeze on a subject or scene. But, wherever you go, the jury should not get lost. This can be accomplished with declarative sentences, such as, “Now, let’s move ahead to when. . .” Or, freezing on a subject, “Now, let’s discuss the scaffold.” While these are not questions, they normally are never objected to because people in the courtroom want to follow the testimony. Juror attention can be directed to what they have heard by using the looping technique, which involves incorporating the witness’s answer into the next question. For example, the witness answers, “I put on the brake,” and the next question is “When you put on the brake, what happened next?”  Looping repeats and highlights the testimony, and thus directs the jurors’ attention to the answer.

Energy: An antidote to counteract the poison of a dull direct is your energy. Ask questions with enthusiasm, informing the jurors that you want to know the answer. Sound interested in the answer. Energetically ask questions that the jury would want answered.

Witness Speaks to the Jurors: A common mistake on direct examination is to have the witness speak to the lawyer when answering questions. The only people in the courtroom who matter for the witness are the jurors because they are the fact finders. The jurors are the people to whom the witness should speak. During witness preparation, you can tell this to the witness and explain that the jury’s only job is to find out what happened. They are like the witness’s neighbors and have no axe to grind. They want to find what is true. Therefore, the witness should look at them and speak to them. If the court permits, counsel should stand behind the far end of the jury box away from the witness so that the witness is looking across the jurors towards counsel. During preparation, inform the witness that this placement is a cue to the witness to look at the jurors. Counsel can explain the positioning to the jurors with the first witness: “Mr. ____, I’m standing back here so that you will speak up so juror number 6 here can hear you.” This positioning results in the spotlight being on the witness and the jury looking at the witness as opposed to looking at the lawyer who asks the question and then to the answering witness as though the jurors were watching a tennis match.  If necessary because the witness looks away from the jurors, you can nudge the witness’s eyes back to them by saying, “Could you tell the jury. . .”

Direct examination provides the building blocks for the case, and therefore it is critical that the jury be engrossed during the examination. Additional practice pointers are provided in Trial Advocacy: Planning, Analysis and Strategy, 3rdEdition.

Monday, February 17, 2014


Seattle University launches Advanced Trial Advocacy Institute

Marilyn Berger and I have developed and chair this week-long (June 2-6, 2014) Advanced Trial Advocacy Institute. The Institute offers a proven conceptual approach to trial practice combined with premier trial principles and strategies for every phase of trial from preparation through closing argument. During the course the best of the best trial lawyers and faculty will provide lectures and demonstrations of successful trial skills.

Above all, course attendees will prepare and try a case, including conducting jury selection, presenting opening statement and closing argument and examining expert and lay witnesses. Seasoned and skilled trial attorneys as well as communication specialists will provide feedback and pointers on your performances. Also, your presentations will be videoed so that you can benefit from a one-on-one video review with a faculty member.  (30.5 general CLE credits plus 1.0 ethics credits pending)
Who Should Attend
The course is designed for both fledgling practicing lawyers, who are seeking a firm foundation of the finest trial skills through experienced trial lawyers, who want to take their skills to a higher level. The course is also open to a few select law students who have completed their second year and have taken an Evidence course. Seattle University Law Students will receive two academic credits for successfully completing the course.
Topics to be Addressed Include:
·         Developing Case Theories, Themes and Trial Strategies
·         Courtroom Communication Techniques
·         Trial Preparation and Planning
·         Effective Jury Selection
·         Convincing Opening Statement
·         Conducting a Compelling Direct Examination
·         Presenting and Attacking Expert Testimony
·         Creating Dynamic Trial Visuals
·         Today's Courtroom Technology
·         Trial Ethics and Avoiding Pitfalls
·         Impeachment and Concession Cross-Examination
·         Persuasive Closing Argument
Sponsors and Scholarships
The American College of Trial Lawyers sponsors the Seattle University Advanced Trial Advocacy Institute.  Additionally, the American College of Trial Lawyers is providing four scholarships for public or public interest advocates.  To receive additional information regarding applying for one of the four scholarships please email your CV along with a request for more information to:

Saturday, December 14, 2013


Ann Murphy’s Gift to Evidence Professors

Professor Ann Murphy (pictured here) has given professors who teach evidence and trial advocacy a spectacular gift – a collection of photographs and videos that will enliven any evidence class presentation. Professor Murphy, who teaches evidence at Gonzaga Law School and whom I met last summer when she was a visiting professor at Seattle University, compiled the materials into a list in the order of the evidence rules (relevance through sentencing with Confrontation Clause material thrown in for full measure). This was her monumental labor of love when she was operating as she describes it as “my People Magazine Professor of Evidence at its full throttle.”

When I contacted her about sharing her Evidence Class Videos, she graciously said yes. With thanks to Ann Murphy, here is the Gold Mine for Evidence Professors:

                    ANN MURPHY’S EVIDENCE CLASS VIDEOS (some are photographs)
Compiled by Professor Ann Murphy, Gonzaga University School of Law

Rule 401Relevance
*U.S. v. Johnny Reid Edwards (former presidential candidate) – Christina Reynolds, friend of Elizabeth Edwards (John Edwards’ late wife) called to the stand to testify about Elizabeth’s knowledge of John Edwards’ affair. (good – Edwards was charged with violating campaign finance laws, conspiracy to do so, and false statements – is this witness’s testimony relevant)
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson – after arrested for the murder of his 3rd wife (4th wife is missing), he is exchanging “love letters” with women from jail – have to suffer through Nancy Grace, but great to show relevance (or lack thereof) -

Rule 403 – Prejudicial effect
*Massachusetts v. Aaron Hernandez - “selfie” – photo, not video (very good)

*U.S. v. Karl Thompson (Police Officer charged with excessive force in killing of Otto Zehm – who was mentally disabled)
“All I wanted was a snickers bar” – last words of victim (very good)
(may use also for 401 Relevance – the fact that Zehm was innocent of any crime; and 606(b)(2) – extraneous influence – the “ticker” on the television set that jurors may have seen).
*State of Florida v. Casey Anthony – scull superimposed on daughter’s face (very good)  (the latter part of the video is on fast forward and not usable – after second 57)
And (Today show discussion of this and parts from the trial) (very good)
*Florida v. George Zimmerman – photos of and texts from Trayvon Martin (not a video) (good)–
*U.S. v. Gilberto Valle (“the Cannibal Cop”) – very good – images that made jurors shift in their seats.
* State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias – photo of severe neck wound. Prosecutor Juan Martinez is questioning a former girlfriend of Travis Alexander (the victim) – and basically asking if she would have done something like this – big objection by Defense counsel. YouTube video has come comments typed on it by the person who posted the video.
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson – death scene photo of Kathleen Savio – does not seem too gruesome.

*U.S. v. Ronald William Brown – convicted of receipt & possession of child pornography – the first clip is from “Young Turks” – a liberal website (so some of you may not want to play it in class) – it shows his super creepy puppet show. He was a Christian puppeteer.
*Colorado v. James Holmes (Aurora theatre shooting) - 3D reconstruction of Aurora theatre shooting – could also use for Authentication.
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson – “cold hearted” reaction to death of 3rd wife Kathleen Savio
*Pretty amazing video of English police officer Dan Pascoe being hit by a stolen car, and then the chase – video is half-way down the page (could use for Authentication too)
*U.S. v. Roger Clemens – Judge declared a mistrial after prosecution showed a video that referred to evidence that had previously been ruled inadmissible -
*State of Florida v. Casey Anthony – testimony about Casey Anthony’s daughter’s remains -
*Commonwealth of Massachusetts v. Edward Fleury – Fleury charged with involuntary manslaughter – he ran a gun demonstration and 8-year old Christopher shot himself in the head with an Uzi. Issue was whether jury would see the shot – very good.
*Mouse in a Can – of Monster Energy Drink

Rule 404 – Character
*Florida v. George Zimmerman – Is the Defendant trashing Trayvon Martin? (see video on the left-hand side of this news story (very good) –
*Pennsylvania v. Arthur (AB) Schimer – The “Sinister Minister” - accused of murdering his second wife Betty – State allowed to bring in evidence that his first wife (Jewel) died of blunt force trauma – also allowed to bring in porn on his computer and his affairs. (beginning at about 1:18 – great)
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – Character Witnesses for Dr. Murray
*State of Washington v. Kevin Coe (the “South Hill Rapist”) – “signature crime” – see minute 4 to minute 6:35. This entire case is fascinating - - his mother arrested for trying to arrange hits on the judge and prosecutor and State Supreme Court reverses – no hypnotically-refreshed recollection.
*Character Witness – from the old T.V. show “The Odd Couple” – excellent -

Rule 412 – Rape Shield Law
*Ohio v. Trent Mays and Ma’lik Richmond (Steubenville Rape Case) - see printed story (about ½ of the way down) – Judge allowed two of the victim’s “former best friends” to testify she had a reputation as a liar, but did not allow further evidence about her sexual history.
Also – Evidence via Facebook, Twitter, and Text Messages -

Rule 501 - Privileges
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson – Reverend Neil Schori allowed to testify about what Drew Peterson’s 4th wife Stacy (who went missing) told him at a counseling session. No Clergy-Penitent Privilege as not raised. He was allowed to testify about what Stacy told him about what she saw the night Drew’s 3rd wife died, but not what Drew said to her (Marital Privilege). Hearsay exception is Statement Against Interest. (very good)
*Illinois v. Drew PetersonDefense called Stacy Peterson’s (4th wife who disappeared) attorney – she was not there to assert attorney-client privilege (she disappeared) – but Defense opened the door to hearsay statements of Stacy.
*Executive Privilege – Daily Show (comedy) – a little racy language

Rule 606 – Jurors
*Jackson v. AEG, Live jurors – reasons for finding for the Defendant in the case - may comment on deliberations but are not required to do so (O.K.)
*U.S. v. James J. Bulger (“Whitey Bulger – Irish Gangster in Boston) – juror gave interviews after the verdict of guilty, but she’s a bit of a nut (IMHO) -

Rule 608 – Impeachment
*U.S. v. Barry Lamar Bonds – “ex-mistress” Kimberly Bell testifies – cross gets a bit confrontational – very good

Rule 609 – Impeachment by Evidence of a Criminal Conviction
*State of Wisconsin v. Mark Jensen – tried for murdering his wife – testimony of a “jailhouse snitch.” This case is also good for the Confrontation Clause.

Rule 611(a)Control by Court
*People of the State of California v. Phillip Spector – “Benchslap” of Defense attorney Bruce Cutler (excellent)

Rule 611 – Witnesses (in general)
* Eyewitness ID (a bit long – 6 minutes, but very good – eyewitness identification – faulty)
*Eyewitnesses – this is a video done by our late colleague Margaret Berger – excellent -
*U.S. v. Jeffrey R. MacDonald – this case has been the subject for a movie (Fatal Vision) and a book by Errol Morris (A Wilderness of Errors) – witness told story, then was silent on the stand (whole video is good, but long – you can begin at minute 4:45)

*North Carolina v. Kenan Gay (former UNC football player and law student) – middle of video is eyewitness – but also owner of the bar (bias?)
For more on what different witnesses said (not a video) - (911 call on right-hand side of story)
*New York v. DiGuglielmo (defending father, or murder?) – witness indicated he was pressured by the police – begin at about minute 2:30 -
*North Carolina v. Michael Peterson (convicted of killing his wife Kathleen – the subject of the documentary “The Staircase” – and he had his conviction reversed – awaiting new trial) – SBI Agent Duane Deaver lied about his qualifications – he provided the bloodstain analysis (good) -

Rule 611Direct Examination
* State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias - Taking the “sting” out – ask on Direct before it will be asked on Cross (good) – minute 18:45 through 27:30.
* State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias – Again, taking the “sting” out – ask on Direct before it will be asked on Cross (excellent) – beginning at about minute 41 (note that part of the sound is off – during bench conferences).
*State of Florida v. John Goodman (Polo Tycoon) – three witnesses featured – two for the Defense and one for the State

*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – Direct of body guard who was the first on the scene at the death of Michael Jackson - excellent
*Florida v. Casey Anthony – really nice to show prosecution case and defense case – from start to finish – a number of witnesses featured (a little long, but great) -
*Florida v. Casey Anthony – Shows direct examination of an expert – a forensic entomologist (testifies about decomposition of Casey Anthony’s daughter – good -
*Utah v. Martin MacNeill – Direct of Rachel MacNeill, daughter of Martin MacNeill – very good -

Rule 611 – Cross Examination
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – biggest jerk on cross-examination (great)
*State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias – cross of domestic violence expert called by the Defense – it gets interesting when the Prosecutor argues with the witness and then later revers to a talk she gave on Snow White – there is a relevance objection to that testimony (excellent) – Cross begins at minute 29:40. Some back and forth with witness at minutes 35 and 39, and reference to Snow White at minutes 48 and 56.
*State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias – impeachment (good)

*State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias – cross-examination (bits and pieces of it – confrontational between Prosecutor and Defendant) (good)
*State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias – cross-examination – I believe over the top – objections about being argumentative (good). How NOT to do a cross examination?
* State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias – cross-examination (good) – defendant is crying, but admits to killing the victim. (from the beginning of the video)
*State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias – cross-examination – Rule 611(c) Leading Questions – Argumentative (very good)
(see: at 30 seconds to minute 3; then minute 4:30 to minute 16)
*California v. Orenthal James (OJ)  Simpson – Cross-examination of a police officer by F. Lee Bailey (excellent)
*Utah v. Martin MacNeill – cross of defendant’s oldest daughter (Rachel) beginning at minute 1:28 (prior inconsistent statement and bipolar diagnosis)
*Utah v. Martin MacNeill – cross of defendant’s second-oldest daughter (Alexis) from minute 13 to minute 28 (prior inconsistent statement and issues with her medical school application)
*U.S. v. Johnny Reid Edwards (former presidential candidate) – “star witness” Andrew Young not credible
*U.S. v. Johnny Reid Edwards – witness is Cheri Young, Andrew Young’s wife- great for cross exam
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – “star” witness for the Defense held in contempt – Prosecutor David Walgren is one of the best attorneys I’ve ever seen – this is described as “combative” – (or “combustive” hmmm) – excellent -
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – this is just so fantastic – hostile witness (Nicole Alvarez) – analysis done by the “Young Turks” – it is hilarious, but a bit racy at the end.
*Florida v. Casey Anthony – some nice cross-examination beginning at minute 1:52 – also good for a Rule 403 issue (bones) at the end of the video -
*Florida v. Casey Anthony - Nice cross and then re-direct (of an expert) – very good -

*Direct Examination and Cross Examination
*State v. Hemy Neuman - Impeachment of Andrea Sneiderman – murder of her husband by her boss – she was later charged and convicted of perjury (State v. Sneiderman) (minute 22 to minute 27:44)

Rule 701 – Lay Witness - Opinion
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson – very short – Defense called Drew’s son – he said he’d “never seen anyone so sad”
*State of Florida v. John Goodman – bartender testifies he did not appear intoxicated
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – Defense questioning of Paul Gongaware of AEG, Live - good

Rule 702 – Experts
*Post Mortem – The Death Investigation Crisis in America (Frontline, NPR, ProPublica) (excellent) - (from the beginning up to minute 13:03) – the entire investigation is excellent, but it is 60 minutes.
*The Real CSI (Frontline and ProPublica) (excellent) - (from the beginning to minute 13 – or if you want more on cognitive bias, go to minute 16) or (minute 28 to minute 34 (the Casey Anthony trial – smell in a can) - the entire investigation is excellent, but it is 58 minutes.
*Texas v. Cameron Todd Willingham – executed – bad forensic science of a fire. Excellent –
*Florida v. Casey Anthony – experts gave conflicting testimony and a corpse-sniffing dog (excellent) (up to minute 3:05 – or the entire interview is also good)
*Indiana v. David Camm – two explanations for blood spatter (excellent). Camm was convicted twice – the convictions were overturned twice and on October 24, 2013 he was found not guilty in the third trial and released.
* Jackson v. AEG, Live Michael Jackson severely addicted to prescription drugs- (no expert testimony in this clip – case was not televised – but good coverage on the news) (very good)
*Marissa Tomai in My Cousin Vinnie – speaking about cars and tire tracks (very good)
*Kansas v. Brett Seacat – expert on hormone taken by wife and handwriting expert (good)
*Utah v. Martin MacNeill – whether blood draw meets Frye standard – this clip indicates that the Judge is disallowing the evidence, but actually he reserved his ruling asking for a better foundation (very good, except Nancy Grace)
*Pennsylvania v. Arthur (AB) Schimer The “Sinister Minister” – great computer animation accident reconstruction. (beginning at about 2:09 – excellent)
*Eyewitness problems (great one)
*Expert Witness on Suggestibility – “mousetrap study” – (from “Crime and Punishment” – from actual trials) – excellent

*Problems with Expert Witness (Dr. Steven Hayne – Mississippi)
and (Mississippi Supreme Court finds Hayne’s work (and the work of another prosecution expert) “woefully short of the requirements for admissibility).
*Problems with Expert Witness (Annie Dookhan – Massachusetts)
*”Wind Turbine Syndrome” – The Colbert Report (comedy)
*Florida v. George Zimmerman – forensic analysis of 911 call – ultimately the Judge did not allow expert analysis on this issue (good) -
*Blood Spatter – from Dexter television show
*Arizona v. Ray Krone (the “snaggletooth killer”) – two convictions for murder based upon bite mark evidence – DNA later exonerated him (excellent)
*California v. Brandon McInerney – “gay panic defense”
*Handwriting analysis – does not seem this would pass Daubert or Frye – Not a video – photos – and weird.

*Civil case – Deposition of an Expert who seems not able to apply the math he used – and Accident Reconstructionist – rather humorous.
*Florida v. Casey Anthony – “talking heads” after the verdict of not guilty – good discussion of odd expert witness evidence (the “smell of death”) and the jury. A bit long and attorney Linda Kenney Baden had been on the Defense team, so it is a bit one sided.
*Example of part of the Standard Field Sobriety Test – the HGN test (Horizontal Gaze Nystagmus) – interesting -

704 – Experts – Opinion on an Ultimate Issue
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – Direct Exam of an Expert – see at minute beginning 37 and continuing – the “ultimate issue” question is at minute 40 (excellent)
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – Direct and Cross Exam of Experts – see at minute beginning 3:21 through about 6:45 (excellent – but slightly chopped up)
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – Direct of Expert–excellent – six “extreme deviations from the standard of care” – evidence of “gross negligence.”

Rule 801 – Hearsay
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson - Juror explains how hearsay testimony was critical to verdict.

801(d)(1) – Declarant Witness’s Prior Statement
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray – Conrad Murray’s girlfriend Nicole Alvarez - excellent
*U.S. v. Karl Thompson – Police officer charged in beating of man (officer not charged with murder – only with excessive force and lying) (up to about minute 1:30 – reference to Officer Moses)

801(d)(2) – An Opposing Party’s Statement – Not Hearsay
*Jackson v. AEG, Live – examination of co-CEO of AEG, Live Paul Gongaware – email (very good)
*California v. Dr. Conrad Murray (and talking about Jackson v. AEG, Live) (about 4 minutes – lots of statements of party opponents and also a bit of a 911 call) (good) Also good statements of Jackson – undoubtedly not for truth of the matter asserted.
*Accidental 911 call made by defendant (very good)
*Photo – what 20,000 pages of “inappropriate emails” looks like –
*Tennessee v. James Washington – gave “deathbed confession” to guard James Tomlinson – confessed to killing Joyce Goodener. He did not die and recanted the confession. It’s a statement of a party opponent and not hearsay, but a good one to talk about a dying declaration – it would not be a dying declaration because it did not concern the circumstances of his own death
*Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Gerald Sandusky (really these are statements of party opponents for the administrators at Penn State) – could also use for Authentication
*Commonwealth of Pennsylvania v. Monsignor William Lynn – evidence of destruction of evidence by priests – conspiracy and pleas
*Lowering the Bar – from website (humor) – photo – not video (good) -
*People of the State of California v. Phillip Spector – Opening Statement by Asst. Dist. Attny. Alan Jackson – chose not to use some of the statements of Spector – left Defense without much of its opening argument. Also – mentions a “history” of violence – Rule 404 (good)
*Florida v. James “Bob” Ward (millionaire who shot his wife Diane) – weird behavior and different stories about what happened. Very good
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson – Stepbrother of Drew Peterson testifies about Drew Peterson statements about 4th wife Stacy Peterson (who disappeared) – good.
*From The Smoking Gun – Statement? Photo – not video -
*Dennis Rodman – kicked cameraman – this case settled. Dennis’s statement did not help him too much…

803(2) – Excited Utterance  
*Dueling 911 calls - great
*George Zimmerman – arrested at home of girlfriend Samantha Scheibe – not yet charged -
Here is Samantha Scheibe’s 911 call.
And on this website, on the right-hand side – you can click to hear George Zimmerman’s 911 call

803(6) – Business Records
*State of Florida v. John Goodman (Polo Tycoon) – bar tab, also great for a defendant testifying and for a complaint by juror that prosecutors were “making faces.” (excellent)

803(8) – Public Records – Police Report
*Florida v. George Zimmerman – police report – not video

804(b)(2) – Dying Declaration
*Marvin Harrison – A wide receiver for the Indianapolis Colts – was suspected of firing shots at Dwight Dixon. Prosecutor did not press charges. Dixon filed a civil suit. Then Dixon was shot and killed – gave a statement to the police as he was being wheeled to the operating room [Harrison may indeed be charged – see: This story is great – it is a bit long – 13 minutes. If you start at minute 8:50, you’ll get the gist of it. At minute 10, it mentions the dying declaration. Also good for Confrontation Clause purposes.
*803-804 – Hearsay Exceptions
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson – convicted of killing his third wife Kathleen (his fourth wife Stacy disappeared) – Hearsay statements of both Kathleen and Stacy (although there was an Illinois law passed specifically to get the statements in, ultimately the State did not use “Drew’s Law.” (excellent) (minutes 28 through 36 – and the entire clip is good)
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson (Pre-trial Hearing) – testimony of psychic who had talked to Drew’s 4th wife; and testimony about how the investigation into his 3rd wife’s death was botched. Good.

Rule 901 - Authentication
*Forensic Linguistics (imbedded video on left-hand side) - excellent
*Commonwealth of Kentucky v. Michael Bakerphoto – not video (could also use for Rule 403)
*Alabama v. David “Gabe” Watson – (the “Honeymoon Killer”) – his wife died on their honeymoon at the Great Barrier Reef – she drowned – compelling picture –
*California v. Orenthal James (OJ)  Simpson – not a video, but great for the photos of the Bruno Magli shoes -
*Florida v. Patrick Evans (wealthy Jabil executive convicted of shooting his wife and boyfriend) – the shooter’s voice was on the 911 call made by his wife – very good
*Montana v. Jordan Linn Graham (“newlywed murder at Glacier National Park) – near the end of the video – mention of a “black cloth,” and a fake email.
*How to fake Twitter, Facebook, Texts – the guy is a bit odd, but a great education on how to do it and how easy it is -
*U.S. v. Barry Lamar Bonds – Judge makes a ruling on Greg Anderson (Bonds’ friend who refused to testify against him) – it looks as though the government will not be able to get into evidence the urine. At trial, the government used “chain of custody” (with a whole lot of witnesses) and actually got the urine sample into evidence – he was convicted. But not of steroid use – but rather of obstruction of justice.
*Just an amazing truck crash
*Calcagno v. Springfield (Rick Springfield – the singer and former soap opera actor) – a photo, not a video – authenticating a buttocks
*Video of Florida teen (Maffa?) – high on synthetic marijuana - called K2 – good

*Georgia Tech Phi Kappa Tau – emails – good –
*Massachusetts v. Aaron Hernandez- with gun?

*Rule 1101(d)(3) – Applicability of the Rules – Sentencing
*Ohio v. Thomas M. (TJ) Lane – school shooting – family members spoke and TJ showed up in a “Killer” t-shirt and gave the families the finger. Good, but a bit off the beaten track.

6th Amendment – Confrontation Clause
*Ricardo Woods, Eyeblink testimony to identify Defendant (excellent)
*Maryland v. Jermaine Hailes - Another eye-blink case: (uncertain whether 6th Amendment was raised – Judge is deciding whether testimony is allowed on reliability and dying declaration).
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson – statement of 4th wife (who disappeared) to a neighbor – good one for whether it’s testimonial.

*Alaska v. Mechele Lineham – “letter from the grave”- after Appeals Court overturned the conviction, she was never retried -

Opening and Closing Statements (not evidence, of course)
*New Jersey v. Dharun Ravi (Tyler Clementi suicide case)
*Virginia v. George Huguely (UVA Lacrosse player – murder of girlfriend) – prosecutor cried in closing statement (odd) and characterized his client as a “stupid drunk” – who lacked intent.

Longer Videos
*Illinois v. Drew Peterson – Dateline – 42 minutes
*State of Arizona v. Jodi Arias - Dateline
*Many videos of Arizona v. Arias case:
*Highlights of California v. Dr. Conrad Murray - excellent
*Eyewitness – the case of North Carolina v. Ronald Cotton – exonerated by DNA – now speaks across the country with his accuser – amazing case