During a trial, attorneys will present evidence, and will begin by presenting witnesses at the trial. Your criminal defense attorney will be given the chance to ask questions of his witness first. This questioning is referred to as a direct examination. A direct examination is conducted by your own attorney. The purpose of a direct examination is to get evidence, and facts that directly support your case.
Your attorney cannot ask all types of questions, however. Leading questions are not allowed. In other words, your Denver criminal defense attorney cannot ask the witness questions that are guaranteed to prompt a particular answer. Witnesses are not allowed to draw conclusions from the evidence presented. However, they can identify evidence in the form of photographs and other items.
Once the examination is concluded, the opposing lawyer will subject the witness to a cross examination. The cross examination will aim to minimize the credibility of the witness. The opposing lawyer will try to establish that the witness suffers from some sort of bias, and that his testimony is unreliable. He may try to establish that the witness is untruthful, or does not know enough about the facts. The opposing lawyer may also try to establish whether the witness benefits from an outcome of the case in favor of the defendant. The whole point will be to destroy the witness’s credibility.
Remember, the opposing lawyer may use much more aggressive tactics during a cross-examination. For instance, leading questions may be asked. However, the questions may be limited to the testimony already provided by the witness.
If you have been arrested for an offense, get in touch with a Denver criminal defense attorney immediately. It’s important to secure your release, and get working on your defense as soon as possible.