It can be nerve-wracking to face criminal charges. After all, the potential penalties that you’re facing might be quite severe. Therefore, you’re probably trying to figure out what you can do to build the strongest criminal defense possible in hopes of beating the prosecution. While you might have a number of defense options at your disposal depending on the facts of your case, there’s almost always one tactic that you can utilize to help support your case: attacking witness credibility.
Why witness credibility is important
In short, jurors are tasked with giving every witness’s testimony a certain amount of weight. The more weight given to testimony, the more likely that testimony is to sway the jury’s ultimate finding. Therefore, if you want to persuade a jury of your innocence, then you need to build the credibility of your witnesses and attack the reliability of the prosecution’s.
Ways to attack witness credibility
There are several ways that you can go about attacking witness credibility. One commonly used strategy is deposing witnesses so that you lock in their testimony and can then use that depositional testimony to point out inconsistencies between that testimony and the witness’s trial testimony. Another option may be attacking the witness’s prior criminal history, although there are limitations here, and highlighting a witness’s biases or motivations, such as immunity in exchange for prosecutorial testimony.
What this means for you
To mount a successful criminal defense, you need to be thoroughly prepared. This means knowing what witnesses are going to say on the stand and what other evidence the prosecution is going to present. So, there’s a lot of work to be done on the front end of your case. If you’d like assistance in developing a legal strategy that seeks to attack the credibility of the prosecution’s witnesses and counter other evidentiary aspects of the prosecution’s case, then now is the time to speak with a criminal defense lawyer who you think will aggressively fight for you.