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How To Prepare For Taking The Witness Stand

Mount Holly criminal trial attorney

As you know, a criminal defendant has the right against self-incrimination under the Fifth Amendment, and therefore is not required to take the stand. In some cases, this is very important for a defendant. But other cases actually benefit from the defendant taking the stand and giving his version of the facts.

If, after discussing your criminal case with your Mount Holly criminal trial attorney, you decide that it is in your best interest to take the stand, proper preparation is key.

Are You Ready To Take The Stand?

Being prepared to face both direct and cross examination in front of the jury is of critical importance to your case. Without the right practice and preparation, you could hurt things more than help. In fact, the results can be devastating.

Here are some tips on how to prep for your big moment:

  1. Be Consistent. You know that on direct examination, your own Mount Holly criminal trial attorney will be asking you the questions. Direct questioning will, in essence, be you telling the story – not the attorney. However, on cross examination, the opposing attorney will attempt to control the narrative by asking you leading questions. The important thing is that you remain consistent with what you said on direct. Although the prosecutor will try to trip you up and make you give different answers, think about the question and answer carefully. TIP: A good Mount Holly criminal trial attorney will practice with you beforehand and give you likely questions you will face on cross examination.
  2. Be Mindful of the Jury. How the jury perceives you can have serious ramifications on the ultimate outcome of your case. How you look, speak, and dress all affect a jury’s sense of who you are and what you stand for. You are on trial – every move you make is under strict scrutiny by these twelve members of the jury.
  3. Listen to Your Attorney. It might be tempting to tune out your Mount Holly criminal trial attorney after a while, but it is in your best interest to allow him to help you understand all aspects of the case. While he or she may not reveal every trick they have up their sleeves, it’s important to have a general sense of what their strategy will be. This will help you to not be so surprised at trial when you hear them saying certain things about you, your life, and the facts of the case at hand.

Contact A Mount Holly Criminal Trial Attorney Today

The worst thing you can do is walk into your trial and take the stand unprepared! A skilled criminal trial attorney in Mount Holly will walk you through the case and properly prepare you for your time in the hot seat. Your attorney will know the importance of crafting a winning defense strategy, but you have to be willing to take their advice.

If you still need a criminal trial attorney in Mount Holly, contact Mark Catanzaro today to set up your free consultation.


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Mt. Holly, New Jersey


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