Suggestions for the Witnesses
- Be PREPARED.
- Bring your subpoena to court with you.
- Bring to court a list of names and addresses af all witnesses involved in the incident.
- If the Crime Involved the Damage or Destruction of Your Property.... You should obtain written estimates of the damage and bring them to court with you.
- Always Tell the Truth.... Don't guess or make up an answer. If you are asked about any details you don't remember, it is best to say, "I don't remember" .
- Answer ALL Questions Directly.... Answer only the question that is asked. If you can answer with a "yes or no", do so. If you don't understand a question, FEEL FREE TO HAVE THE QUESTION REPEATED OR EXPLAINED.
- Speak Clearly and Distinctly.... The Judge and Jury should be able to hear you.
- Be Attentive.... Be alert at all times so that you can hear, understand and give a proper response to each question. Avoid trying to "SECOND GUESS the questioner. Your prosecutor will develop the incident by your testimony and will object to any improper questioning by the defense during cross-examination.
- Do Not Lose Your Temper.... Losing your temper during cross-examination means losing your credibility. Anger will lessen your recall ability and may cause you to make incorrect statements.
- Dress Conservatively and be Courteous.... The Judge and Jury know nothing of you, except with the impression you make with your testimony and with your appearance.
- Be Aware That the Defendant Will be in the Courtroom at All Times and That You Will be Asked to Identify Him or Her if You Can .... This is easier to deal with if you prepare beforehand. Remember that the defendant is on trial; not you.
- Take a Positive Attitude With You.... It is not a good idea to go into trial with revenge in mind, for no amount of punishment for the defendant can atone for what you have gone through. By going through the process of appearing in and testifying in court, you have shown a great deal of courage and concern for others by hopefully preventing this from happening to another.
For further information .... contact the Victim Assistance Program Coordinator, University Police at 502-852-7290.