Robert L. Sepp | Attorney at Law
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How a deposition could make or break your case

On Behalf of | Feb 21, 2024 | Criminal Defense |

As we’ve discussed previously on the blog, there are several defense strategies that you can utilize in a domestic violence case. This includes arguing self-defense, attacking witness credibility, and highlighting lack of evidence to prove the offense’s statutory elements. But there are other tactics that can position you for a strong defense. This includes using depositions.

What is a deposition?

A deposition is the process of questioning a witness, who is placed under oath, prior to trial. Witnesses are often required to answer questions even if they’re answers are based on hearsay, and the side that is responding to the deposition often doesn’t ask any questions. Although the deposition process is often thought of as being less formal than trial testimony, its ramifications are still important.

Why depositions matter

There are several advantages to taking depositions. Perhaps the most important is that it gives you the opportunity to file a motion in limine, which can block a witness from testifying against you. This is justified when you subpoena a witness to a deposition, and they fail to appear. Alleged victims of domestic violence incidents often do this, and when they do, you can blow a hole in the prosecution’s case.

Depositions have other benefits, too, including:

  • Locking witnesses into their statements so that you can highlight inconsistencies in their accounts.
  • Learning new information that can provide direction for the development of your criminal defense.
  • Identifying how witnesses intend to testify on cross-examination, giving you the ability to formulate your strategy before heading into trial.

Leave no stone unturned in your criminal defense

To maximize your chances of successfully beating the prosecution in your domestic violence case, you need to take a comprehensive approach to your defense. Be sure to assess all of your options in depth, including discovery tools like depositions, so that you can choose the path forward that best suits the facts of your case.