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Criminal Procedure

University of Richmond

2003

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Virtual Cross-Examination: The Art Of Impeaching Hearsay, John G. Douglass Jan 2003

Virtual Cross-Examination: The Art Of Impeaching Hearsay, John G. Douglass

Law Faculty Publications

Trial lawyers and judges are quite accustomed to courtroom battles over the admissibility of hearsay. But relatively few have much experience at challenging the credibility of hearsay. Once hearsay is admitted in evidence, even the ablest advocates typically proceed as if the hearsay battle were over, at least until the appeal. Few lawyers take advantage of the opportunities available to impeach the hearsay declarant. Consider the perspective of one experienced trial judge: I sometimes wonder at what seems to me the passing up of golden opportunities by the able advocate. Foremost among these lost opportunities is the virtual total neglect ...