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Definition of Witness

The witness in either a criminal or civil trial has the responsibility to provide information to the jury so they can reach a verdict. Witnesses must tell the truth and provide information which is true based on their experience and knowledge. Witnesses may be called by the prosecution or the defense.

Expert witnesses may also be called by either party and can be used to provide specific knowledge or information based on their education, training, skill, or experience which can provide expert information about the facts or issues of the case.

Witnesses should take their time, make sure they understand the question before answering, and dress professionally. If they are presenting information for the defense or the prosecution they should be prepped for testimony by the appropriate lawyer. Common witnesses for a car accident can include: another driver, a pedestrian, a medical expert, bartender, victim, cab driver, character witness, forensic scientist, breath test administrator and passenger.

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