Sunday, September 11, 2011

The Cross Examination Handbook

Thanks to Professor Mitch Rubinstein at our sister publication, the Adjunct Law Prof Blog, for this.  It's a new publication from Aspen called "The Cross Examination Handbook: Persuasion and Strategies and Techniques" by Professors Ronald Clark (Seattle - and Distinguished Practitioner in Residence ), George R. Dekle (Florida - and the man who put Ted Bundy behind bars) and William S. Bailey, esq., a civil litigator in Seattle. 

Here's what Professor Rubinstein has to say about the X-Exam Handbook:

I wish law schools utilized more texts such as [this]. In a nutshell, [it] . . . teaches you about the art-and it is an art- of cross examination.

The cross examation book spans 389 pages and contains a CD with sample files and assignments. The trial advocacy book spans 619 pages and contains a DVD which is a case demonstration that is well worth watching. 

Aspen's web site describes the cross examination book as follows:

  • Concrete instruction on planning the winning cross-examination, such as how to select the content and mold it into a persuasive concession-seeking or impeachment cross
  • Practical techniques and strategies for performing cross, including witness control, handling problematic witnesses and successfully cross-examining experts
  • Illustrative cross-examinations from notable trials, such as the O. J. Simpson, Scopes, Senator Stevens, and Enron, show how to apply cross strategies and techniques
  • Case files and role-play assignments provide opportunities to practice preparing and performing cross-examinations in two criminal and two civil cases
  • Ethical and legal boundaries of cross-examination
  • Teacher’s Manual and Actors Guide and suggested syllabi make the exercise material both teacher-, lawyer- and student-friendly
Many a lawyer can benefit from reading [this book]. I have one constructive thought. [It] contain[s] virtually no cites to cases and only occasionally cite[s] to FRE. I would have much preferred the [book if it] contained footnoted authority. That way, it would be easier for a lawyer to back up a position he or she may have taken.

Order it from Aspen here.


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