Going to trial: Rebuttal cases at trial

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If you’ve been following this blog, then you’ve probably gotten a sense of just how complex the Florida criminal process is – even after you have been charged and are standing before a judge. Because so much is at stake in a criminal trial, the judicial system provides the prosecution and the defense with ample opportunity to state their claims and challenge those made by the opposition. As a result, the trial is rife with back and forths between the prosecution and your Miami criminal defense attorney.

Once your legal representative has presented all of the material evidence and has questioned every witness who will benefit your case – and opposing counsel has had a chance to conduct their own line of questioning through cross and recross – the defense will rest.

However, that doesn’t mean the trial is over just yet. At this point, the prosecution may obtain permission from the presiding judge to present a rebuttal argument. This involves calling witnesses to the stand for the express purpose of challenging specific aspects of the case your Miami criminal defense lawyer laid out before the court. New evidence may be introduced at this time, but generally it must directly relate to the defense case-in-chief.

According to federal law, as stated in Peals v. Terre Haute Police Dept., “The proper function of rebuttal evidence is to contradict, impeach or defuse the impact of the evidence offered by an adverse party,” and generally does not include “testimony offered only as additional support to an argument made in a case.”

After the prosecution has rested their rebuttal case, your Miami criminal defense attorney will also be granted the opportunity to refute their claims.

For an experienced Miami criminal defense lawyer who will give your case the personal attention it deserves, call Scott A. Ferris, Esq.