Pinning Down An Elusive Cop On Cross-Examination
by Jamison Koehler on June 24, 2014
A: Define when you say approach.
Q: I am sorry?
A: Define what you mean when you say approach.
Q: Officer. Unless I am mistaken, it was you who used the word approach. On direct. Am I wrong about that?
A: No. No, I guess, I guess I used the word.
Q: You used the word yourself, right?
Q: And when you used that word on direct, exactly what did you mean when you used it?
A: I don’t know. I guess it used it to mean that he came toward me —
Q: — Great. Thank you. When you testified on direct that the defendant approached you, when he came toward you . . .
Q: Officer, I assume there was a 911 call.
A: Yes, there was.
Q: You didn’t hear it.
A: No, I didn’t.
Q: Do you know what time the 911 call came in?
A: I do not know.
Q: What time did the lookout call come?
A: I have no idea, sir. I can’t recall.
Q: Officer. You were very precise on direct on the timeframes for the two incidents. And now you are testifying that you have no idea on a timeframe for either the 911 call or the lookout?
A: I’m giving approximate timeframes for the incidents. You’re asking me for an exact time. I don’t know that, sir.
Q: You don’t know that?
A: No, sir.
Q: How about, well, if not an exact time, then how about a general time?
Q: For? Well, let’s start with the 911 call.
A: I don’t know that.
Q: How about for the lookout?
A: The initial lookout came out with the call. I don’t know what time that was that it came out, though.
Q: Well, let’s try it this way then. When the 911 call came, was that in the morning or was that in the afternoon?
PROSECUTOR: Objection, your Honor, the witness has answered that he doesn’t know the specific time.
DEFENSE ATTORNEY: Now I am asking for a general time.
THE WITNESS: Okay, a general –
THE COURT: If he can provide a general time he may do so.
THE WITNESS: A general time for what, sir?
Q: For when the 911 call came.
THE COURT: If you, if you know.
A: It was in the morning.
Q: In the morning?
Q: Thank you. Was it before 11:00 am?
A: Yes, sir.
Q: Was it after 10:00 am?
A: Yes, sir. Somewhere in the area of 10:00 to 10:10 am.
Q: Thank you . . .