During your initial interview, your King County DUI defense attorney will use the time with you to gather important facts and identify legal issues in your case. However, your attorney may also use the initial interview for a second purpose — to evaluate your potential as a witness. Specifically, your King County DUI defense attorney will consider whether you can help your own case by appearing as a witness and testifying in court.
Some defendants are better witnesses than others. Individuals who blacked out often cannot help much because they may have few memories about the conduct which led to arrest and DUI charges. However, even if you blacked out, you may be able to regain your memory through hypnosis, which has become a usable technique in some DUI cases.
Similarly, if you have some memories of the incident, hypnosis might be an effective way to fill the gaps in your memory. Substantial gaps in your memory, however, might create an unfavorable impression in court or allow the prosecutor to point out damaging facts in your case. If your attorney does not believe that you would help your own case by testifying, your attorney may need to develop a legal strategy for your defense that does not include your testimony in court.
If you have clear, complete memories of the incident, including memories of the DUI stop and arrest, you may be a good candidate to testify in your own defense. Detailed descriptions may help to show the court that you were not intoxicated and not under the influence of alcohol or drugs. However, even if you have perfect memories of the incident, your King County criminal lawyer will also need to decide whether you can “sell yourself” while testifying and create a positive impression.
Your attorney might also use the initial interview to test how you would hold up under questioning by the judge or the prosecutor. Cross-examination may become aggressive, demanding, or fast-paced. If you can remain calm, you might be able to better withstand cross-examination in court. However, if you become easily upset or flustered, you may provide the prosecutor with opportunities to trip up your testimony. But don’t worry if you feel nervous about testifying; your King County DUI attorney will serve as a resource for you to understand next steps in your case and help you to prepare before calling you as a witness.