Wednesday, February 1, 2006

Trial Exhibits - Some Samples

[TIP] Class this week discussed the use of trial exhibits. There can be quite a range, starting with the classic diagram of an intersection. I did a little searching to see if I could find some interesting examples.

    An amazing number of companies offer their services to lawyers in creating graphics, computer animations, and so on.

    • The Evidence Store got my attention with a quip: "Even Moses Used Exhibits! The ten commandments were possibly the first use of federal rule 1006 permitting summary charts of otherwise voluminous evidence." Another page asks: "Need a hand for your day in court? How about a foot or a skull?" Amusement aside, the site offers good illustrations of timelines; flow, bar, and column charts; pain and suffering charts; and diagrams.
    • Animators at Law is another company that produces custom graphics. It also has examples explaining different techniques. For instance, under "metaphor," it illustrates "garbage in, garbage out:"

    For reading, see:
  • Effective Use of Courtroom Technology: A Judge's Guide to Pretrial and Trial (2001) is a little dated, but offers a good overview of the technology (document cameras, projectors, etc.) and the issues. This 358-page manual was a project of the Federal Judicial Center and NITA.
  • "Beyond the Flip Chart: How to Use the Latest Courtroom Technology to Wow a Judge or Jury," is a two-page article from Legal Times, March 22, 2004.
  • "Demonstrative Exhibits That Make a Difference," a two-page article by Linda L. Listrom from Trial Practice (an ABA Litigation Section newsletter), Spring 2005.
    • (By the way, why do the articles about the power of good graphics have no graphics?)

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