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It is extremely important for the client to be involved in preparing the defense. I need the client to present me with a detailed chronology of events, a cast of characters, each person’s involvement, and any motives the client can think of for the false allegations. The client should photograph or videotape the scene of the alleged incident. Try and make notes or attempt to obtain written statements by witnesses who can corroborate this evidence.
It may also become necessary to obtain an independent expert evaluation by a psychologist or psychiatrist. An expert witness for the defense cannot testify that the allegations are false or that she does not believe the child. However, the expert witness may be able to explain to the jury what the typical characteristics are of a person who commits sex crimes and that the client does not fit the profile. In addition, an expert witness may be able to explain to juries how children’s memories work. The expert may be able to explain why children’s memories can be mistaken.
We will have these examinations performed at the request of the attorney so that they are the work product of the attorney. We also need to try and obtain the school records and any pediatric records of the complaining witness. These records may reveal discrepancies or inconsistencies in the child’s story. We need to see if there is any change in the behavior of the child at the time that he or she says the abuse occurred.