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DNA - A Prosecutor’s Practice Notebook Inventory

Opening Statements

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Introduction to Opening Statements

Photo of a female lawyer in a courtroom
National Institute of Justice (NIJ) (see reuse policy).

Following voir dire, the jury will know that DNA plays a role in the case being considered and that they will probably hear expert testimony about DNA typing. DNA evidence is an important means of re-creating the reality of the crime for the jury. Prosecutors should, however, exercise caution in not overstating the nature of anticipated DNA evidence or witness testimony during opening statements.

In this topic you will learn about opening statements in DNA cases, to include:

  • How they should be prepared
  • What their focus and goal should be

Note: Review the topic titled Strategic Voir Dire in this lesson for additional information on voir dire.

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