Using Expert Testimony for More Effective Prosecution
Successful prosecution of criminal sexual conduct cases requires collaboration among the disciplines most central to the criminal justice system: law enforcement, victim advocates, healthcare professionals and prosecutors.
The Sexual Violence Justice Institute provides resources that prosecutors and professionals can use to become familiar with each other's work, and increase the likelihood of good case outcomes and effective prosecutions.
- Sexual Assault Nurse Examiners (SANEs) and other healthcare professionals learn how their practices affect the criminal justice process.
- Law enforcement officers, victim advocates and healthcare professionals learn about best practices for victim interviewing and forensic evidence collection, and how to be effective witnesses in the courtroom.
- Prosecutors learn about sexual assault from healthcare professionals and advocates, such as what happens in the sexual assault exam room, why individual reactions to sexual violence can vary widely, and other information helpful in working compassionately with victims and shaping their cases.
- Prosecutors also learn how to help jurors better understand facts and research presented, and how to leverage testimony by expert witnesses to increase the strength of their cases.