In his murder and arson trial in 2007, Justin Chapman decided not to testify in his own behalf. This meant the jury didn’t hear his voice until after it had found him guilty.
Devoted watchers of TV crime shows know this is pretty standard. Legally, the defendant has no obligation to testify. Practically, even an innocent defendant may suffer serious damage on cross-examination by a skilled prosecutor.
This glossary is adapted from a much more detailed listing found at uscourts.gov, the website of the United States Courts.
Try it yourself! The following questions are based on questions from past Georgia Bar Exams, and the answers are gleaned, in part, from actual responses that were adjudged correct by the state bar examiners.