In a trial, an expert witness with a career’s worth of experience testifying before a jury can not only make your case – it can crush the other side. It also helps when the witness is a seasoned private investigator and former supervisory Federal agent.
In this video, Thomas G. Martin discusses a case from his time as a Federal agent in which a criminal with nothing to lose decided to file a false case against him and his agents. Not only did Martin win the case, but he crushed the defense.
A transcript of the video follows:
It happens a lot when people get arrested and they’re not happy with you, and they’re they’re smuggling drugs and they’re facing a lot of time – so they try to make their problems your problems.
It didn’t happen too often to me in my career, but I remember one time I was the supervisor of a group, and when you’re a supervisor, you just kind of stay out of everybody’s way and you don’t go on the arrest, and you let those guys work their magic so they can move up in their career. And so I remember one day sitting in the office and I got this civil lawsuit filed against myself and three or four of my guys for beating up this Class 1 Violator.
And I’m thinking, I call a meeting and I go, ‘Who is this person?’ and everybody goes, ‘Oh yeah, we arrested’ (it was a female), ‘we arrested her without incident, took her to jail, she got an attorney and made bail on we’re going to trial’.
And I said, ‘Well, what is she suing me for?’
Fast forward the video tape of life down, she goes to trial, and as part of the trial she’s accusing the agents doing all this bad stuff. Forget that she had two pounds of heroin and a pound of cocaine. She said the agents beat her, and that ‘this guy Tom Martin was the supervisor and he condoned it all and then he gave me a whack on the nose too.’
I was stunned. The only thing I could do, when something confronts you like this, is just tell the truth.
I told the jury (and they were looking at me like, at first, I guess they thought I was an ogre or something), I sat in the jury box, and I said, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, not only did I not hit this person, I was in another state at the time. I mean if she tells one lie, then I think you have to believe everything’s a lie.’
Of course the defense jumps up, and ‘Martin’s trying to change the strategy the trial’, and ‘He can’t say that’, and ‘We object’. And the judge, who is a very famous judge in Los Angeles, just told the defense attorney, “You asked him the question, and if he got the answer in, too bad.”
And so anyway, she was convicted and she was given 10 years, and of course the civil suit was dismissed.