Representing our client at trial is the culmination of weeks or months devoted to factual investigation, legal research, motion practice, witness preparation, jury selection, and a host of other tasks. In complex cases, a minimum of two Rankin & Sultan lawyers will usually prepare and try the case together. The defense trial strategy is worked out in close consultation with our client well before trial. It is rare, of course, that a trial will proceed without any surprises. However, the more preparation that has been done in advance, the better prepared counsel will be to deal with unexpected developments as they occur.
Jury impanelment is a critical part of every trial since it determines the identity of the individuals who will sit in judgment of our client. In a number of high-profile cases, we have persuaded trial judges to use questionnaires to obtain extensive background information about potential jurors. In 2015, Massachusetts state courts began permitting lawyers to question potential jurors directly during the impanelment process. This is one more tool now available to us to identify those individuals who will be biased against our client and keep them off the jury.
Clients who choose to go to trial often face grave risks. We owe it to them to devote all of our skills and energies to securing the best possible result. Over the past few years, we have won acquittals in two first degree murder cases, a high-profile political corruption case, and a Federal fraud case. We don’t win an acquittal at every trial, but each and every one of our clients know that we have done everything we could to provide them with the best possible opportunity to obtain the best possible result.