Published on November 9th, 2012 | by Trey Cox0
How to Deal with an Inadmissible Blurt-Out
When a witness volunteers an answer that is both non-responsive and information that is not properly in the record – containing material that you have a right to have excluded from the case – then you must object and move to strike and/or request a limiting instruction. These requests have nothing to do with erasing the material from the minds of the jurors. It is based on legal technicalities. An unresponsive answer that is not objected to and stricken is in the record. All objections to it are waived. It becomes legal evidence that may be utilized later in the trial during summation or even on appeal.
In summary, when a witness on cross-examination volunteers evidence that you can keep out of the record, you must object and move to strike. But answers that are merely unresponsive and not illegal should immediately be dealt with by you.