History Main / AccuseTheWitness

18th Mar '16 9:05:52 PM nombretomado
Is there an issue? Send a Message


** In one episode, Eugene and Bobby try this in a murder trial, and Bobby gets chewed out over it by ''{{Ally McBeal}}'' herself, who asks him whether he really believes that the witness did it (Bobby doesn't). It takes a very strange turn when the guy they accuse [[spoiler: commits suicide]]. Then it turns out that [[spoiler: Bobby's theory was entirely correct]].

to:

** In one episode, Eugene and Bobby try this in a murder trial, and Bobby gets chewed out over it by ''{{Ally ''Series/{{Ally McBeal}}'' herself, who asks him whether he really believes that the witness did it (Bobby doesn't). It takes a very strange turn when the guy they accuse [[spoiler: commits suicide]]. Then it turns out that [[spoiler: Bobby's theory was entirely correct]].
17th Mar '16 11:14:58 PM bwburke94
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* A similar thing happens in ''WebAnimation/PhoenixWrightDevilsAttorney'' as well, although it isn't as heavy on the TearJerker part. Mostly because [[spoiler: [[VideoGame/DisgaeaHourOfDarkness Flonne]]]] is capable of looking after [[spoiler: herself]] and understands why Phoenix had to do it, the new laws in the Netherworld of 'guilty until someone else is proven guilty' forcing him to do this to extend the trial less Laharl would convicted on the first day. However, [[spoiler: she]] did say it stung a little, and Laharl is none too happy about it either.
* The last witness is the real perpetrator in [[spoiler:four]] of the four cases in ''[[VideoGame/{{Touhou}} Aya Shameimaru: Touhou Attorney]]'', a fangame based on the ''Franchise/AceAttorney'' games.

to:

* A similar thing happens in ''WebAnimation/PhoenixWrightDevilsAttorney'' as well, although it isn't as heavy on the TearJerker part. Mostly because [[spoiler: [[VideoGame/DisgaeaHourOfDarkness Flonne]]]] the witness is capable of looking after [[spoiler: herself]] herself and understands why Phoenix had to do it, the new laws in the Netherworld of 'guilty until someone else is proven guilty' forcing him to do this to extend the trial less Laharl would convicted on the first day. However, [[spoiler: she]] did say it stung a little, and Laharl is none too happy about it either.
* The last witness is the real perpetrator in [[spoiler:four]] a number of the four cases in ''[[VideoGame/{{Touhou}} Aya Shameimaru: Touhou Attorney]]'', a fangame based on the ''Franchise/AceAttorney'' games.
2nd Mar '16 6:03:30 AM Morgenthaler
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* The prosecuting attorneys on ''Franchise/LawAndOrder'' have occasionally filed charges against a family member of their real suspect in order to pressure them into a confession, plea bargain or other "short-cut" resolution to the case.
** They'll also occasionally threaten to expose personal information that the defendant would rather go to jail than have made public (which seldom raises any questions as to whether they might be innocent and confessing ''just'' to keep their secret hidden), to achieve the same end. In both instances, the [=DAs=] will lampshade the desperation nature of the ploy, plus the likelihood that if the defendant doesn't bite, the presiding judge may not even let them follow through on their threat.
* Subverted in ''HomicideLifeOnTheStreet'': In an antic taken from the book which inspired the series, in a murder for which the body was not found, the defendants' lawyer insists that the whole case is nothing more than a publicity stunt, and that the "victim" is going to walk into the courtroom... Now! He doesn't, but, as the lawyer points out, the fact that everyone ''looked'' proves that they have a reasonable doubt. Once the defendants have been convicted, the thunderstruck prosecutor and defense attorney ask a jury member why the antic didn't work: one of the jurors noticed that ''the defendants'' hadn't looked -- they knew darned right well that the victim was dead.
** A further subversion in an earlier episode of Homicide. Kay Howard and Ed Danvers, while going over trial strategy on the Pony Johnson case, argue over the use of one of the victim's sons (and Pony's friend and drug mule) as a witness. Danvers notes that the son was at the scene, knew the victim and provided the bullets used to kill the victim and would thus make a terrible witness as the defense attorney would simply take all of that information and use it to set up the witness as the perfect alternative murderer, gaining them an acquittal.[[note]]This scene is an almost word for word mirror of a scene from the ''Homicide: A Year On The Killing Streets'' true crime book that inspired the series. It almost worked for the defense, too, but the perp's key witness, his girlfriend, was so unconvincing that by the end the jury were laughing at her. Guilty.[[/note]]

to:

* The prosecuting attorneys on ''Franchise/LawAndOrder'' have occasionally filed charges against a family member of their real suspect in order to pressure them into a confession, plea bargain or other "short-cut" resolution to the case.
**
case. They'll also occasionally threaten to expose personal information that the defendant would rather go to jail than have made public (which seldom raises any questions as to whether they might be innocent and confessing ''just'' to keep their secret hidden), to achieve the same end. In both instances, the [=DAs=] will lampshade the desperation nature of the ploy, plus the likelihood that if the defendant doesn't bite, the presiding judge may not even let them follow through on their threat.
* Subverted in ''HomicideLifeOnTheStreet'': ''Series/HomicideLifeOnTheStreet'':
** Subverted.
In an antic taken from the book which inspired the series, in a murder for which the body was not found, the defendants' lawyer insists that the whole case is nothing more than a publicity stunt, and that the "victim" is going to walk into the courtroom... Now! He doesn't, but, as the lawyer points out, the fact that everyone ''looked'' proves that they have a reasonable doubt. Once the defendants have been convicted, the thunderstruck prosecutor and defense attorney ask a jury member why the antic didn't work: one of the jurors noticed that ''the defendants'' hadn't looked -- they knew darned right well that the victim was dead.
** A further subversion in an earlier episode of Homicide.episode. Kay Howard and Ed Danvers, while going over trial strategy on the Pony Johnson case, argue over the use of one of the victim's sons (and Pony's friend and drug mule) as a witness. Danvers notes that the son was at the scene, knew the victim and provided the bullets used to kill the victim and would thus make a terrible witness as the defense attorney would simply take all of that information and use it to set up the witness as the perfect alternative murderer, gaining them an acquittal.[[note]]This scene is an almost word for word mirror of a scene from the ''Homicide: A Year On The Killing Streets'' true crime book that inspired the series. It almost worked for the defense, too, but the perp's key witness, his girlfriend, was so unconvincing that by the end the jury were laughing at her. Guilty.[[/note]]



* ''Series/ThePractice'' employed this as a deliberate tactic enough to be the former TropeNamer. One notable example is when Lindsay actually accuses the [[spoiler:defendant's wife]] of conspiracy to commit murder out of the blue as the first question in her cross-examination! [[spoiler: Then again, the accusation was true; Lindsay had a EurekaMoment through an action the wife took while being questioned by the prosecutor. The suddenness and accuracy of Lindsay's accusation caused the wife to panic and plead the Fifth, leading to the judge directing a not guilty verdict and saving the defendant.]]

to:

* ''Series/ThePractice'' employed this as a deliberate tactic enough to be the former TropeNamer. TropeNamer.
**
One notable example is when Lindsay actually accuses the [[spoiler:defendant's wife]] of conspiracy to commit murder out of the blue as the first question in her cross-examination! [[spoiler: Then again, the accusation was true; Lindsay had a EurekaMoment through an action the wife took while being questioned by the prosecutor. The suddenness and accuracy of Lindsay's accusation caused the wife to panic and plead the Fifth, leading to the judge directing a not guilty verdict and saving the defendant.]]



* Alan Shore of ''Series/BostonLegal'' is defending a woman whose much older husband died in mysterious circumstances, leaving his entire fortune to her. Their housekeeper is on the stand, and giving a fairly damning account of the defendant's behaviour. While she does this, Alan is stretching his arms and limbering up. He thanks her, then spins around and points at her in the most dramatic way possible:

to:

* ''Series/BostonLegal'':
**
Alan Shore of ''Series/BostonLegal'' Shore is defending a woman whose much older husband died in mysterious circumstances, leaving his entire fortune to her. Their housekeeper is on the stand, and giving a fairly damning account of the defendant's behaviour. While she does this, Alan is stretching his arms and limbering up. He thanks her, then spins around and points at her in the most dramatic way possible:



** Another example is when Jeffrey is defending a young man accused of killing a judge he was in a relationship with. He, seemingly spontaneously, accuses the man's mother, currently testifying, of being the actual murderer. It's later revealed that this was actually the mother's idea to take suspicion off her son.
*** In this particular example, the mother is revealed at the end to have actually committed the murder. She and her son were in an incestuous relationship and as a result she got jealous when the son started having an affair with the judge.
* Sort of referenced in ''The Defenders'', where Nick knows that his client's alibi witness is the real killer, but can't tell anyone. He says that the jury never buys "the other guy did it", even when the other guy ''did'' do it.[[spoiler: And this is enough for the real killer to confess to Nick, knowing he would just lie on the stand if asked. Then Nick pulls out a tape recorder.]]

to:

** Another example is when Jeffrey is defending a young man accused of killing a judge he was in a relationship with. He, seemingly spontaneously, accuses the man's mother, currently testifying, of being the actual murderer. It's later revealed that this was actually the mother's idea to take suspicion off her son.
*** In this particular example, the mother
son. She is then revealed at the end to have actually committed the murder. She and her son were in an incestuous relationship and as a result she got jealous when the son started having an affair with the judge.
* Sort of referenced in ''The Defenders'', ''Series/TheDefenders'', where Nick knows that his client's alibi witness is the real killer, but can't tell anyone. He says that the jury never buys "the other guy did it", even when the other guy ''did'' do it.[[spoiler: And this is enough for the real killer to confess to Nick, knowing he would just lie on the stand if asked. Then Nick pulls out a tape recorder.]]
30th Jan '16 4:41:41 AM pi4t
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* Potentially inverted in ''VideoGames/NeverwinterNights2''. During the scene when the PC is on trial, the prosecution attempts to invoke this trope by calling you as a witness to your own trial. With enough skills and charisma, you can turn the tables begin accusing the ''prosecutor''.

to:

* Potentially inverted in ''VideoGames/NeverwinterNights2''.''VideoGame/NeverwinterNights2''. During the scene when the PC is on trial, the prosecution attempts to invoke this trope by calling you as a witness to your own trial. With enough skills and charisma, you can turn the tables begin accusing the ''prosecutor''.
30th Jan '16 4:41:06 AM pi4t
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

[[folder:VideoGames]]
* Potentially inverted in ''VideoGames/NeverwinterNights2''. During the scene when the PC is on trial, the prosecution attempts to invoke this trope by calling you as a witness to your own trial. With enough skills and charisma, you can turn the tables begin accusing the ''prosecutor''.
[[/folder]]
20th Jan '16 1:38:41 PM GrantMK2
Is there an issue? Send a Message

Added DiffLines:

* In Clarence Earl Gideon's[[note]]the same man whose legal challenge went to the Supreme Court and established the right of an appointed lawyer in all criminal trials[[/note]] second trial his lawyer argued that a key witness for the prosecution had likely been a lookout for the real criminals.
7th Dec '15 8:29:32 AM Hossmeister
Is there an issue? Send a Message


-->-- ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorney: Justice For All'', Case 1

to:

-->-- ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorney: Justice For All'', ''VisualNovel/PhoenixWrightAceAttorneyJusticeForAll'', Case 1
21st Nov '15 4:51:06 AM Fireblood
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* Subverted in ''HomicideLifeOnTheStreet'': in an antic taken from the book which inspired the series, in a murder for which the body was not found, the defendant's lawyer insists that the whole case is nothing more than a publicity stunt, and that the "victim" is going to walk into the courtroom... Now! He doesn't, but, as the laywer points out, the fact that everyone ''looked'' proves that they have a reasonable doubt. Once the defendants have been convicted, the thunderstruck prosecutor and defense attorney ask a jury member why the antic didn't work: one of the jurors noticed that ''the defendants'' hadn't looked -- they knew darned right well that the victim was dead.
** A further subversion in an earlier episode of Homicide. Kay Howard and Ed Danvers, while going over trial strategy on the Pony Johnson case, argue over the use of one of the victim's sons (and Pony's friend and drug mule) as a witness. Danvers notes that the son was at the scene, knew the victim and provided the bullets used to kill the victim and would thus make a terrible witness as the defence counsel would simply take all of that information and use it to set up the witness as the perfect alternative murderer, gaining them an acquittal.[[note]]This scene is an almost word for word mirror of a scene from the ''Homicide: A Year On The Killing Streets'' true crime book that inspired the series. It almost worked for the defence, too, but the perps key witness, his girlfriend, was so unconvincing that by the end the jury were laughing at her. Guilty.[[/note]]

to:

* Subverted in ''HomicideLifeOnTheStreet'': in In an antic taken from the book which inspired the series, in a murder for which the body was not found, the defendant's defendants' lawyer insists that the whole case is nothing more than a publicity stunt, and that the "victim" is going to walk into the courtroom... Now! He doesn't, but, as the laywer lawyer points out, the fact that everyone ''looked'' proves that they have a reasonable doubt. Once the defendants have been convicted, the thunderstruck prosecutor and defense attorney ask a jury member why the antic didn't work: one of the jurors noticed that ''the defendants'' hadn't looked -- they knew darned right well that the victim was dead.
** A further subversion in an earlier episode of Homicide. Kay Howard and Ed Danvers, while going over trial strategy on the Pony Johnson case, argue over the use of one of the victim's sons (and Pony's friend and drug mule) as a witness. Danvers notes that the son was at the scene, knew the victim and provided the bullets used to kill the victim and would thus make a terrible witness as the defence counsel defense attorney would simply take all of that information and use it to set up the witness as the perfect alternative murderer, gaining them an acquittal.[[note]]This scene is an almost word for word mirror of a scene from the ''Homicide: A Year On The Killing Streets'' true crime book that inspired the series. It almost worked for the defence, defense, too, but the perps perp's key witness, his girlfriend, was so unconvincing that by the end the jury were laughing at her. Guilty.[[/note]]



** It's also used in the 1987 film ''From the Hip'', with Judd Nelson as the defense attorney and John Hurt as the accused; this time, it's Nelson who notices his client didn't look, and Hurt defends himself by scoffing at it as being too obviously theatrical a stunt to take seriously.

to:

** It's also used in the 1987 film ''From the Hip'', with Judd Nelson as the defense attorney and John Hurt as the accused; this time, it's Nelson who notices his client didn't look, and Hurt defends himself by scoffing at it as being too obviously theatrical a stunt to take seriously. [[spoiler: He turns out to have done it.]]



* ''Series/ThePractice'' employed this as a deliberate tactic enough to be the former TropeNamer. One notable example is when in which Lindsay actually accuses the [[spoiler:defendant's wife]] of conspiracy to commit murder out of the blue as the first question in her cross-examination! [[spoiler: Then again, the accusation was true; Lindsay had a EurekaMoment through an action the wife took while being questioned by the prosecutor. The suddenness and accuracy of Lindsay's accusation caused the wife to panic and plead the Fifth, leading to the judge directing a not guilty verdict and saving the defendant.]]

to:

* ''Series/ThePractice'' employed this as a deliberate tactic enough to be the former TropeNamer. One notable example is when in which Lindsay actually accuses the [[spoiler:defendant's wife]] of conspiracy to commit murder out of the blue as the first question in her cross-examination! [[spoiler: Then again, the accusation was true; Lindsay had a EurekaMoment through an action the wife took while being questioned by the prosecutor. The suddenness and accuracy of Lindsay's accusation caused the wife to panic and plead the Fifth, leading to the judge directing a not guilty verdict and saving the defendant.]]



** One plot involved the firm being sued on charges of slander over one particular instance of them trying this. In his closing argument, Jimmy says that there was honour in them doing this, ''not'' because the guy they accused probably did it, but because he probably didn't; it was a soul-destroying thing to accuse him, but they did it anyway, because it was their duty to give their client the best possible defence.
** In one episode, they defended a woman charged with murder. Prosecution claims she ran over her boyfriend. Seven years ago, she was charged with the murder of another love interest by a similar fashion but prosecution wasn't allowed to mention it in the trial because she was never convicted for ''that'' murder. In the time between the closing statements and the verdict (she was found guilty), the defense found out one of the witnesses was the wife of the previous murder victim.

to:

** One plot involved the firm being sued on charges of slander over one particular instance of them trying this. In his closing argument, Jimmy says that there was honour honor in them doing this, ''not'' because the guy they accused probably did it, but because he probably didn't; it was a soul-destroying thing to accuse him, but they did it anyway, because it was their duty to give their client the best possible defence.
defense.
** In one episode, they defended a woman charged with murder. Prosecution The prosecution claims she ran over her boyfriend. Seven years ago, she was charged with the murder of another love interest by in a similar fashion but the prosecution wasn't allowed to mention it in the trial because she was never convicted for ''that'' murder. In the time between the closing statements and the verdict (she was found guilty), the defense found out one of the witnesses was the wife of the previous murder victim.
18th Oct '15 4:59:14 PM nombretomado
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* ''ThePractice'' employed this as a deliberate tactic enough to be the former TropeNamer. One notable example is when in which Lindsay actually accuses the [[spoiler:defendant's wife]] of conspiracy to commit murder out of the blue as the first question in her cross-examination! [[spoiler: Then again, the accusation was true; Lindsay had a EurekaMoment through an action the wife took while being questioned by the prosecutor. The suddenness and accuracy of Lindsay's accusation caused the wife to panic and plead the Fifth, leading to the judge directing a not guilty verdict and saving the defendant.]]

to:

* ''ThePractice'' ''Series/ThePractice'' employed this as a deliberate tactic enough to be the former TropeNamer. One notable example is when in which Lindsay actually accuses the [[spoiler:defendant's wife]] of conspiracy to commit murder out of the blue as the first question in her cross-examination! [[spoiler: Then again, the accusation was true; Lindsay had a EurekaMoment through an action the wife took while being questioned by the prosecutor. The suddenness and accuracy of Lindsay's accusation caused the wife to panic and plead the Fifth, leading to the judge directing a not guilty verdict and saving the defendant.]]
21st Sep '15 6:19:05 AM GnomeTitan
Is there an issue? Send a Message


* The climax of ''Rumpole and the Penge Bungalow Murders'' by John Mortimer. Rumple, having established that the witness was the last man to be seen with the murder weapon, had a motive, and could have shot the men, accuses him. He does ''not'' confess, but his denial is kind of weak -- and before the prosecution can examine the witness again, he bolts. The judge's summation is very favorable to the possibility, and reminds them that if they think it's a real possibility, they can't be sure the guy on trial did it.

to:

* The climax of ''Rumpole and the Penge Bungalow Murders'' by John Mortimer. Rumple, Rumpole, having established that the witness was the last man to be seen with the murder weapon, had a motive, and could have shot the men, accuses him. He The witness does ''not'' confess, but his denial is kind of weak -- and before the prosecution can examine the witness him again, he bolts. The judge's summation is very favorable to the possibility, and reminds them the jury that if they think it's a real possibility, they can't be sure the guy on trial did it.
This list shows the last 10 events of 64. Show all.
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/article_history.php?article=Main.AccuseTheWitness