White Paper

8 Pages
  • 8 Pages

How Body Language Can Impact Witness Credibility


A witness’s nerve can testify against them.

The nervous tremble of your hands, the tremor in your voice, the splotches of red on your neck and cheeks … most of us have been there when the nerves take over. Particularly when nerves kick in when you are in front of a judge or jury and need to speak publicly … testifying can be even more nerve-wracking. This white paper reviews how some body language can give a bad impression and how to cure some of those behaviors.



Merrie Jo Pitera, Ph.D.

Merrie Jo Pitera, Ph.D.

Litigation Insights, Inc

  • CEO/senior research director, Litigation Insights, Inc., a jury research, visual communications company
  • A psychology and communications expert who has more than 28 years of experience in the field
  • Practice areas include intellectual property, employment, commercial, environmental and product liability/personal injury litigation
  • Has accompanied dozens of trial teams to trial
  • Frequent national and international speaker on jury behavior, witness prep methods, and jury selection.
  • In addition to publishing articles in a variety of law journals on jury selection and trial preparation, she has authored many white papers re the communication skills for the testifying expert and/or corporate witness; co-author of a book entitled: Storytelling for the Defense: The Defense Attorney’s Courtroom Guide to Beating Plaintiffs at their Own Game
  • Can be contacted at [email protected]
No photo available

Katrina Cook, Ph.D.

Litigation Insights

Dr. Cook’s background includes a Bachelor of Science in Cognitive Psychology, a Master of Arts and Doctor of Philosophy in Communication Studies with an emphasis in legal communication, all from the University of Kansas. As part of this academic training, Katy also studied statistical analysis and social science research designs, including both qualitative and quantitative design. She has performed research on numerous topics, such as cognitive psychology, group communication, persuasion, conflict negotiation, interpersonal communication, and organizational communication. Further, she has experience teaching public speaking, group communication, and quantitative research methods. With these strong credentials, she assists with a variety of jury research services, from internet social searches and supplemental juror questionnaire development to research design and statistical data interpretation.

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