Depositions: What not to testify about

According to Kevin Underhill, the maestro of Lowering the Bar, The New York Times puts out requests periodically for deposition testimony, primarily in the form of videotaped testimony, that it posts somewhere on its web site, I do not know where (but should investigate).

In light of a recent NYT request, Mr. Underhill himself has posted a collection of hilariously crazy depositions. They will keep all of us amused over the next few days, and will offer tacit advice to prospective deponents, along the lines of: don’t do what this guy did. Please.

Let’s start with this one: DA Sticks With Witness Who Says He Sees Horned Aliens – Lowering the Bar. Here’s how it begins:

See, this is what I mean — I already have a stack of material, and then I see a headline like the above in the Daily Journal this very morning.  The hits just keep on coming.  It’s hard to do better than that headline, and this in a week that has also featured the gems “Andy Griffith Decides to Run for Sheriff” and “Spanish King Denies Shooting Drunk Bear.”

Anyway, this story involves the DA’s office in Santa Barbara, California, already under attack for two recent incidents in which deputy DAs were removed from cases because it was revealed that they were involved in book and movie deals related to those cases.  The case reported today is a prosecution of Greka Energy Corp. for alleged health-and-safety violations at its refining operations.  Most of the suit has been settled, but six counts remain to which (happily) the testimony of Gary Lowrey appears to be relevant.

Lowrey is the company’s former public safety officer, and is expected to testify that he warned about certain dangers but was ignored.  At Lowrey’s deposition, Greka’s attorneys did ask about that testimony, but according to the report, “focused much of their questioning on his claims that alienlike creatures emerge from his closet and put pinholes into his chest and those of his family members.”

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