Court Watch Expectation Personal Experience Report
My first expectation in attending a court session is to learn the different roles of in the court during proceedings. These include the judge, lawyers for the complainant and the defendant, court clerk, security personnel, court administrator (bailiff), and a juvenile officer in case the accused is a minor. I will learn how each person plays out his/ her role towards ensuring that the rule of law is upheld. It will be interesting to watch the two sets of lawyers approach the same case from different perspectives and with opposing motives: that of proving the innocence of the defendant and of ensuring that he is punished.
Apart from the court staff, I expect to learn about the sections of the courtroom and the function of each. I have read that the judge sits at the bench and adjacent to him are desks used by the clerk and reporter. I have also read that the plaintiff, defendant and their on one side of the judge while the public occupies the other side (gallery). I expect to see these in practice in order to understand the courtroom system further.
In the same way, I am hoping to be familiar with the courtroom rules and regulations, such as bowing towards the judge when entering the courtroom and staying quiet during proceedings. I expect to learn other rules that are followed before, during after a court session as the judge leaves.
Attending a court session will enable me to observe all the procedures that are followed, from the preliminary hearing, disposition hearing, arraignment, pretrial hearings and sentencing. I am hoping to observe how, in the initial court proceedings, the charges are filed and how the court advises the defendant of the rights accorded to him by the state. After charges are filed, I expect to hear how the , especially the cross-examination of prosecution witnesses and how the judge uses this information to either terminate or push the case to the next stage. The part I anticipate most is the cross-examination as this shows the professionalism of a lawyer and a can lead to the acquittal of a suspect.
Besides cross-examination, I am hoping to see what criteria the judge uses to determine whether a trial should be dismissed or taken to the next stage of hearing. When the latter occurs, I hope to see how the judge uses the evidence presented to him to determine the punishment to be meted on the suspect.
Finally, I have expectations of getting to hear of the language used in the court, some of which I have heard in the news channels or read. These , overruled, hearsay, parole, and plea among a large group of other words. I have great expectations of this day and it will be a major step towards achieving my childhood desire of working in the judiciary.