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Expert Witness

An expert witness delivered the most dramatic and potentially damaging testimony against the defense at the Mapplethorpe obscenity trial Thursday when she compared two of the photographs at issue to child pornography and said none are fit to hang in an art museum. Judith Reisman, a mass media researcher with links to anti-pornography groups, contradicted the testimony of other arts experts who extolled the late Robert Mapplethorpe as one of the most important photographers of his time.
February 28, 1991 | From United Press International
Expert witnesses gave conflicting testimony Wednesday about Christian Brando's story that he accidentally shot and killed his half-sister's lover during a struggle over a gun. Testifying at a Santa Monica Superior Court hearing that will help the judge decide Brando's sentence on his guilty plea to a charge of voluntary manslaughter, a forensic pathologist called by the prosecution said victim Dag Drollet was probably lying down when he was shot.
July 9, 2013 | By Michael Muskal and Tina Susman
The medical and scientific evidence shows that Trayvon Martin was leaning over George Zimmerman when the neighborhood watch volunteer fired the fatal shot into the unarmed teenager's chest, a forensic pathologist testified Tuesday. Dr. Vincent Di Maio, an expert testifying for the defense, gave a version of events that was consistent with the defense's theory of the deadly confrontation between Zimmerman, 29, and Martin, 17, on Feb. 26, 2012, in Sanford, Fla. Zimmerman, charged with second-degree murder, maintains he shot Martin in self-defense after the teenager attacked him. PHOTOS: The controversial case in pictures Di Maio said that he had examined the autopsy, toxicology and photographic evidence and concluded that the evidence was consistent with Zimmerman's statements to authorities that Martin was straddling him and that Zimmerman fired his gun with his right hand.
May 17, 2013 | By Jeff Gottlieb
A professional concert tour director testified Friday in the Michael Jackson wrongful death trial that a doctor's demand for $5 million to serve as the singer's tour physician "raised a red flag. " Marty Hom, who has spent 25 to 30 years as a tour director and tour manager, said that Dr. Conrad Murray's original demand was "outrageous. " Murray, a cardiologist who closed his practice to serve Jackson, eventually agreed to work for $150,000 a month. Hom, who testified as an expert witness, also said he would never tell a director he had checked out a doctor if he hadn't, a reference to claims by the Jackson family about an AEG executive.
January 14, 2013 | By Christopher Goffard, Kate Mather and Richard Winton, Los Angeles Times
Through three decades of fevered tabloid speculation and whispers of a deeper story, the official account never changed: Natalie Wood drowned accidentally. The 43-year-old star of "West Side Story," who couldn't swim, had been drinking the night before she was found floating face-down in frigid waters off Santa Catalina Island. When the L.A. County Sheriff's Department reopened the case in November 2011, around the 30th anniversary of her death, skeptics questioned the timing and doubted whether there was anything new to be learned.
December 9, 2004 | From Dow Jones/Associated Press
An economist testified Wednesday that an expert witness in a closely watched shareholder lawsuit overvalued stock options granted to former Walt Disney Co. President Michael Ovitz. Frederick C. Dunbar, a senior vice president at National Economic Research Associates and an expert witness for the defense, said he valued about 5 million options granted to Ovitz at about $60 million, although an expert witness for Disney shareholders valued the stock options at about $90 million.
June 17, 2013 | By Andrew Blankstein
A jury has acquitted on all counts a Sherman Oaks plastic surgeon who city prosecutors alleged had clandestinely videotaped female patients after they had undressed for medical examinations, officials said Monday. Dr. Lance Everett Wyatt, who specializes in plastic and reconstructive surgery, faced six misdemeanor counts related to what the city attorney's office characterized as illegal video recordings and "sexual battery and battery. " But attorney Kevin McKesson, working with investigator Scott Ross, said his client was the victim of a misunderstanding compounded by an incomplete investigation by Los Angeles Police Department detectives and investigators with the state medical board.
February 18, 2014 | By Elaine Woo
When Lewis Yablonsky was growing up in New Jersey in the 1930s, he was beaten by poor whites for being Jewish and by black gangs for being white. He committed petty thefts, ran crooked card games and carried a switchblade for protection. Some of his closest friends wound up behind bars. "I wasn't sure where I belonged," he told The Times years later. "But when my best friend went to prison for hijacking a fur truck … I realized I had to get on one side of the law or the other. " Yablonsky chose the straight path, using his rough-and-tumble youth as a springboard to a distinguished career: He became the "Sociologist With Street Smarts," as one headline described him, an authority on youth gangs, hippies and drug addicts whose personal experiences gave him insights other scholars lacked.
September 17, 1999 | From Times Wire Reports
A black man dragged to his death behind a pickup truck, allegedly by three white supremacists, was alive until he struck a culvert and was decapitated, an expert witness said in Bryan, Texas, before the prosecution rested in the trial of Lawrence Brewer. Forensic pathologist Tommy Brown, who conducted an autopsy on James Byrd, 49, said he could only pray Byrd was not conscious at his death. Brewer's prison friend, John King, was convicted of the murder in February and was sentenced to die.
October 26, 1987
A forensic psychiatrist who specialized in testifying as an expert witness for the defense in drug cases was found dead in his Hollywood home, clutching an empty hypodermic syringe in one hand, the Los Angeles Police Department said today. Police tentatively listed the death of Dr. Donald Martin Trockman, 46, as an accidental overdose and said traces of what appeared to be cocaine residue were found in the psychiatrist's bedroom, where his nude body was found.
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