Gail Allan
Testimonies and courtroom time.
Wed Apr 13, 12:06

Jones if you've ever been in a courtroom you'll know it takes a lot more time to get the work done than just the time it would take to read the transcripts out loud. I was in a jury on a medical malpractice case. There couldn't have been more than ten witnesses, and none of them were on the stand for even a full day. The trial took a month. If you cut out all the lawyer talk, and just read out the testimony it would have taken just a few hours at best. Court takes lots more time than just reading out a transcript.

The Turner version of the transcript is definately truncated, and a mess, but that's not the court, court recorder, or the newspaper reporters fault. Turner is not an accurate picture of what was said, but unfortunately it's what we have, when we can't find either the Nugget, or Enterprise reports.

Just compare the Nugget's copy to Turner on Hatch's testimony to see how badly Hayhurst mangled the transcript.

In addition, not anywhere in either the Turner/Hayhurst, or the Nugget are there any transcripts of the legal wrangling between the Prosecution, and Defence lawyers, and the court. Just Objection, sustained, or overruled. This had to take time, lawyers do like to hear themselves talk. Neither Hayhurst or the Nugget found these legal conversations relevant enough to document them, but they did occur, and took up time.

For me to believe that there is a lot of what you call verbage missing I would have to believe that the Nugget, and Enterprise reporters missed the biggest story of their careers, and just closed their eyes to there rival newspaper leaving out all that relevant verbage, and all the witnesses read through the court transcript of their testimony, just said so what, and signed a defective document they had taken under oath. Sorry I just don't think that occurred. If either newspaper left off relevant testimony the other would have roasted them alive.

Is there missing information in Turner/Hayhurst, absolutely. And one day I hope someone digs up all the Nugget, and Epitaph pages on the trial, and makes it as easily available as Turner. But unlike the Coroner's Inquest pages now wonderfully available in the actual handwritten pages, the Spicer hearing originals are gone.

But if you compare the Coroner's Inquest transcripts to the Nugget's reporting it's bang on. Nothing missing.

As for the standards between 140 years ago, and the current day, I don't know if the standards have changed, but the law, tactics, and means of handling a case certainly have.

If you haven't already read it I suggest MURDER IN TOMBSTONE:The Forgotten Trial of Wyatt Earp. It's quite an eye opener about the different tactical, and legal differences between 1881, and contemporary legal handling of a trial. Not the same at all.

    • re: are there missing bits — Jones, Wed Apr 13 10:32
      Ike Clanton's testimony November 9-15, 1881 Ike spent four days in the court room. The entirety of his testimony can be read aloud in one hour. That's a lot of court room time for what little verb... more
      • Testimonies and courtroom time. — Gail Allan, Wed Apr 13 12:06
        • re: Testimonies and courtroom time — Jones, Wed Apr 13 13:18
          I've managed to dodge jury duty up to this point so I'll take your word for it. I didn't realize that only one hour of the spoken word was the norm for a weeks worth of testimony. Only the government... more
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