direct examination


: the first examination of a witness by the party calling the witness compare cross-examination

Examples of direct examination in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The jury listened inside the courtroom to audio of the direct examination portion of the testimony for a little over an hour before a brief recess. Justin Muszynski, Hartford Courant, 15 Mar. 2024 Thursday marks the third day of Pecker's direct examination by prosecutors and comes as members of Trump's legal team head to the Supreme Court to argue in favor of the former president's claim of presidential immunity. Peter Charalambous, ABC News, 25 Apr. 2024 During her direct examination questioning from defense attorney Shannon Smith on Thursday, Crumbley said being on ski patrol enabled her son and husband to ski for free. Tresa Baldas, Detroit Free Press, 2 Feb. 2024 Prosecutor Danielle Sassoon had run an effective direct examination, creating an easy-to-follow narrative. Elizabeth Lopatto, The Verge, 12 Oct. 2023 In direct examination, the defense is likely to ask Bankman-Fried to offer alternative explanations for the behaviors outlined in the testimony of his former colleagues, and perhaps address questions around his intentions and state of mind. WIRED, 25 Oct. 2023 Before defense attorneys could cross examine Franks, Jonker told the attorneys their cross examinations could only be as long as the testimony taken from direct examination carried out by the government, to the chagrin of Gibbons and Blanchard. Arpan Lobo, Detroit Free Press, 16 Aug. 2023 Michel’s lawyer David Kenner asked on direct examination. Daniel Barnes, NBC News, 19 Apr. 2023 After Meadors ended his direct examination, Jim Griffin stepped in front of Smith and unfurled an enormous blue tarp. Fox News, 6 Feb. 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'direct examination.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

circa 1859, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of direct examination was circa 1859

Dictionary Entries Near direct examination

Cite this Entry

“Direct examination.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Jun. 2024.

Legal Definition

direct examination

: the first examination of a witness by the party calling the witness compare cross-examination, redirect examination

Note: As a general rule, leading questions are not allowed on direct examination, but there are exceptions, as when the witness is shown to be hostile.

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