character witness

(redirected from character witnesses)
Also found in: Dictionary, Thesaurus.

character witness

n. a person who testifies in a trial on behalf of a person (usually a criminal defendant) as to that person's good ethical qualities and morality both by the personal knowledge of the witness and the person's reputation in the community. Such testimony is primarily relevant when the party's honesty or morality is an issue, particularly in most criminal cases and civil cases such as fraud.

References in periodicals archive ?
Mr Walker said it was likely that character witnesses would be called, including senior police officers, and it would be appropriate if the trial judge was from outside the area.
Two other character witnesses also spoke up in defence of Isaac, describing him as "helpful" and "fair".
Character witnesses for Spencer said while he had been an alcoholic he had never been violent or aggressive.
Finally to play the race card is, in my opinion, a very cheap shot, especially as Mr Ahmed said: "I don't know if there was a racial aspect as well." And for all the character witnesses that have written in I ask this, what sort of person judges their opinion on thousands of hardworking police officers on the actions of one officer who dealt with some illegal parking?
Mr Fussell called character witnesses who spoke up for him.
Christopher Hotten QC, defending, called two character witnesses as the trial continued yesterday.
But when it came to the crunch both sides put across relatively concise cases, excluding many character witnesses and most of the promised glitterati.
The findings suggest Maharaj, whose senten-ce was commuted to 50 years' imprisonment in 2002, when Newmarket trainer Clive Brittain was among his character witnesses, is the victim of a miscarriage of justice and add credibility to theories that he was framed over the shooting of a Jamaican drug trafficker and his son, Derrick and Duane Moo Young, in October 1986.
Murray, who has no previous convictions, denied the offences and spent a week in the witness box and called almost two dozen patients as character witnesses.
"There are a number of character witnesses who will be called," said his barrister Katherine Dunn.
As other well-known people were appearing as character witnesses, Sir Tim agreed to speak about King's reputation for honesty in his business affairs.
Team-mates could be called as witnesses to the alleged incidents oras character witnesses.