Credible witness

credible witness

n. a witness whose testimony is more than likely to be true based on his/her experience, knowledge, training and appearance of honesty and forthrightness, as well as common human experience. This is subjective in that the trier of fact (judge or jury) may be influenced by the demeanor of the witness or other factors. (See: credibility)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

CREDIBLE WITNESS. A credible witness is one who is competent to give evidence, and is worthy of belief. 5 Mass. 219 17 Pick. 134; 2 Curt. Ecc. R. 336. In deciding upon the credibility of a witness, it is always pertinent to consider whether he is capable of knowing the thing thoroughly about which he testifies. 2. Whether he was actually present at the transaction. 3. Whether he paid, sufficient attention to qualify himself to be a reporter of it; and 4. Whether he honestly relates the affair fully as he knows it, without any purpose or desire to deceive, or suppress or add to the truth.
     2. In some of the states, as Delaware, Illinois, Maine, Maryland, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Virginia, wills must be attested by credible witnesses. See Attesting Witness; Competent Witness; Disinterested Witness; Respectable Witness; and Witness.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in classic literature ?
It was not a night in which any credible witness was likely to be straying about a cemetery, so the three men who were there, digging into the grave of Henry Armstrong, felt reasonably secure.
Ham Peggotty, who went to the national school, and was a very dragon at his catechism, and who may therefore be regarded as a credible witness, reported next day, that happening to peep in at the parlour-door an hour after this, he was instantly descried by Miss Betsey, then walking to and fro in a state of agitation, and pounced upon before he could make his escape.
Every detail of the damaging circumstances that occurred in the graveyard upon that morning which all present remembered so well was brought out by credible witnesses, but none of them were cross- examined by Potter's lawyer.
There were a great many speculations about the sexton's fate, at first, but it was speedily determined that he had been carried away by the goblins; and there were not wanting some very credible witnesses who had distinctly seen him whisked through the air on the back of a chestnut horse blind of one eye, with the hind-quarters of a lion, and the tail of a bear.
The testimony of two credible witnesses as opposed to that of only one.
However, court chairwoman Ann Roberts said: ``We find the prosecution witness to be a credible witness and despite the previous good character of the defendant we don't believe her evidence.
Since "the Sacraments...are at the very core of priestly ministry," there is a "need for credible witness to the faith in all aspects of priestly life and in [the priest's] respect for and celebration of the Sacraments."
Mr Matthews had told the hearing that Miss A was not a credible witness and had made a series of "wild and unsubstantiated allegations".
Asked if he still sees Napoles as a credible witness, Ejercito only said that "the so-called Napolists seem to have muddled the issue."
Edward Snowden, the American intelligence whistleblower, appears a credible witness, who swapped a comfortable life in Hawaii for exile or, should he return home to the USA, most likely a spell in jail, because he objected to intrusive electronic surveillance.
"A very credible witness has come forward," Heller told the throngs of reporters and photographers.
Sheriff Derek Pyle said that while he did not think Ross was any risk to the public, the victim had been a credible witness and "he was in no doubt about the circumstances" of events.