Today my copy of Ray Moses’s “Jury Argument in Criminal Cases: A Trial Lawyer’s Guide (Second Edition)” arrived in the mail. (Bookmark the book’s website.) This is one of my favorite resources, but I had never gotten around to ordering a copy before now (Professor Moses doesn’t make it particularly easy to order) — I’d used it at one law library or another. This is a wonderful book.
It’s also a large book — almost 1500 pages of jury argument: law, advice, and examples. The examples are the heart of the book — a thousand pages (I guess) of snippets (a sentence or a paragraph or two) of jury argument in criminal cases. Many of the snippets are attributed to one criminal-defense lawyer or another, but most are unattributed. They are arranged by category. For example, there are 146 arguments (for both sides of the bar) on reasonable doubt. There are 69 arguments on self-defense (we Texans love our self-defense), including five arguments on the duty to retreat. If you try criminal cases to juries, you want this book.
Here, for your perusal, are the preface and table of contents. If you can’t find something in Professor Moses’s book that is worth the $200 pricetag, you’re not paying attention.