NOTE: Course offerings change. Classes offered this semester may not be offered in future semesters.

246.1 sec. 1 - Criminal Trial Practice (Fall 2013)

Instructor: Charles Denton  (view instructor's teaching evaluations | profile)
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Units: 3
Meeting Time: Tu 6:25-9:05
Meeting Location: 140

Course Start: August 27, 2013
Class Number (formerly Course Control Number) (Non-1Ls): 49592

Course Description: This course focuses upon the courtroom application of criminal law principles and practices. Students will prepare and present opening statements, direct and cross examination, documentary and demonstrative evidence, and closing arguments. They will also gain a practical understanding of common issues in criminal law, including bail, sentencing, preliminary hearings, ethics and misconduct and motions to suppress.

The format will be hands-on and participatory, and the emphasis will be on learning practical techniques for shaping the evidence, using the law, and exploiting the courtroom to create a coherent and convincing case theory. All performances will be videotaped and the course will culminate in a half-day jury trial.

Class enrollment will be determined by the beginning of the second class meeting. Therefore, all students interested in enrollment should be present for both the first and second classes. Preference will be given to third year students and those who have not taken a trial practice class, but there are typically openings for other students as well.

Instructor Biography: Charles Denton is in his 30th year as an attorney with the Alameda County Public Defender's Office. Nearly all of that time has been spent in the courtroom. Mr. Denton has litigated hundreds of motions and hearings and has tried nearly every kind of criminal case -- from drunk driving to the death penalty. He is one of the most prolific lecturers on trial practice and criminal litigation in the state and a well-recognized expert on criminal law and procedure. He is currently the author of Criminal Defense Jury Instructions: California Criminal Jury Charges. For nearly a decade, he was been one of the principal authors of California Continuing Education of the Bar's Recent Developments in Criminal Law Practice as well as a contributor to their California Criminal Law: Procedure and Practice. His written manuals and practice guides are highly acclaimed and widely published. This is Mr. Denton's 16th year teaching at Boalt Hall.


This course satisfies the Experiential Requirement.

Exam Notes: T
Course Category: Simulation Courses
This course is cross-listed in the following categories:
Criminal Law
Litigation and Procedure
Public Law and Policy
Social Justice and Public Interest

If you are the instructor or their FSU, you may add a file like a syllabus or a first assignment to this page.

A reader will be used in this class.

Required Books are in blue

  • Trial Techniques
    Edition: 9th
    Publisher: Aspen Publishers
    ISBN: 9781454822332
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: $130.00
    Price Source: user provided
  • Modern Trial Advocacy
    Lubet, Steven
    Edition: 4th
    Publisher: N.I.T.A.
    ISBN: 9781601561275
    Copyright Date: To Be Determined
    Price: 85.00
    Price Source: user provided

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