The Washington Post blogged Former Rep. Gary Condit’s testimony in the Chandra Levy murder trial today, and reading their coverage, I am still stunned that a witness in a murder trial could keep insisting that he wouldn’t answer questions that he considered “private” — and that he wasn’t ordered to answer the question.
Here’s part of their report:
Condit said he wasn’t invoking his right against self-incrimination and simply was choosing not to answer questions he considered private.
Hawilo turned to the judge, Gerald I. Fisher, telling him the question went to Condit’s credibility.
Fisher declared Condit non-responsive and that could affect how the jury judges the testimony of the man who was once the prime suspect in Levy’s disappearance, said Michael Starr, a former public defender in the District and now a lawyer with Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld.
Starr said the judge will be able to instruct the jurors that they may consider Condit’s non-responsiveness as a factor in weighing the credibility of his testimony.
And that could aid the defense, Starr said.
“In the broadest sense, if they don’t want him to be found credible by the jury, then his failure to answer a proper question helps them,” Starr said.
You can read the full coverage here.