Deborah on Investigations

St. Paul, MN criminal defense attorney Deborah Ellis explains investigation cases.

Contact Deborah Ellis

Email: [email protected]

Phone: (651) 288-3554


Well, investigation is a very important in looking for reasons, basis to challenge the credibility of the accuser. And if somebody is testifying for the prosecutor and has prior convictions for theft or crimes of dishonesty or even if they haven’t gotten a conviction if they’ve been shown to be a liar, an unreliable in other circumstances then you can use that to show that their version should not be believed. And sometimes those records are contained in school, mental health, hospital records and there’s a whole process by which we can get those but it takes a court order and a court review.

So a person’s hospital and mental health and school records are not just available for the asking. I can’t just subpoena them because there’s private data in them but we can obtain them by showing a judge that we believe that there are records out there that would helpful information to the defense, then the court does an in camera or private review and then disseminates what is appropriate to both of the parties. So knowing that process and where to look for potential impeaching or helpful information is something that I’d say Susan Johnson as an investigator is she’s an ace at that.