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Browsing in Civil > General Trial Procedures >

Judge Kristi Culver Kapetan

  Judge Kristi Culver Kapetan
Krystal Sullivan
Neomi Carrisales
(559) 457-6316
(559) 457-1624
  1. Schedule:
    Morning trial sessions will begin at 9:00. A lunch break will be taken at 12:00. The afternoon session will begin at 1:30. Evening recess will be taken at 3:25 on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, depending on the Court's law and motion calendar. On Monday, evening recess will be taken at 4:30. Fridays are dark for trial purposes. These times are subject to modification based upon other calendars that may need to be completed by the Court and the progress of the trial. Counsel is expected to be punctual and ready to proceed on time. This includes having witnesses available when needed. No continuances or delays will be permitted due to witness unavailability. If counsel does not have witnesses available to testify it is the equivalent of resting.
  2. Exhibits:
    1. Exhibits shall be exchanged between counsel before commencement of trial and must be pre-marked; preferably in the anticipated order or presentation to the extent possible. Trial will not begin until this is completed.
    2. All exhibits, regardless of who marks them, shall be marked in numerical order. The exhibits must be separated by tabs indicating their number.
    3. Photographs shall be marked as separate exhibits.
    4. Counsel shall jointly prepare a single, joint exhibit list which accurately describes each exhibit being marked. An example of a joint exhibit list can be found by clicking here.
    5. Exhibits shall be provided to the court in one or more binders, as necessary.
    6. Counsel shall meet and confer before trial to agree upon foundational issues, and to stipulate to the admissibility of exhibits to the extent possible. The specific objection and which party is objecting shall be listed next to the description of the exhibit on the joint exhibit list. If objections are not noted on the joint exhibit list, objections may be waived. This must be submitted to the court prior to the parties calling their first witness.
    7. Counsel may not show an exhibit to a witness for any purpose unless it has been pre-marked for identification.
    8. Absent a stipulation, counsel may not display any exhibit to the jury unless it has been received into evidence.
  3. 21 prospective jurors will be seated for voir dire. Voir dire has specific and limited purposes. These do not include instructing the jury on the law or ingratiating counsel or counsel's side with the jurors. CCP section 222.5 will be strictly enforced with or without objection from opposing counsel. Challenges for cause will be expressed in the hallway after all counsel has completed their voir dire.
  4. Counsel may walk through the well and approach witnesses to discuss exhibits without permission. Ask before you approach the bench. Otherwise you are free to move about the courtroom.
  5. Counsel must jointly prepare and provide the clerk with a list of prospective witnesses and put the names on the Elmo machine for jury selection. Alternatively, counsel may submit a thumb drive or other disc with the prospective witnesses' names for display to the jury.
  6. Counsel must identify which witnesses will be testifying each day. Counsel must notify opposing counsel which witnesses will be called the next day before leaving the courtroom for the day.
  7. Speaking objections are not permitted, nor is argument regarding objections unless invited by the Court. State the legal objection only. Likewise, counsel should never suggest to any witness, with a speech appended to the objection, what the witness should say or has forgotten to say.
  8. Jury instructions and verdict forms must be submitted before the second week of trial, or on the second day of trial if the trial is expected to last less than one week. Counsel must meet and confer and submit a packet of all requested instructions to which there is no objection and a separate packet of instructions as to which there are objections. If objections are made to any jury instructions on other than relevancy grounds, the objecting party must also submit an instruction that is believed to be non-objectionable.
  9. Counsel shall lodge with the clerk all depositions to be used in the trial. No reading from depositions (other than for purposes of impeachment) is permitted without first giving the court and opposing counsel notice of each page and line reference intending to be read. Certified copies are acceptable as long as the parties so stipulate.
  10. If deposition transcripts are to be read to the jury, counsel are expected to meet and confer in advance regarding any objections that will be offered to any of such testimony so as not to take up the time of the court or the jury. If objections to any of the testimony are raised, they must be addressed outside of the jury's presence and without inconveniencing the jury. Failure to comply with this rule may result in counsel waiving objections to the testimony.
  11. A short, non-argumentative statement of the case for reading to the jury during jury selection must be jointly filed at the same time as motions and limine are filed.
  12. THE COURT DOES NOT PROVIDE A COURT REPORTER. COUNSEL MUST MAKE ARRANGEMENTS TO HIRE A COURT REPORTER IF THEY WANT A COURT REPORTER FOR THE TRIAL. Please see the Fresno Superior Court website for information regarding securing court reporters for trial.