How Can CoCounsel help Criminal Practitioners?

Learn how CoCounsel helps attorneys practicing criminal law

Elaine Cheek avatar
Written by Elaine Cheek
Updated over a week ago

CoCounsel is an A.I. software platform that leverages huge advancements in large language models to perform a wide range of tasks for criminal practitioners.

Because CoCounsel has the ability to quickly understand and synthesize vast quantities of data, attorneys and other legal professionals can use this software platform to expedite document review, to prepare for hearings, to perform legal research and many other common legal tasks.

While most of the skills may seem geared towards those who practice civil or transactional law, many of CoCounsel’s skills translate well to criminal law.

Here is a list of currently available CoCounsel skills that can assist criminal practitioners and some examples of how to use those skills. These examples are not exhaustive, as CoCounsel’s potential is extensive.

Review Documents:

About the skill:

Looks for specific information within a single or a set of documents. This skill performs a thorough, line-by-line review of each document to find the answers to your questions. CoCounsel will generate a memo that answers each of your questions and identifies the specific page(s) of your document(s) that contain information that is responsive to your questions.

How to Use:

Review documents can review your police reports, indictments or charging documents, witness statements, medical records, etc. at lightning speed.

For example, after uploading your police report, you can ask CoCounsel questions such as:

  • Who was the arresting officer?

  • Who were the witnesses?

  • Where did the incident take place?

  • Did the arrestee make a statement to the police?

You could upload a client’s or defendant’s statement to the police, and ask questions such as:

  • Did the police read Miranda?

  • Did the defendant agree to speak to police?

  • Did the defendant ask for a lawyer?

  • Did the defendant make any admissions?

For more information on Review Documents, please see the following article from Casetext’s Help Center, “How Can I use CoCounsel to Review Documents?”

Search a Database:

About the skill:

Can sort through a large volume of documents (compiled litigation records, transcripts, etc.) in your firm’s database to find answers to your questions.

CoCounsel will then prepare a memo that summarizes the answer to your question and identifies the documents that answer your question. The memo will include excerpts from each document that CoCounsel identifies as relevant, with hyperlinks to each document.

This skill is the “needle in a haystack” skill because it can search an entire database for very specific information.

How to use:

If you have a brief bank, you can ask questions such as, “Please find all motions to suppress because of Fourth Amendment violations.”

If you have a database made up of your case file, you can ask questions such as, “Find every statement made by [Defendant’s Name],” or “Did [Complaining Witness Name] tell the police [relevant fact]?”

For more information on Search a Database, please see the following article from Casetext’s Help Center, “How Can I Use CoCounsel to Search a Database?”

Prepare for a Deposition:

About the skill:

Enter a sentence or two describing an upcoming deposition. You can briefly describe the type of case and the type of witness at issue using natural language, as if you were describing the deposition to a colleague. Based on your description, CoCounsel will prepare a list of deposition topics. You can delete any recommended topic by clicking on the trash can icon. You can ask the AI to recommend additional deposition topics by clicking on the button that says, “Generate more topics.” You can also add your own topics by clicking on the button that says, “Insert our own topics.” Once you approve the list of topics, click on the button that says, “Generate questions,” and CoCounsel will generate 4-5 questions that you can ask pertaining to each deposition topic.

How to use:

While criminal practitioners do not typically do depositions, CoCounsel’s Deposition skill can help you prepare for evidentiary hearings. Just enter a sentence or two describing an upcoming hearing, and CoCounsel will generate a detailed list of topics and questions for you. The more detailed the information you give, the more detailed the topics and questions will be.

As an example, you could give CoCounsel the following fact pattern:

  • I represent the defendant in a criminal case in a hearing on a motion to suppress a statement to police. The allegations are that my client tried to flee from the police and was in an automobile accident. My client was in the hospital and on morphine for pain when the police questioned him. I am trying to suppress the statement on the grounds that my client could not have understood the Miranda waiver while in the hospital, experiencing the effects of morphine and the effects from his injuries. I am questioning the officer who took the statement.

CoCounsel will then generate an outline for you. It can be a useful tool to get you started with a cross examination outline, or direct.

For more information on Prepare for a Deposition, please see the following article from Casetext’s Help Center, “How Can I Use CoCounsel to Prepare for a Deposition?


About the skill:

The “Summarize” skill streamlines dense language or legalese into a succinct summary. You can use this skill to distill any document or set of documents. You can manually upload those files from your computer, or select the files from an AllSearch database. Alternatively, you can just copy and paste the text that you would like CoCounsel to summarize into the text box. CoCounsel will generate summaries of the document(s) you provided. It will summarize multiple pages at a time and provide hyperlinks to the portions of each document that it summarized so you can match up CoCounsel’s summaries with different sections of your documents.

How to use:

The summarize skill can be used to summarize witness statements, police reports, expert reports, pleadings, etc. You can even use Summarize with jury instructions, to help make them easier to understand, and therefore easier to explain to your jury.

For more information on Summarize, please see the following article from Casetext’s Help Center, “How Can I Use CoCounsel to Summarize Documents?”

And, for more information on how to use CoCounsel to perform other tasks, please the the following article, “Can I Perform Tasks that are Not Covered by CoCounsel’s Skills?”

Finally, the following video demonstration offers valuable insights into how criminal law practitioners can use CoCounsel in their practice: CoCounsel for Criminal Practitioners

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