WolfVision in Legal and Courtroom Technology
Posted on Monday, January 9, 2012
As technology advances, the relationship between the legal world and applied science continues to expand. Progress in the legal technology market is essential and by utilizing the latest tools, courtrooms continue to see improvements in court processes. WolfVision Visualizers have been on the forefront of this evolution. One organization that truly stands out in this endeavor is The Center for Legal and Court Technology (CLCT), a joint initiative between The College of William & Mary and the National Center for State Courts. Located in the law school in Williamsburg, Virginia, CLCT's primary mission is clear: "To improve the administration of justice through the use of technology."
Chancellor Professor of Law Fred Lederer, Director of CLCT explains, "The age of high-technology courtrooms really began with the installation of document cameras, which permitted lawyers to show judges and juries images of key pieces of evidence, whether documents or physical items such as guns, knives, and drugs. They continue to be an essential courtroom technology, as seen in the McGlothin Courtroom at William & Mary Law School."
Deeply involved in judicial and legal education and training, courtroom design, and special needs assessments, CLCT is a world center for empirical and legal research on courtroom technology. The Center holds legal technology demonstrations and discussions for jurists, lawyers, law faculty, court administrators, technologists, and architects from around the world. At the heart of CLCT is the McGlothlin Courtroom, a revolutionary blend of technology and courtroom design. The courtroom contains the latest innovations in information and presentation technology.
A key element since the courtroom's inception is the WolfVision VZ-9plus³. The Visualizer "is incredibly easy to use and install," said Martin Gruen, Deputy Director of Courtroom Design and Technology for CLCT. "The latest VZ-9plus³ model includes features that have made it ideal for courtroom and classroom training applications." As part of an extensive training regimen, lawyers and court technologists can attend CLCT's A/V training courses to learn to operate, install, and maintain this equipment.
”We are really impressed with the quality of the optical systems, a built-in preview monitor, and the laser markers that quickly enables counsel to emphasize points of the document," he adds. As part of the Legal Skills program, all William & Mary Law School students try simulated cases using the Courtroom and its technology. In addition, the Law School's Trial Advocacy participants bring their cases to trial in the Courtroom, and the Law School's Trial Team and National Moot Court teams rely on the Courtroom to prepare for their competitions. Professor Fred Lederer states, "Critically, counsel at trial has access to a WolfVision VZ-9plus³ Visualizer at the podium and is used by lawyers to give opening statements, present evidence, and make closing arguments. The Visualizer is superb. Not only does it give high quality images, you always know what you're going to show on the courtroom displays because of the VZ-9's built-in small monitor." CLCT also conducts annual experimental trials, or "laboratory trials," that test the innovative use of technology for dispute resolutions. The trials simulate real world cases with the application of new or prototype technology. Past lab trials have included a simulated multi-continent terrorism case and the world's first known courtroom use of holographic evidence and virtual reality. The WolfVision Visualizer is a critical element to arguments for the prosecution and defense, as well as evidence display, and courtroom telepresence.