A witness is a person who has seen or heard something directly. Witnesses are important because they can verify facts and information, especially in situations that involve a trial.

  • The police spoke with a witness who saw a young man steal a woman’s purse.
  • Several witnesses came forward to share what they knew about a car accident.
  • The trial was conducted with four different witnesses. Each witness corroborated (verified and supported) the defendant’s claim that he was not present at the scene of the crime.
  • Following the shooting, no witnesses came forward because they feared retaliation from the person who pulled the trigger.
  • An eyewitness to the murder gave testimony that sealed the fate of the defendant. (The word "eyewitness" is used when a person saw something with his or her eyes. It’s the almost the same things as "witness.")
  • It’s hard to prove a person’s guilt in a trial if there aren’t any witnesses who can come forward to speak.


The man in the witness stand was asked several uncomfortable questions about his personal life.

The word "witness" can also be used as a verb.

  • Because Mary witnessed a crime, she was issued a subpoena to appear in court and testify.
  • If you witness any unusual activity in your neighborhood, you might want to call the police department.
  • Children who witness a lot of violence in their homes may become emotionally scarred by these experiences.

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January 22, 2020