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In To Kill a Mockingbird, briefly summarize Sheriff Heck Tate's testimony.

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leah30klassen | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 8, 2013 at 7:47 PM via iOS

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In To Kill a Mockingbird, briefly summarize Sheriff Heck Tate's testimony.

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 8, 2013 at 10:14 PM (Answer #1)

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Sheriff Tate is the first person to take the stand during the trial of Tom Robinson. He is first questioned by the prosecutor, Horace Gilmer, who discovers that the sheriff first learned of the attack on Mayella when Bob Ewell arrived at Tate's office claiming that "some nigger'd raped his girl." Sheriff Tate "found her lying on the floor in the middle of the front room... pretty well beat up." Tate told Gilmer that Mayella identified Tom Robinson as her attacker, and when he asked if Tom "took advantage of her... she said yes he did."

Atticus's questions revealed some other important information.

  • Mayella was never seen by a doctor since Tate believed "it wasn't necessary." (Bob later claimed that he would not waste money on a doctor.)
  • Tate told Atticus that Mayella had been "beaten around the head" and was "bunged up" on the right side of her face.
  • There were also "finger marks on her gullet... all around her throat."

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