In To Kill a Mockingbird, what are the main points in Heck Tate's evidence, and what does Atticus show in his cross examinaion  of Sheriff Tate?

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mshurn's profile pic

Posted on (Answer #1)

Heck Tate testifies first that Mayella was not examined by a doctor. He then testifies that she had been beaten mostly around her head and that "she had a black eye comin'." Atticus' questions lead Heck to realize that it was Mayella's right eye that had been injured and that most of the injuries to her head occurred on the right side. This is enormously significant because Heck's testimony establishes that Mayella's injuries would have been inflicted by a left-handed person.

Atticus understands the importance of Heck's testimony. When Bob Ewell testifies after Heck Tate, Atticus establishes clearly that Ewell is left-handed. Atticus later establishes that Tom Robinson's left arm is crippled, making his left hand useless. Because of Heck's testimony, it becomes very clear that Bob Ewell most likely attacked Mayella, and that Tom Robinson could not have inflicted the injuries to her head and right eye.

cdd69's profile pic

Posted on (Answer #2)

Two Main Points

1: She wasn't examined by a doctor.

2: She was beaten.

He shows that Mayella was beaten on her right side of her face, which means the beater is left handed. Tom is right handed but Bob Ewell is left handed, plus Tom got his left hand stuff in a cotton gin, which means his left hand would be useless.

zumba96's profile pic

Posted on (Answer #3)

Atticus says she was not examined by a doctor and also that she was beaten. He uses his facts to narrow down who the culprit might be and since she was beaten on her right side, the person who beat her would be left handed. Bob is left handed and Tom cannot use his left hand so this would finalize who beat her. 

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