I. Insufficient Evidence
The most common defense use in Criminal Defense is that there simply isn’t enough evidence to convict you of the charge. This could be from overzealous police officers/prosecutors that are overconfident in their own abilities. It could also someone lying, pointing the blame at you simply to gain something unrelated. It could even be a mistake, being in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Most common examples of this would be false allegations in Sex Crimes. Like it or not, Sex Crimes in California are one of the most heavily prosecuted of any crimes in our State. The goal is simple, and it makes sense; protect the children. But the cost of this for the accused is extremely severe. As discussed in the Sex Crimes section of this page, the bail amounts can be upwards of $350,000-$500,000 per alleged count, and those are typically stacked on top of each other for multiple offenses.
So it is likely that if you are accused of a Sex Crime, you are likely to sit in jail for a very long time, sometimes upwards of two years, before you are able to fight your allegations at a Trial. On top of this, you are facing sometimes the rest of your life behind bars based on these accusations. As horrible as that all sounds, the good thing to know is that your case can be winnable. False accusations happen all the time. Whether it is a child accusing you because someone put them up to it – maybe to gain leverage in a divorce proceeding. It could even be something as simple as you upset your child, and they heard about allegations like this on the internet, and they decide to get back at you for scolding them by making an accusation. Here, by showing that the person is lying, you are showing that there is insufficient evidence to convict you of the charge.
It doesn’t always have to be about lying, though, as the important and helpful part about Crimes in general, is that they all require elements in order to show completion of a criminal act. What that means is simply, if a charge require four elements, and three are proven, but one is not, then you are not guilty of that charge. Elements are different than factors, because all elements must be met to complete what is required, whereas factors do not necessarily need to all be shown.
For example, a Specific Intent crime generally means that you intended to do the actions that constituted the crime. Assault, for example, does not involve any touching, but essentially an attempt to commit a battery on another person. This can be as simple as you raising your fists in front of someone’s face, and rearing back to punch them – without ever actually punching them. But, you need to have specifically intended to do that act with your fists, for it to be a crime.
It is relatively obvious in the above example that you had intended to assault another person. But let’s say you’re walking down the street, and you are telling a very animated story and moving your hands around. Someone walks by, looks up to see you, and screams, startled by your hand movements. You, on the other hand, do not even see this other person walking, and clearly did not intend to scare them or “assault” them. In that example, you could not be found guilty of assault, because you lacked the intent, which is an element of the crime, to commit an assault. For more information on the defense of insufficient evidence, call Ontario Criminal Defense attorney Adam Jackson today for a free consultation and free case evaluation. Call today at 909-939-7126. Located in Ontario, CA.