E.F. (a 15 year old) faced serious charges of robbery and multiple counts of assault with a stun gun. The District Attorney would not negotiate and demanded that she plea to the top charge. We knew that E.F. would have to testify in her defense and prepared her. Last week, the Court acquitted her of robbery and two counts of assault with a stun gun.
How did we get such a great outcome? Preparation and trial skills.
On cross-examination, the officer was forced to admit that he had been guilty of domestic violence. He then became hostile on the stand and evasive. Adamantly, he denied throwing anything at E.F. Cell phone video footage suggested otherwise as one could see E.F. turn around quickly and an item could be seen on the ground that appeared to be a strap. The officer lost his credibility on the stand.
Meanwhile, E.F. testified that she was with her friends at a local grocery store when they took bottles of alcohol without paying. Loss prevention demanded that they be returned. E.F. returned the bottle she had, but loss prevention continued to follow her. One officer in particular became hostile and pulled her bag, ripping it. He then took the strap with the metal buckle and threw at her, hitting her in the back of the head. Frightened and scared that these football size men would assault her, she pulled out a taser and displayed it to get them to back off. For defending herself from this security guard’s aggression, E.F. was charged with robbery and assault with a stun gun. However after her testimony, she was acquitted of all charges except for shop-lifting.