Presentation on theme: "Evidence-based Prosecution For Prosecutors. Evidence-based Prosecution Adapted from a CLE presentation by Arlene Markarian, 6.16.04, “Evidence-based Prosecution.”"— Presentation transcript:
Why? Victims reluctant to testify against family member or caregiver. Victims may be unable to testify due to mental or physical impairments, or death. Stop perpetrators before they cause death.
Gather evidence If the victim does testify, you need to corroborate to meet the standard of “beyond a reasonable doubt.” If the victim does not testify, you will need evidence to prove the crime and the identity of the perpetrator. Gather evidence as if it were a homicide case.
Photograph Victim Victim’s injuries Defendant’s injuries or lack of injuries All bloody/blood stained items Property damage Messages/numbers on caller ID box Entire home/crime scene Any property taken into custody
Seize/voucher evidence Weapons Containers of assaultive liquids Drugs or drug paraphernalia Alcoholic beverages/empty bottles, cans Damaged property Items use to restrain, gag, torture Victim’s and/or defendants diary/calendar documenting abuse
Seize/voucher (continued) Letters with envelopes Answering machine tapes or voice mail messages Clothing, sheets, blankets or other items With blood stains [place in paper bag] Sheets, etc. with feces/urine stains Bloody/torn clothes (victim and defendant)
Seize/voucher (continued) Martial arts paraphernalia Financial documents Everything
Eye, ear and nose witnesses To crime charged To previous incidents of abuse Person who called 911
Excited utterances Document excited utterance by victim. Document victim’s demeanor. Check for excited utterances to friends, EMTs, first police at scene, doctors, nurses, 911 caller.
Defendant’s statements Document all statements, no matter how insignificant they may seem. Check statements made to neighbors, landlord, friends/family, employer, EMTs, hospital personnel, jail/prison officials, parole/probation officers. Get a statement. Read defendant his Miranda rights and try it.
Expert medical opinion Ask for a release from the victim so you can obtain medical records: – To explain force required to inflict injury. – To give expert opinion. Note: Only if victim has capacity to sign consent
Check for past DIRs/61s/OOPs Check other jurisdictions where defendant lived. Check for abuse with this or other victims.
Documentary evidence Such as defendant’s prison records Defendant’s home and cell phone records Parole/probation records Previous 911 calls Police records from other jurisdictions Prior Orders of Protection from this or other jurisdictions
Seize all medications Document medical information
Animal abuse Did defendant injure or kill a family pet? Ever threaten to kill or injure a pet? Does the pet appear neglected?
Defendant’s background Psychiatric history/hospitalization? Drug/alcohol abuse? Special medications?
Charges Consider “bump-ups” (misdemeanor to felony because of prior conviction). Consider Reckless Endangerment PL§120.25 & 120.20 Consider Coercion PL§135 Consider Intimidation of/Tampering with a Witness PL§215 Consider larceny by Extortion, PL§155