The mere accusation that a person has committed a sex crime (especially against a child) will turn that man’s life upside down. Loved ones and friends he thought he had will quickly turn their backs on him for fear the charge is true, but also if the charge is publicized (which it often is) to avoid association with him in the public eye. This is a time of vulnerability and will often be the person’s lowest point. We don’t judge our clients, period. Steve Brand has handled many of these cases and while other attorneys may choose not to handle these cases, Steve Brand welcomes these clients. The cases involving child sex abuse are so challenging because everyone in the criminal justice system wants to believe the child and for good reason (who wouldn’t want to believe a kid)? However, the danger of these cases is that some carry mandatory minimums of 25 years without the possibility of parole. The challenge is that while oftentimes there is no other evidence other than the allegation of the child, because people want so much to believe the child, these are cases where unintentionally, jurors, Judges, and prosecutors tend to strip an accused of his presumption of innocence and improperly shift the burden to the defense to prove why the child would lie. There actually is literature to indicate that people often cannot tell at all whether a child is telling the truth or not.
We are also in a climate where we are doing everything we can to combat the often skewed statistics put forth in the “Me Too,” movement. This starts taking away the presumption of innocence from accused who are charged with sexually assaulting adult females. We pride ourselves in being able to educate juries with real-world examples of women who have been proven to have made a false accusation of sexual assault against males. These are complex cases often requiring us to retain at times multiple experts and employ an investigator.
Handling violent crimes including murders and capital murders will often place the case in the media which poses its own challenges. We work with our clients to see if they want to respond to media accounts to take away the sting of the false prosecution narrative or, because the client would like to stay away from the public eye for hopes of more privacy, do we choose to let the media run its course and let them go on to the next big story so we can maintain somewhat of a private life for our client. All of these cases have numerous complex issues to deal with and the near 50 years of criminal law attorney experience of our firm embraces those challenges.
Capital Murder, Murder, Manslaughter and Criminally Negligent Homicide
There are two groupings of cases that prosecutors focus on the most: ones involving death, like these and sex cases. The reason this is important to know is that if you are charged with one of these offenses, the police and prosecutor’s offices will devote many resources to prosecuting these offenses. This requires a strong defense and often a defense team including experienced trial lawyers, a defense investigator, a DNA expert, a firearms/toolmarks examiner commonly known as a ballistics expert, a medical examiner and a forensic psychologist or psychiatrist. Continue reading...
These are the cases where you learn who your true friends are. The mere accusation of a sex crimes will send those you thought of as friends and co-workers and even some family members, running away from you just because of the accusation. It’s that much worse when the accusation involves a child. These are the cases which involve Aggravated Sexual Assault and Sexual Assault, Sexual Assault of a Child, Continuous Sexual Abuse of a Child, Possession of Child Pornography, Enticing a Minor, Improper Photo/Visual Recording, Indecency with a Child by Contact and Prostitution (although there are several more). The stigma and embarrassment of these cases will put the client in a very dark place. The sad thing is, there is often very little physical evidence in these cases, sometimes none, and the State will want a conviction on someone’s word alone. These cases are very political in terms of the amount of discretion a prosecutor has to dispose of the case because many groups have put pressure on prosecutors’ offices to never dismiss these types of cases regardless of what the evidence may show. Continue reading...
Any number of crimes may be placed in this category, but the ones most often seen are: Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon, Aggravated Robbery and Robbery, Burglary of a Habitation, Burglary of a Building and Aggravated Kidnapping and Kidnapping. These cases are extremely fact dependent and the defenses encompass a wide range—from alibi, to self-defense to necessity. There are also many ways to attack the lack of proper law enforcement investigation in these cases. For example, on a case of Aggravated Assault, oftentimes at night, the on-call detective may not wind up going out to the scene. So the scene gets processed by the less experienced patrol officers. There may be additional investigation later by a detective, but much evidence that would have been at the scene is now gone. We seize upon this to show how unfair it would be to the client to be convicted upon this type of shoddy evidence. Continue reading...
Contact our criminal defense team today by calling (512) 494-4070 or requesting a free consultation online now.