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  1. #11

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    Arresting officer and DA do not realize that serial numbers are the only way to track merchandise. UPC codes on the merchandise in this case, only point to the manufacturer and can be bought at several retail stores and online. We tried to get this across to the DA at the preliminary in general sessions court, but they think they can convict us on circumstantial evidence. The lawyer I had for the preliminary stated after the hearing that this was the weakest case he had ever seen. Then he asked for $6,000.00 for a retainer for criminal court. The arresting officer and DA are convinced that they know what store this merchandise came from that was found in my co-defendants vehicle, but do not have any evidence to support it. As my lawyer said in the preliminary, they are going on a hunch only. They are trying to bluff a plea bargain out of me and it's not going to happen. Basically, under the way this police department and DA operate, if you are stopped, and anything in your vehicle does not have a receipt for it, they will seize it and try to convict for theft of property. They seized everything down to a dog food bowl and underwear. Still in evidence after 8 months. They would auction it off if they win. Tried to seize my co-defendants truck, only thing that stopped them was the finance company. Thanks for your help.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    38,867

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    depending on what store is involved they may actually have a different UPC than any other store. The larger stores often have models of appliances and such or clothing that appears identical to merchandise sold in other stores but have some very subtle differences. Along with those subtle differences is a different UPC. No idea if that applies to what you stole but just tossing it out there as a possibility of the UPC argument not being all you think it is.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,485

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    I suspect that all of the items seized had packaging or tags that indicated recent theft (or purchase) and that is what they are going on. Do they have video or your co-defendant in the store? Any witnesses to you being in the store? Statements as to being in the store or stealing the property? Statements that were proven incorrect (i.e. that show you and/or your co-defendant are liars)?

    If all they have is the property alone, then it is a weak case. But, you will need a real attorney to make that case and to counter the witnesses on the stand. Go with the public defender before it's too late! Keep in mind that if you muck this up and you go to jail, you will not be able to argue ineffective counsel - you'll be stuck with the result unless you have grounds for appeal on other grounds and can somehow learn how to write an appeal from behind bars.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  4. #14

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    No, none of the items indicate any theft at all. They have general UPC codes that when looked up on the internet, put to numerous store that sell the exact item and online also. There is no video and there are no witnesses. The DA is trying to bluff me into accepting a deal and I will not. Also, I do not qualify for a public defender, so I have no chose but to try to go it alone. I did have an attorney in the general sessions preliminary and he said that it was the weakest case he had ever seen. The problem is, it's in a small town, up in the mountains, and they think they are going roll over someone and get away with it. Thanks for your help.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I did not steal any of these items. Some that were seized have receipts and some don't. They were all seized because it is a small town up in the mountains of tennesse and they think they can get away with it or drain someone of any money they have by all the court dates, hoping I will accept a deal. I will not accept any deals. All of the UPC's are manufacturers upc's and have been verified. When you type the numbers in online each and every number pulls up numerous stores that sell these items and can be purchased online also.

    - - - Updated - - -

    I recently went back to this town and purchased something at a local thrift store and kept the receipt and got a general statement from the clerk verifying what it was to show in court that an individual can buy various types of merchandise at even a thrift store. Would I need to subpeona the individual at that thrift store in order to have that evidence admitted in the trial? Thanks.

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Location
    OH10
    Posts
    17,019

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    That is irrelevant and the prosecutor will likely object to you wasting the courts time.

  6. #16

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    The intention would be to show that not everyone drives around with all of their receipts on their person and the arresting officer and the DA really appear to not know that serial numbers and upc's are different and I'm afraid if I can't find a way to introduce that fact into evidence some how, they will be able to convince a jury of that also.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    California
    Posts
    20,485

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    On cross examination you ask the prosecution witnesses if the UPC represents a specific item from a specific store? If they answer truthfully, or, that they do not know, you ask additional questions designed to capitalize on this lack of knowledge or emphasize the point that the UPC does not identify a specific item.

    Subpoenaing the thrift store clerk seems pointless to me.

    Look, if you want to avoid jail time you may need to break down and pay for an attorney if you have too much money or income to qualify for a court-appointed one. You could lose not because you are guilty, but that you are not capable of mounting a decent enough defense to cast even reasonable doubt on the state's case. It could be that paying a retainer for an attorney will be enough for the state to back off. If they know it's YOU they have to meet in court, they may not be too concerned.
    **********
    Retired Cal Cop Sergeant & Teacher

    Seek justice,
    Love mercy,
    Walk humbly with your God

    -- Courageous, by Casting Crowns ... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pkM-gDcmJeM

  8. #18

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    I appreciate your comments. I have a co-defendant I was in their vehicle when this occured. They have a court appointed attorney and I was hoping to ride their coat tails at the trial. What they aren't able to get done, I'm hoping I will be able to do. Thanks.

    - - - Updated - - -

    So I guess you are saying that it is up to the prosecutor to prove a case, even with circumstantial evidence, and my best bet is to dis-credit his lack of direct evidence? Due to the fact that I will not really be able to call any witnesses that are not directly connected to the case. The burden is on the State to prove it's case hopefully. I'm nervous about the people in this small mountain town being gullable to their DA.

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Posts
    38,867

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    all criminal cases require the prosecution to prove their claim beyond a reasonable doubt (note; not "all" doubt and what is considered reasonable is usually different than many people understand it to be)


    are the two of you being tried together?

    and one does not discredit a lack of direct evidence. One gives reason to doubt the evidence entered is adequate to prove beyond a reasonable doubt you are guilty. How to do that varies with the specific facts of the trial.

  10. #20

    Default Re: What Witnesses and Evidence Must a Public Defender Subpoena

    Can I ask you your opinion on this: Are records of a business(retail merchant), admissable in court, in a theft of property case, without the author of said report being in court as a witness? Without videotape or an eyewitness to a theft, can a report just all of a sudden pops up long after the alleged incident, be used as evidence(the report also does not state that their is video tape or an eyewitness, just a report of an incident). Thanks for your comments.

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