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  1. #1

    Default Innocent, Still Being Charged

    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Indiana
    I was walking home with 2 of my friends and one of them stole a moped. Myself and the other innocent friend kept walking. Then we heard gunshots. Yet we were not a part of it. Now the guy firing the shots said that we all went up in his driveway. I only have a public defender. How do I prove my innocence?
    They are charging myself and my innocent friend with Theft. And the friend that stole the moped with burglary. He is a minor and had his trial yesterday. I witnessed against him. I had also learned in the trial that the guy is trying to say that we tried to steal a bmx bike as well. Yet this is untrue. I am worried that the victim making these false claims will have more of a credible testimony since he is a teacher. And now that I testified against my friend who was guilty, I dont know what he is gonna say about us, maybee he could become vindictive.
    At times I get frustrated and I wanna take a plea bargain just because its not like it says in the constitution. I must prove my innocence, not how it should be. They should have to prove me guilty. And if that were the case then I would dance because there is no evidence on something that hadn't happened. Yet that is not the case. We have a statement against us. How do I prove that I am innocent?

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Innocent, Still Being Charged

    Quote Quoting makinggraves
    View Post
    My question involves criminal law for the state of: Indiana
    I was walking home with 2 of my friends and one of them stole a moped. Myself and the other innocent friend kept walking. Then we heard gunshots. Yet we were not a part of it. Now the guy firing the shots said that we all went up in his driveway. I only have a public defender. How do I prove my innocence?
    They are charging myself and my innocent friend with Theft. And the friend that stole the moped with burglary. He is a minor and had his trial yesterday. I witnessed against him. I had also learned in the trial that the guy is trying to say that we tried to steal a bmx bike as well. Yet this is untrue. I am worried that the victim making these false claims will have more of a credible testimony since he is a teacher. And now that I testified against my friend who was guilty, I dont know what he is gonna say about us, maybee he could become vindictive.
    At times I get frustrated and I wanna take a plea bargain just because its not like it says in the constitution. I must prove my innocence, not how it should be. They should have to prove me guilty. And if that were the case then I would dance because there is no evidence on something that hadn't happened. Yet that is not the case. We have a statement against us. How do I prove that I am innocent?
    I don't know where to start, so I guess I'll address this in reverse order.

    You aren't being asked to prove your innocence; the state is being asked to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you're guilty. You can literally sit quiet in trial, ask no questions, and present no arguments to then make the case that they haven't met their burden.

    But it sounds like to me you're saying they do have at least some evidence to prove your guilt. So, if you say nothing, the jury might conclude the state met its burden. If that's the case, then what you have to do during the course of the trial is to discredit the government's evidence against you.

    A lawyer, yes even a PD, will be of great benefit in helping you to do this. By the way, most PDs do it because they are passionate about the job. It's not like a place where flunkies hang out; most of them turn down high paying jobs because they believe in the work.

    I understand you're convinced you did nothing wrong. However, just repeating in your post here that you're innocent and the claims are false doesn't give anyone a lot to go on. The facts you've provided are rather bare, which is to say you haven't told us a lot in the way of what happened. But you sure have given us a lot of adjectives about your view of the events that went down without telling us the events.

    But, going on what you have said . . .

    You were with some friends. One of them stole a moped. The evidence that you all stole it comes in, from what I gather, by way of some guy's assertion that he witnessed it. Witness' observations are indeed evidence. So, there is evidence against you on which the state may reasonably rely in prosecuting you.

    (Again, a lawyer can help you here)

    The way you attack an eye witness statement is by bringing up thing which call into question either the person's propensity to lie, or likelihood to be mistaken.

    You do this by - and you have to pick what is pertinent to you (again because there are few details) - bringing into question the witness' ability to see because: time of time (was it nighttime when this happened?), his position in relation to what he claims to have seen (was it physically possible?), the ability to clearly identify you (again, was it nighttime? well lighted?) and things of that nature.

    Or maybe he's a pathological liar.

    But, you were with a friend who you admit did steal something. It's reasonable that if he looked out and saw three people in a group, and then saw one member of the group stealing something, to conclude that all of you were in it. That is an assumption on his part. So, a fair thing to bring up at your trial (again - attorney time here), is whether he actually saw you participate in taking the moped.

    Did you know your friend was going to steal the moped? Did you egg him on?

    What is the state presenting as its theory of the case? Accessory?

    What's the gunshot all about it? How is this relevant to your story?

    What difference does the BMX bike later on have? I didn't see that you said you're charged with an attempt to steal anything.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Innocent, Still Being Charged

    To make the story more clear. I (RL), BH, and TG were walking home from the park at night around 3 AM. We were walking through a neighborhood on the way to my house from the park. As we got to an intersection TG saw a garage door opened and stopped me from talking to say that "we should check it out". So myself (RL) and (BH) continued walking towards my house in gesture that we were not cool with that idea. As we were walking we heard (TG) pass us with the moped. He asked us to help him and (BH) stated "put that sh!t back", and I stated "you know you can't take that to my moms house". Then we heard gunshots. We all ran. (BH) got caught at gunpoint and told the story to police. (TG) And I went to my house and were in my room in the basement. I have had that room since I was in 3rd grade. And basically only use the window when I enter and exit the house. So when I heard knocks on the door I exited the window and climbed up the fire escape ladder. Once I exited the fire escape I was spotted by police and arrested. They asked me if I understood my rights and I told them no to avoid interigation. I had recently went to court to testify against (TG). He claimed that he was not even there and that he was only at my mothers house to pick up a pair of pants. While I was at court they had a picture of a bmx bike. They also questioned me if we had tryed to take this bmx bike. The state in the begining was charging all of us with burglary. BH and my case went to a probable cause hearing and got dropped to attempted theft. TG's charges remained at burglary. When I went into my PD's appointment he stated that I was being charged with theft. I really hope I had made this more clear. I appreciate your help. This is quite nervewrecking for me. Since I went to jail for 3 days my sleeping pattern has become unstable. And at times if I wake up in the night and its pitch black I will freak out and can't sleep without a light on.
    Let me know if you need more information. I think I may have given enough.

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