Bodycam Footage Helps Secure Not Guilty Verdict in Five Minutes
Nottingham crime solicitor advocate Andrew Wesley recently represented a client at trial before Nottingham Crown Court. The allegation was that his client had assaulted a teenager in the street with a stick. Fortunately, the aftermath of the incident was captured in police bodycam footage so the jury acquitted five minutes after retiring.
Client was a victim of anti-social behaviour
The background to the case was that Andrew’s client and his housemate had been subject to anti-social behaviour for eighteen months prior to this allegation. This had involved abuse, threats, damage to property and assaults. Although the police had been involved time and again, they advised our client that there was insufficient evidence to bring any of the culprits to justice.
The day prior to the allegation, both householders had suffered assaults and damage to the fencing of their address. The problems started again on the night of the allegation. The fence was damaged again, youths entered their garden, and threats were made.
As well as calling the police, our client’s housemate went onto the street to try and film those involved. She was hit with a stick so our client had to intervene and pull her back into their house.
The police were called again, but in the meantime a large group had gathered, including the parents of one of the alleged victims of an assault, and further threats were made.
Bodycam Footage captured initial complaint
The crowd dispersed because the police arrived, and our client and his housemate made a complaint. This was captured on bodycam footage. Unknown to them, however, one of the youths had turned matters around and claimed that she was the person assaulted by our client. Two of her friends backed her up in her story.
Andrew’s client elected to have his trial by jury which in this case was a wise choice. Although there were obvious problems with the prosecution case, a choice had been made to proceed.
Evidence before the jury that could not be challenged
Through careful preparation, Andrew was able to rely on evidence that could not be challenged by the prosecution so helping the jury decide that his client was not guilty. This included:
- the 999 call of the housemate that showed the witnesses could not have been telling the truth
- the injuries of the complainant were minor so not consistent with the assault described at all
- footage taken by our client showed the mood of the group after the incident to be threatening and abusive
- police bodycam footage captured the first complaints of our client and his housemate as well as their demeanour.
Both our client and his witness gave evidence well.
Although the prosecution witnesses also came over well before the jury, there was a large amount of evidence that at the very least suggested that they were not telling the truth. The jury took no time at all to come to that conclusion so our client was found not guilty.
Positive client feedback
We have been provided with feedback as to how we dealt with the case from beginning to end. It is particularly pleasing to be able to read comments such as:
Finally, we know the stress that police investigations or court proceedings place on both our clients and other people involved in the case. Our aim is to try and remove as much of that pressure as possible.
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