Tag Archives: TESTIMONY

There is no evidence, but I am accused of recklessly endangering?

Q: My mother and her husband engaged in a verbal argument, it got physical, she proceeded towards my location further down the street not knowing I was at my girlfriend’s residence on the porch. While making her way towards me, she then collapsed, and hit her skull on the ground. It appeared to me as an overdose, while kneeling to her aid I told my girlfriend to call 911. Her husband began to get irate, insisting they leave, and she did not need medical attention. I ignored him, moments later her he reached for my fully loaded firearm. It’s was holstered up against my spine, while I was kneeling to my mother the position became comprised, I realized what he was attempting to do, and struck him with my left elbow and gained control over my weapon with my right hand, I then removed the gun from behind me to my side, barrel facing towards the ground. Later the police alleged that I put the firearms to my step father’s head. I am now being charged with recklessly endangering another person. If this is a one person’s word against another’s, you have a good shot at a not-guilty verdict at trial. (Pittsburgh, PA)

A: I am assuming your mother’s husband alleges you pointed the gun at his head. That would be the evidence. Evidence does not necessarily have to be in the form of videotape. So, as you have just learned, charges can be based on victim testimony. You have the right to defend yourself and counter the victim’s story with your own testimony and testimony of other witnesses if there are any. I suggest since this case involves a gun, a felony and potential jail sentence, that you consult with a lawyer.

Can I be convicted on one person’s word?

Q: I went to store to purchase some items. Some stranger was standing next to me at store. Next day when I went to the same store that random stranger is blaming me for pick pocketing his mobile saying I was the only one standing next to him and when I left his mobile was missing. He doesn’t have any evidence nor any eyewitness and there’s no CCTV as well. Is this evidence enough for conviction? If not, what evidence will state require for conviction? Will I be entitled for benefit of doubt in this case? (Pittsburgh, PA)

A: If in fact, that is the ONLY evidence against you, and the alleged victim did not see you take the phone and can only say you were nearby, I think you have a good defense. The standard for a criminal conviction is that the state must prove you guilty beyond a reasonable doubt. The law does permit a person to be not only arrested, but convicted solely on the word of another person. However, in these situations, the person’s word must be extremely believable.