It is becoming more and more of a newsworthy topic to discuss why specific suspects are not being charged with crimes related to specific incidents. In the most recent example, a man who was stabbed is now demanding answers after the suspect charged with his stabbing was released.
According to reports, the man was out with his brothers when a group of other men approached him and began beating him. The victim identified one of the men who stabbed him but was later released. Now, he is demanding answers.
Police were able to confirm that a person of interest was interviewed at the scene, but no one was charged. The Cook County State’s Attorneys released a statement saying that the totality of the evidence was insufficient to pursue charges. They also said that Chicago P.D. agreed with this decision, which may or may not be true.
Why Was the Suspect Not Charged?
It is not entirely clear what happened at the scene. However, if you have a witness who is also a victim willing to testify against a defendant, the prosecution usually takes that case, puts the defendant in front of a jury, and lets them have their day in court. While prosecutors do keep score when it comes to wins and losses, they win mostly because they can stack the deck in their favor. There is hardly ever an instance when a prosecutor will take a case to trial without being fairly certain of the verdict. If they do, it is generally a high-profile murder trial, not a random battery.
What Would Usually Happen in a Case Like This?
It is hard to say because cases like this do not happen all that often. It may be a case where the victim was targeted by the men over some beef, or they just did not like the looks of him as he was walking through their neighborhood. Maybe they were just looking for a fight. In any event, it would be rare for the police to actually have the suspect in custody to question. Rarer still to have a witness willing to point out the assailant. In most cases, the witness’s testimony would be enough.
When Would the Victim’s Testimony Not be Enough?
If someone punches you in the face, that is usually a crime. But what if you consent to allow someone to punch you in the face? What if you give tacit consent to punching them in the face by invoking their anger or otherwise baiting them? Prosecutors often fail to successfully convict rapists when the rapist raises a consent defense. It can be very difficult to overcome a consent defense, because there is no way to “prove” that the defendant “never gave” consent. Instead, juries are asked to determine beyond a reasonable doubt that the victim withheld consent. Aggravated battery and other charges now face the same issue. Prosecutors will struggle to win cases in which a consent defense can be used to fight charges.
Talk to a Chicago Criminal Defense Attorney