Victories: Other Criminal Cases

Unlawful Possession of a Firearm — Man Did Not Know Gun Was in his Car

RESULT  |  Not Guilty at Trial

A man was convicted of manslaughter and was ordered by the Court not to be in possession of a firearm. Years later, he was stopped by the police while driving in his car and a gun was found hidden under a seat. As a result, he was charged with being in unlawful possession of a firearm. His defense was that shortly before the stop he and his girlfriend had switched cars and that she had left her gun in his car without his knowledge. The man was found not guilty after trial.

Delivery of Cocaine to Informant

RESULT  |  Dismissed

A young man was charged with selling drugs to an informant working with the police. After several motions to get the police department to provide information about the informant and unsuccessful attempts to interview the uncooperative lead detective in the case, the Court granted the defense motion to dismiss.

Negligent Driving — Speeding is Not Enough

RESULT  |  Not Guilty at Trial

A woman was charged with negligent driving after speeding and driving over the lane marker. The prosecution argued that alcohol had caused the driver to drive in a negligent manner. Cross-examination of the police officer revealed that the road the woman was stopped on was a “speed trap” that had a very low speed limit for a seven-lane road. The defense called witnesses who established that the driver was receiving a shocking piece of news from a passenger just as the “bad driving” occurred. The jury concluded that the driver was momentarily distracted but not driving negligently and found the woman not guilty.

Assault and Resisting Arrest at a Sporting Event

RESULT  |  Dismissed

A woman, her partner and their adopted son traveled to Seattle for a sporting event. At the event, the woman found herself in a confrontation with a male spectator who summoned security. As the woman was being dragged away from the event by police and security, she questioned their handling of the incident. Subsequently, the woman was charged with assaulting an officer and resisting arrest. The defense conducted investigation and presented a witness who indicated no crime had been committed. In addition, the defense presented information to the prosecutor about this woman, who was a pillar of her community and who was in the process of adopting a second child. The prosecution agreed to dismiss the case.

Assault and Obstructing in a State Park

RESULT  |  Dismissed

A woman and her son were confronted by a state park ranger after they took their dog off his leash so the dog could swim. The ranger scared the woman in his confrontation with her by asking for unusual information and by telling her she had to follow him down a secluded path at the park. When the woman refused to follow the ranger out of fear, he accused her of assaulting him and obstructing. The defense located witnesses to the incident as well as a witness who had another scary experience with the park ranger and presented this evidence to the prosecution who agreed to dismiss the case.

Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor

RESULT  |  Dismissed

A man came to the United States to join his family after years of waiting to be granted entry as a permanent legal resident. He did not speak or read English, but was working in his brother’s store cleaning and doing odd jobs. The man had not yet received training on how to avoid the sale of alcohol to minors because he was not yet proficient enough in the English language. The man was temporarily left in charge of the cash register at the store while his brother stepped out with the understanding that he was not to sell alcohol or tobacco. Unbeknownst to the man, his brother had reorganized the store just days before and had moved the alcoholic beverages to a cooler that previously only contained juice. An underage woman working with the Liquor Control Board took a can of beer out of the cooler that had previously only contained juice and approached the cash register. The man did not recognize the can as a beer can and sold it to the woman without checking her identification. He was charged with Furnishing Alcohol to a Minor. The state has a policy of not dismissing such cases because there is no requirement that the person intend to sell alcohol — if a person sells alcohol to a minor they are guilty. However, the defense was able to persuade the prosecutor that this situation was different and that, as a matter of fairness, the case should be dismissed.