Justice is often overlooked in Sexual Assault cases in Denver, Adams, and Jefferson County. This is because the police and District Attorney fight only for the alleged victim, instead of searching for the truth and proving their case beyond a reasonable doubt. It is extremely rare for DAs or judges to look for evidence which could prove the victim is lying about the alleged assault. This is why I was surprised about a recent case in New Jersey, where a judge ordered a teen victim in a Sexual Assault case to provide access to her Facebook page in order to examine postings about the alleged rape. This judge is looking for evidence in the case – evidence which may not shed a favorable light on the young “victim.” This is highly unusual. We hope Colorado will learn and that using social media in Sexual Assault cases will grow more and more common.
The Problem with Sexual Assault Cases
The problem with Sexual Assault cases in Adams, Douglas, and El Paso County, is the inherent lack of evidence. Sexual Assaults don’t take place in plain sight. Usually, there are only two sides to the story: The alleged victim’s testimony, and the defendant’s testimony. As leading criminal defense lawyers in the Denver area, our goal in court is to gather evidence which proves the alleged victim is lying, or not telling the whole story. In many cases, we scour the alleged victim’s social media accounts, looking for evidence which contradicts their story. We often find what we’re looking for, and work hard to use the evidence in court.
We often find favorable evidence on social media accounts.
The Problem with Colorado Courts
Once we have found evidence the alleged victim is lying (often we find the motive behind the accusations), the next step is for us to get permission to use the evidence in court. There are many rules of evidence in Colorado courts, and it can difficult to get the judge to allow the evidence in the courtroom. This is why you need an expert criminal lawyer fighting on your behalf who has a thorough understanding of the law and has experience working with the judges in Colorado courtrooms.
Why We Should Use Social Media in Sexual Assault Cases
Let’s look at the New Jersey case to see why we should use social media in Sexual Assault cases. The defense attorney in the case wants the judge to review the alleged victim’s Facebook page because he believes there may be hints that the sexual encounter was consensual (we have defended many clients who thought they were having consensual sex until later, when they were contacted by the police regarding rape charges). The prosecutor in the case was upset about the judge reviewing the Facebook page, calling it an “invasion of privacy.” We don’t agree at all. A man’s future is at stake: As law abiding citizens, we need to demand the DA prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the assault occurred. This includes researching all possible explanations. A judge may be perusing the young woman’s private Facebook page, but when a man’s future is on the line, “privacy” is overshadowed by the burden to prove beyond a reasonable doubt in court.