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When you hear that someone has been arrested for Sexual Assault, the general reaction is one of relief and disgust: “Bravo to the police for catching the evil rapist,” is a usual thought in Denver, Arapahoe, and El Paso County. It isn't a common point of view to question whether or not the arrested person is innocent. Believe it or not, sometimes the police make mistakes when making arrests. For one Denver man who spent two months behind bars after being arrested in for Sexual Assault, this fact couldn't be more apparent.
DNA Error: Innocent Man Spends 2 Months in Jail
“Evidence” isn't always right: The man's DNA was incorrectly labeled. He had been falsely arrested and spent two months in jail as an innocent man.
According to the police, a Sexual Assault took place in Denver last summer. The police took DNA samples at the scene. One young man's DNA matched the DNA in the rape kit. He was arrested, and spent two months in the Denver County Jail. During this time, the police retested his DNA and found a mistake: While his DNA was evident at the scene, it wasn't a match for the rape kit – the first sample had been incorrectly labeled. The young man never denied being at the party where the rape took place, but firmly stood by his innocence. Until the DNA evidence proved otherwise, no one believed him.
Errors Happen: Don't Give Up Hope
Human error is a factor in criminal cases, but people tend to trust DNA evidence without thinking about whether or not it is accurate.
The police, detectives, and investigators make mistakes just like the rest of us. Unfortunately, judges, juries, and District Attorneys don't often question the evidence the police provide. This is because they have a working relationship with the police, and because law enforcement is held in awe by our society. DNA evidence is held in high regard – TV shows like CSI have helped to cement the idea that DNA evidence trumps everything. But, people don't often consider that human error is a huge factor as well.
We Believe You're Innocent Until Proven Guilty
Here at the O'Malley Law Office, we fight to prove your innocence.
Our country's criminal justice system was founded on the belief that a person charged with a crime in Adams, Douglas, and Jefferson County is innocent until proven guilty. In fact, a defendant in a criminal case doesn't have the burden of proof – they don't even have to defend themselves. Instead, the DA is responsible for gathering enough evidence to prove “beyond reasonable doubt” that the defendant committed the crime. Some people think the government must prove the accused's guilt “beyond a shadow of a doubt,” but that is just from movies. Unfortunately, our criminal justice system is changing – people are treated guilty before they've even gone to trial. The innocent young man who spent 2 months in jail understands that better than most. This is especially true with sex offense cases, where emotions run high and District Attorneys, judges, and juries are pressured by society to be “tough on crime.”
Why You Need an Aggressive Lawyer in the Courtroom
Because of the way sex offense cases are handle in Colorado, it is extremely important that you work with a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney who will aggressively fight to defend you in court. You need someone unconnected to your family and friends who will be able to offer an unbiased perspective. We know how the system works, and we know when evidence is lacking, incorrect, or the result of an error. Don't stand alone in court – work with a lawyer from the O'Malley Law Office who fights to win.