A man was indicted and charged with the crimes of sodomy in the first degree, robbery in the first degree, sexual abuse in the first degree and two counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree. The said crimes were committed but the man was not arrested until more than three years later.
The man was then tried for the crimes charged. A mistrial resulted because of a deadlocked jury which was reported to have said that its final vote was 10 to 2 for acquittal. The case consisted essentially of one-witness identification by the victim of the crime. A corporeal identification of the man was first made by the witness, more than three and a half years after the crime was committed, following the photo identification.
In preparing for a re-trial, the attorney of the man, who was newly retained after the first trial, requested the prosecution to produce certain evidence. The request was based upon the official police report prepared and signed by a detective. According to the report, the complainant struggled with her assailant and, in the course of the struggle the assailant cut his hand with his own knife.
The police report also discovered that a further search of the area revealed possible blood stains on the steps and wall leading to the roof door. Stains were small but a possible sample was removed and will be sent to the police laboratory for processing. The complainant’s pants also had a small blood type stain on them.
Based on the statements in the police report, the attorney of the man requested a copy of the police laboratory report pertaining to the blood scrapings and production of the blood-stained trousers for analysis. Some months thereafter, the district attorney’s office notified the man’s attorney that it could not locate either the blood samples, trousers or a laboratory analysis report.
The man’s party then moved to dismiss the indictment on the ground that the failure to preserve the evidence violated the man’s constitutional rights to due process, as articulated in a previous case.
Subsequently, a hearing on the motion was conducted by the court, at which the city of New York were directed to explain the failure to preserve the blood scrapings and the blood-stained pants, and the man was to produce expert testimony as to the value of the evidence if it had been preserved.
At the hearing, a doctor testified on behalf of the man. The city of New York then called the detective who prepared the police report and another two detectives.
As a result of the evidence presented at the hearing, the court made a finding of fact. The detective believed that the blood stains found on the steps, wall and complainant’s pants belonged to the perpetrator and was aware that it had forensic value for he knew that results of blood tests could be used to either identify or exclude possible suspects. However, he intentionally discarded the blood scrapings he collected after someone told him they were insufficient to send for analysis, although the person was not a serology expert. The officer also did not recall that he ever vouchered the complainant’s slacks, as he had intended. He had permitted her to wear them home instead of giving her substitute clothing, but he made no effort to retrieve them at a subsequent time. The two detectives locate the slacks after it was requested but failed to do so.
To be cont….
If one of your family members suffered sexual violence and you want to seek justice for what happened, you can ask legal guidance from the Queens County Sex Crime Lawyer. Nevertheless, Stephen Bilkis and Associates also recommends the expertise of their Queens County Criminal Attorney for sex crime related matters.