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Court Contends Insufficient Evidence for Child Endangerment Charge


This case is being heard in the Second Department, Appellate Division, of the Supreme Court in the state of New York. The respondents of the case are the people of the State of New York. A New York Drug Crime Lawyer said the respondent is represented by Charles J. Hynes, District Attorney of Brooklyn. The counsel for the respondent consists of Roseann B. MacKechine, Anthea H. Bruffee, and Trace E. Suslow. The appellant in the case is Victor Camacho. He is represented by Philip L. Weinstein from New York City. His Counsel consists of Bertand J. Kahn with Lauris Wren for the brief. The case is being heard before Thompson, J.P., Rosenblatt, Balletta, Santucci, and Florio, JJ.

Court Memorandum

The defendant of the case is appealing the previous judgment from the Kings County Supreme Court. The judge from the previous case was the Honorable Judge Goldstein. The judgment convicts the appellant of endangering the welfare of a child, upon the verdict of a jury, and an imposing sentence.

Court Discussion and Orders

When reviewing the case, this court finds that the people of the state of New York did not come up with enough evidence in the case to justify a conviction of the defendant for a crime of endangering a child’s welfare. A New York Drug Crime Lawyer said the defendant in the case is the “stepfather” of the twelve year old girl in question. He lived in the house with the girl, the girls mother, which is his wife, and the fifteen year old brother of the girl.

The strongest evidence in this particular case is the testimony of the twelve year old girl. She testified that on numerous occasions over a period of just over a year and a half the defendant kissed her on the neck. She states that she told him to stop and that sometimes he would stop. She says that she did not tell anyone because he told her that if she told anyone that he would go to jail and she would never see him again. A Nassau County Drug Possession Lawyer said the last time that the defendant kissed the girl, right before the defendant was arrested, the brother of the girl saw the defendant kissing the girl on her back while she was sleeping in bed. The brother states that both the girl and the defendant were fully clothed at the time. The brother called the police after witnessing this.

The defendant went before the grand jury and was indicted for 34 counts of sexual crimes against his step daughter. A Queens Drug Possession Lawyer said these included sexual abuse, sodomy and attempted rape as well as a count of endangering the welfare of a child.

The prosecutor of the case gave what he expected to be taken as proof during his opening statements. However, there was a complete failure to prove any of the 34 sexual crime counts and they were all dismissed accordingly.

We believe that this opening statement as made by the People influenced the jury of the case. We do not impute any bad faith towards the People for this opening. Under other circumstances this opening statement would call for a reversal and new trial.

After reviewing this case we order the initial judgment to be reversed and the indictment dismissed. The matter will be resent to the Kings County Supreme Court for the order to be entered.

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