Criminal defense attorney scores another Not Guilty
A sigh of relief was heard in Frank Murphy as criminal defense attorney Dana Nessel earned another not guilty verdict for her client last week. The client was charged with felonious assault and felony firearm. The felony firearm count carried a mandatory 2 year prison term. The felonious assault charge carried a maximum of 4 years in prison, though it is likely that the client would have received probation. The case was based solely upon the testimony of two security guards who worked at a local venue in the city of Detroit. Not only did the verdict mean that a mandatory prison sentence was avoided, but it paved the way for possible civil litigation against the venue.
The case came about as a result of a confrontation in downtown Detroit in January of 2014. Dana Nessel’s client was driving his vehicle down Woodward Ave., when the vehicle was struck with snow from a snow blower that was being operated in front of the local venue. The operator of the snow blower actually struck the client’s vehicle again when he (the client) slowed down. Eventually, the client got out of the car the confront the man (the complaining witness) about his having blasted the client’s car with snow. Words were exchanged, followed by the appearance of another man who worked at the venue. A physical altercation nearly ensued, but the confrontation ended when both the client and the second man (the second complaining witness) pulled their firearms. After the client left the scene, he called the police. However, he was forced to call the police several times until he realized that no one from the Detroit Police Department would take any action. Unfortunately, the complaining witness also called the police, leading ultimately to the client’s arrest. Thankfully the client’s next call was to the Michigan criminal defense attorneys at Nessel and Kessel Law.
The case proceeded to trial, which meant that both complaining witnesses had to testify. Under intense cross examination by Dana Nessel, both complaining witnesses were shown to have clearly falsified some of the details of their claims. Dana Nessel made the witnesses, each of whom was approximately 6’2′ and 250lbs, look foolish when they claimed they were fearful of her client (who was approximately 5’8″ and 170lbs). Further, Dana Nessel brought out several key differences between the stories of the two witnesses. Finally, Ms. Nessel called several witnesses of her own, including a veteran instructor in the subject of concealed pistol licensing. That witness testified that the actions of the client were exactly what he teaches his students. Finally, the client himself testified. He testified that while he was indeed angry at the way his car was blasted with snow, that he did not pull his weapon until he was threatened by the complaining witnesses.
The verdict was met with pure joy by the client, who had lost his job as a result of the charges, was finally able to return to his normal life.
At Nessel and Kessel Law, we have decades of experience dealing with all kinds of weapons and assault charges. Because we are top criminal defense attorneys, when a client retains Nessel and Kessel Law we immediately begin to develop a comprehensive strategy for success. Sometimes success means convincing the prosecutor to dismiss the charges completely, or have them greatly reduced. Other times it means a motion to suppress evidence to have the case dismissed by a judge, or fully preparing for trial and securing a not guilty verdict.
Assault charges are often fueled by emotional and hostile witnesses. More often than not, a verdict will hang solely on the testimony of a complaining witness. The means that you need an attorney who is skilled in the art of cross examination, who can force a witness to admit things that may contradict earlier statements, police reports, hospital records, and other witnesses. Other times a case will turn on what the defendant’s intent was during the alleged assault. It can often times be difficult if not impossible to prove what someone’s intent was. At Nessel and Kessel Law, we have the experience needed to persuade a prosecutor, judge, or jury that you did not have the necessary intent to convict.