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Another Not Guilty Verdict

On Count 1, Home Invasion – First Degree, we the jury find the defendant not guilty.
On Count 2, Felony Firearm, we the jury find the defendant not guilty. 
On Count 3, Felonious Assault, we the jury find the defendant not guilty.

These were the words read by the foreperson at Michigan defense attorney Chris Kessel’s trial.  Our client immediately burst into tears when the verdict had been completed.  Had he been convicted, our client would have been looking at a minimum of 2 years in prison on the felony firearm count and an additional 2 or 3 years on the other counts…so you can understand the tears.

The case centered around allegations made by an old friend of our client; that our client and his nephew broke into the complaining witness’s home, assaulted him with a pistol and threatened his life.  Our client’s entire defense rested on Chris’s ability to turn the “victim’s” words against him.  Thankfully Chris is a top defense attorney and was up to the task.  Among the points Chris was able to make were that: 1) even though he claimed to have been struck many times by a pistol in the head and face, the complaining witness had no injuries, 2) initially the complaining witness never mentioned having been struck with a pistol, but later changed his story repeatedly to increase the number of times he’d been struck, 3) during the 911 call, there was never any mention of being struck with a weapon or having any sort of death threats made, 4) the complaining witness explicitly said that our client said nothing after hitting him with the pistol…only to later change his story to say the client told him he would kill him if he called the police.  While these are only some of the inconsistencies Chris Kessel was able to show the jury, there was still tension in the air as the jury came out with their verdict.     

At Nessel and Kessel Law, we have decades of experience dealing with 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.  

If you or a family member has been changed with an assaultive, contact the defense lawyers at Nessel and Kessel Law today.

Client Found Not Guilty of CSC 1 (Under 13)

After Re-Trial Defendant Found Not Guilty.

After less than a day of deliberation, a jury returned a “not guilty” verdict for the client of criminal defense attorney, Chris Kessel.  The client was charged with one count of CSC – 1st under 13; meaning that the alleged victim was under the age of 13 at the time of the alleged assault.  It was alleged that the client had woken up his 11 year old niece in the middle of the night, took her into his bedroom, and raped her.  The was based almost exclusively upon the testimony of the complaining witness, who made the allegations.

The case had actually already been tried once, with the jury unable to reach a verdict.  At the end of the previous trial the jury was deadlocked at 11-1, for guilty.  After the prosecutor’s office decided to re-try the case, the family of the client reached out to Chris Kessel to ask him to represent the client.  The trial lasted three days, during which Chris Kessel carefully and meticulously took apart the complaining witness’s story; piece by piece.  The girl had told a number of differing versions of the event, each differing from the other.  Some of the differences were significant, while others were more minor.  However, after cross-examination, it was clear that the young girl was not being truthful.  In fact, when confronted with one of the version of the story, even she was forced to admit that what she had previously stated “didn’t make any sense.”

Even with the multiple holes in her story, the prosecution argued that because the client had previously been convicted of a CSC – 1 under 13, he was predisposed to this kind of activity.  Thankfully, Chris Kessel was able to tease out testimony from the complaining witness’s sister that both of them knew that the client had been convicted of this crime over 20 years ago…making him an easy target for the lie.

Cross-examining a 12 year old girl about an alleged rape is not something you learn over night.  It is something you learn with countless hours of study and experience.  Criminal Sexual Conduct cases are not cases that just any attorney can handle.  It takes an experienced criminal defense attorney, who knows what buttons to push and when to push them, to successfully defend against this type of charge.

If you or a family member has been charged with allegations of criminal sexual conduct, contact Nessel and Kessel Law today.

 

Drunk Driving Attorney Gets Charges Reduced

Drunk Driving Attorney Secures Reduced Charges

Drunk driving attorney, Chris Kessel, secures seriously reduced charges for his client.  The client was charged with Operating While Intoxicated out of the 48th District Court.  Eventually, Chris Kessel was able to convince the prosecutor to drop the charges down the a Reckless Driving and Open Intoxicants in a Motor Vehicle.

The client was stopped by the West Bloomfield Twp. Police for allegedly erratically operating his vehicle.  A further search of the vehicle revealed that the client had a weapon in the vehicle, as well as an open container of alcohol.  As a seasoned drunk driving attorney, Chris Kessel was able to secure the video from the police car which showed to alleged drunk driving.    The video revealed that the officer violated almost every protocol during the stop.  Chris Kessel was also able to cast a shadow of doubt over the results of the DataMaster test. Continue reading “Drunk Driving Attorney Gets Charges Reduced” »

Robbery vs. Larceny Defense Attorney

Nessel and Kessel Law recently retained a client who was charged with unarmed robbery.  After speaking with the client it became clear that he did not understand why he was being charged with robbery as opposed to simple larceny.  Even the most experienced criminal defense attorneys in Michigan find the law in this area is equal parts simple and frustrating. 

Let’s start with the definition of “larceny” first.  A larceny is the taking of something with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of the property.  Simply put, larceny is theft.  Larceny from a person is when you take something from someone, with the intent to permanently deprive that person of whatever has been taken.  The difference between robbery and larceny is the extra element of force.

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Detroit Defense Attorney Gets Home Invasion Dismissed

Home Invasion Attorney Gets 20 Year Felony Dismissed

This week, in the Wayne County Circuit Court, Detroit defense attorney Chris Kessel of Nessel & Kessel Law achieved another significant legal victory.  Our client was charged with Home Invasion – First Degree, Unlawfully Driving Away an Automobile (UDAA), and misdemeanor Domestic Violence.  The Home Invasion charge carries a maximum 20 year prison sentence, while the Unlawfully Driving Away an Automobile carries a maximum sentence of 5 years in prison.  Generally, when a defendant is sentenced on two or more crimes at the same time, the sentences will run “concurrent”; meaning that both sentences will be run at the same time.  However, because of the state of the law in Michigan, if a defendant is convicted of Home Invasion and another crime, the sentences will run consecutive; meaning a defendant will have to serve their sentence on the Home Invasion THEN serve their sentence on the other crime.

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