A St. Louis County, Missouri, man has been arrested and charged with sex offenses. Prosecutors charged the man with 10 counts of first-degree statutory sodomy and six counts of attempted statutory sodomy. Police allege that the man committed acts of sexual assault against a girl when she was 10 years old or younger. Bail for the 25-year-old man was set at $75,000.
News reports of the story mentioned that the man who has been accused is on probation for a misdemeanor theft that allegedly had been committed back in 2008. However, if this sex abuse case goes to trial, the judge will require the prosecution to prove each element of the alleged crimes beyond a reasonable doubt. The judge will exclude irrelevant evidence that does not go to proving the elements of the crime.
Every defendant is entitled to receive a fair trial. However, the man facing charges in this case may have an uphill battle ahead of him if he pleads not guilty to the charges. According to court documents, the man admitted to the police that he had committed the offenses.
If this is true, that the man admitted guilt to the police, then even a skilled criminal defense attorney with experience in defending people charged with sex crimes might have a difficult time defending him. However, the circumstances under which the man admitted his involvement could be challenged: What led up to the confession? What actions did the police take? Was the man apprised of his rights?
Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, "Berkeley police arrest man for 16 counts of statutory sodomy," Christine Byers, May 25, 2012