Can I win the charges against me with no witness cooperating? 14 Answers as of April 01, 2013

I have been charged with 2 counts of domestic violence against my wife, 2 felonious assaults against my wife, kidnapping against her, attempted arson, aggravated burglary against her aunt, and 2 counts of intimidation of witness. Her aunt wrote a statement but my wife refused. Neither are cooperating and they offered me 20 years for a plea bargain. I refused.

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The Law Offices of John J. Carney Esq.
The Law Offices of John J. Carney Esq. | John J. Carney
You must get advice from your lawyer as we cannot tell you what to do without handling the case and talking to the prosecutor. They cannot win the trial without witnesses but the will try to force them.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 4/1/2013
Barton Barton & Plotkin
Barton Barton & Plotkin | Maurice Ross
It is possible that you could successfully defend these charges, but this depends on the direct and circumstantial evidence. Further, the testimony from the Aunt may be sufficient to convict you. Further, the District Attorney may be able to force your wife to testify (although the spousal privilege may protect you to some extent). You should retain criminal defense counsel to review all of the evidence and witness statements and, if appropriate, prepare your defense.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 4/1/2013
Epstein & Conroy
Epstein & Conroy | David B. Epstein
You can win, but it does not mean you WILL win. the prosecution could employ other means of evidence other than eye witness testimony. This could include observations by police or a medical professional, medical records, 9-1-1 calls (if it falls under an exception to hearsay), statements or admissions of a defendant (if they are corroborated by other evidence in the case), etc. You should consult your attorney on these matters before you commit to a plea or trial.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 3/31/2013
Michael Breczinski
Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
Well they can make both of them testify so I would not count on their noncooperation. You could be unpleasantly surprised.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 3/31/2013
Toivonen Law Office | John Toivonen
First, I hope that you have an attorney. If you do not have one, hire one right away. If convicted, you could go to prison for a very long time. You say that none of the victims are cooperating. Are you sure that they are not cooperating? Be careful, and do not attempt to stop them from cooperating or the prosecutor could add Witness Intimidation to the list of felonies that you are facing. Hire an attorney now.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 3/31/2013
    Timothy J. Thill P.C.
    Timothy J. Thill P.C. | Timothy J. Thill
    You must have a bad background, which might impact your credibility at a trial. It does not matter if the aunt and woman here do not want to testify. They will be subpoenaed to do so, and if they refuse, the judge will send them to jail for contempt of court. Eventually, they will testify. You see, they have no control over the case, only the prosecutor has the discretion to deal with the charge, as the state is the plaintiff in every criminal case. It sounds like the prosecutor already has made his position known to you, and the ball is not in your court.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 3/31/2013
    Arechigo & Stokka
    Arechigo & Stokka | John Arechigo
    The state could - and most likely will - subpoena the victims of your alleged offenses, which would legally require their appearance at the trial and allow the prosecutor an opportunity to ask them questions about what happened. These are extremely serious charges that, in my opinion, will not go away just because your wife and her aunt might not be cooperating right now. If you don't have one already, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney.
    Answer Applies to: Minnesota
    Replied: 3/31/2013
    Darrell B. Reynolds, P.C. | Darrell B. Reynolds
    If you do not have an attorney, you need one. If you have an attorney, that attorney knows more about your case than anyone on this site. Speak with your attorney about your options at this point.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 3/28/2013
    Lawrence Lewis
    Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
    Good job refusing. You need to see the jury trial. After you see the jury trial you can discuss it with your bunkmate for possibly more than 20 years, but you still need to see it. The prosecutor can win the charges with no cooperating witnesses. Your real question should be: How far is the prosecutor willing to go to make my witnesses testify against me? Are they able to lock them up? Yes, on a material witness warrant or contempt. Are they able to have DFACS take my children, because I am endangering the children (attempted arson)? Yes. So, the question is when the prosecutor begins to threaten your witnesses will they fold and testify against you.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 3/28/2013
    Law Offices of Darrell J York
    Law Offices of Darrell J York | Darrell York
    The prosecutor will subpoena your wife and aunt to court. Your wife can refuse to testify against you but not your aunt. If the complaining witnesses do not testify then the prosecutor cannot proceed because you have the right to confront and examine witnesses and if they are not there then your right to confrontation is violated. However, if the prosecutor can establish that the reason they are not there to testify is because you prevented them from testifying then their prior out of court statements may be used against you.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 3/28/2013
    Natty Shafer Law
    Natty Shafer Law | Nathaniel Shafer
    Yes, you can win. If neither one will testify against you, the prosecutor will have a lot less evidence.
    Answer Applies to: Utah
    Replied: 3/28/2013
    Connell-Savela
    Connell-Savela | Jason Savela
    Best asked of your lawyer because there are no doubt more facts each charge needs to be proven beyond a reasonable doubt as to each element using a non-hearsay witness. Sometimes cops are that witness, sometimes a person's statements admit/confess the charges.
    Answer Applies to: Colorado
    Replied: 3/28/2013
    Henry Lebensbaum | Henry Lebensbaum
    Insufficient data.
    Answer Applies to: Massachusetts
    Replied: 3/31/2013
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    Please realize that there are many forms of evidence including circumstantial which do not require witness cooperation or testimony. I hope that you have an extremely good criminal attorney as you certainly need one.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 3/28/2013
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