Can my friend be charged for a battery caught on tape? 7 Answers as of June 02, 2011

My friend was caught on video beating a guy up. Victim isn't pursuing charges. Can the DA still pursue charges? My friend was asked to come down and sign off on the police report. Is it just a trick to get him down there and arrest?

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Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg
Law Office of Eric Sterkenburg | Eric Sterkenburg
Your friend should take a lawyer with him when he goes to the station. The DA can file charges without the alleged victim.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/2/2011
The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
Victims are not who press charges or prosecute cases. DAs do that. Friend is under no obligation, based on your post, to do anything with the cops. He/She should not see a cop re this case without an attorney present.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/2/2011
Law Office of Maureen Furlong Baldwin
Law Office of Maureen Furlong Baldwin | Maureen Furlong Baldwin
One should never just go to the police Department and "sign off" on anything! If the other party chooses not to come to court, and the DA does not subpena him, you cannot be convicted on a video alone. You have the right to confront witnesses, except in certain business records situations this is not one of them!
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/1/2011
Law Office of Andrew Roberts
Law Office of Andrew Roberts | Andrew Stephen Roberts
Yes & Yes- Your friend needs an attorney right away. He should not say anything to anyone but his attorney. He should not go to the police station as he most likely will be arrested. Any questions please call.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/1/2011
Nelson & Lawless
Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
Tape or not, they can charge him, as long a the victim files a complaint. A confession from the perp would certainly encourage that. The only advice to him now is to exercise the 5th Amendment right to not talk to anyone except an attorney about the case. That includes on this or any other web site or public forum. Most police and prosecutors will happily tell you that 95% of people convict themselves by trying to be 'helpful and cooperative', either during initial contact, questioning, interview or interrogation. If he is serious about hiring counsel to help in this, feel free to contact me.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 6/1/2011
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    First, the victim's action has nothing to do with whether the DA will press charges. Chances are, charges will be filed, since a report has already been written and there is a video. Asking your friend to go to the police station isn't a trick, but once your friend is there he will face a number of tricks. Remember to tell your friend to remain silent at all times, and to request an attorney be present before any kind of questioning. The cops are masters at making you think that talking will somehow help you, that cooperating somehow means you will not be arrested.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 6/1/2011
    Law Offices of Phil Hache
    Law Offices of Phil Hache | Phil Hache
    It is possible to get charged with battery even if there is no victim testifying against him, although it helps that there is no testifying victim. I would recommend that your friend consult with and hire a criminal defense attorney before going down to a police department to sign any papers. Have your friend contact me if he or she wants to discuss the case in further detail.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 6/1/2011
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