Can someone be charged with armed robbery with no witness or evidence to prove a crime was committed? 15 Answers as of November 25, 2012

My brother is currently incarcerated for 2 counts of arm robbery and 1 count of use of firearm. When he first got arrested he told them he didn't have nothing to do with crime than after a few day of interrogation he confessed to the crime not knowing he was taped. The witness dropped the charges and they have no evidence but his gun, which was not on him at time of arrest and is registered. Public defender wants him to plea and testify against other person and get 8 years.

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Lawrence Lewis
Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
Your brother has already been charged with armed robbery. IF he claims he did nothing, INSIST on a JURY TRIAL. Make sure you take off from school or work and watch the entire hearing. So, you don't have to ask the public defender what happened IF your brother gest 20 years in prison.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 11/25/2012
Michael Breczinski
Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
I would need to see the police reports before I could give an opinion on the matter.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 11/9/2012
Austin Legal Services, PLC
Austin Legal Services, PLC | Jared Austin
Even the most inept prosecutor would never charge someone with a crime with no evidence and no witnesses. There must be something or else they wouldn't have brought charges. There has to be a victim, i.e. witness, in order for armed robbery to have occurred. The statements by the witnesses or victims, whether they are pressing charges or not is evidence and whether they want to appear in court and testify or not, they can be compelled to do so. Also, if he confessed, that is evidence as well. If the gun that was used can be traced back to him, that is evidence as well. Armed Robbery is a very serious offense and he needs an experienced criminal lawyer to represent him.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 11/8/2012
Natty Shafer Law
Natty Shafer Law | Nathaniel Shafer
Yes, your brother can be charged. His confession is enough evidence to convict him. He should probably listen to his public defender.
Answer Applies to: Utah
Replied: 11/8/2012
Mace J. Yampolsky, LTD
Mace J. Yampolsky, LTD | Mace Yampolsky
If he confessed that is evidence.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 11/6/2012
    The Law Offices of John J. Carney Esq.
    The Law Offices of John J. Carney Esq. | John J. Carney
    Most criminals are not very good decision makers. The police will manipulate them into confessing and that takes all the bargaining power away from their attorney. The prosecutor can then demand that you plead to the charge and you can only try to get less than the maximum. The victim does not have the power or the right to "drop the charges" and he must have reported the crime and identified the perpetrator so the prosecutor did have plenty of evidence. He had a witness to the crime and possibly the gun that was used. Your brother committed a very serious crime and if he has a prior felony the sentence will probably be 8 years or more. He could get 15 years for armed robbery and prosecutors do not reduce armed robberies or gun charges. Judges will only give minors a break on such violent crimes, and even minors will get long sentences if they have a record or use a gun. If he had remained silent he might have gotten a better deal or even beat the charge, but he confessed and that is bad for him but good for society as people who commit such violent crimes are very dangerous and the public must be protected. Hopefully he will change his ways and become a productive member of society.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 11/6/2012
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    All they need is the confession and the gun. The victim can't "drop" charges. That authority lies with the prosecutor's office.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 11/6/2012
    Hamblin Law Office | Sally Hamblin
    Police tape conversions our have others listen in. Never confess. Instead exercise right to talk to an attorney. He confessed to a crime. There are legal maneuvers to argue against that confession. In this situation, it appears there is a gun, there is a confession, and apparently another defendant. Yes, a crime could be considered to occur.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 11/6/2012
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    The Law Office of Harry E. Hudson, Jr. | Harry E. Hudson, Jr.
    Well, there is not a lack of evidence. there is undoubtedly some evidence that a person was in fact robbed. The confession provides the identity. A few days of interrogation raises qustions of coercion and if found true could invalidate the confession. Above is based solely on your posted staement of facts. I obviously have no idea of the truth of your assertions nor what the prosecutions evidence actually might be or what the PD is relying on for his recommendation.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/6/2012
    Timothy J. Thill P.C.
    Timothy J. Thill P.C. | Timothy J. Thill
    The witness cannot drop criminal charges. The State automatically picks up the case, and the only one with discretion to drop charges is the prosecutor. Witnesses will be subpoenaed into court, and forced to testify, if reluctant to do so. Also, it sounds like he knew what was going down, and might be implicated as an accomplice. He does not have to be physically holding the gun. Counsel for the defendant knows what to do, trust his advice.
    Answer Applies to: Illinois
    Replied: 11/6/2012
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly | Brendan M. Kelly
    You may want to hire a lawyer to help him prove he did not do it. Hard to tell from the facts you list, but seems not they don't have much of a case.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 11/6/2012
    R. Jason de Groot, P.A
    R. Jason de Groot, P.A | R. Jason de Groot
    If there was no evidence whatsoever, how can they charge him? It sounds to me like he needs an aggressive attorney on his side, or he will be going to prison.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 11/6/2012
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC
    Musilli Brennan Associates PLLC | John F Brennan
    He need to hire an attorney but his admission is going to be a problem. He needs a retained criminal attorney, 8 years is a very long time in a prison.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 11/6/2012
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh
    Law Office of Jeff Yeh | Jeff Yeh
    The confession is all they need. What other evidene do they need?
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 11/6/2012
    Rothstein Law PLLC
    Rothstein Law PLLC | Eric Rothstein
    In NY State court a conviction cannot be based on a confession alone. The DA need some evidence to corroborate that a crime took place. If the DA subpoenas the victim and forces him to testify he was robbed that would be enough.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 11/6/2012
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