Articles Posted in Burden of Proof

On Tuesday, February 7, 2012, the San Diego City Attorney’s office declared that Los Angeles Laker player Kobe Bryant would not be charged with assault arising from an incident that occurred last August.

Alleged victim, Thomas Hagos, 20, asserted that Bryant assaulted him while both were attending church in the upscale neighborhood of Carmel Valley. California Penal Code §240 makes it unlawful for any person to make an unlawful attempt, couple with present ability, to commit violent injury to another.

Hagos claimed that Bryant had aggressively grabbed his arm accusing the 20 year old of having tried to take his picture. Hagos was taken to the hospital with a minor wrist sprain.

When a person has been charged with a criminal violation, the Prosecutor must demonstrate that the person is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, before they can be convicted. In a criminal case, each person has the right to a jury trial. The Jurors must then determine whether the Prosecutor has presented a case that allows them to believe that the defendant is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.

The legal definition of the standard of Beyond a Reasonable is met when no other logical explanation can be derived from the facts except that the defendant committed the crime, thereby overcoming the presumption that a person is innocent until proven guilty.

Anyone who is brought before the Criminal Justice System is presumed to be innocent and must be proven guilty. If it cannot be proven that they are guilty, they will be innocent and cannot be convicted of a crime. Guilt must be proven through the facts and evidence. The facts and evidence should be strong and in favor of the crime having been committed by the defendant with no other plausible explanation.