Police officers in the northeast Texas town of McKinney are continuing to hear from possible rape victims of a man accused of using Craiglist as a lure. According to a number of alleged victims, the man lured unsuspecting women to an apartment by posting ads on Craigslist which offered free or reduced or reduced rent in return for keeping his apartment clean while he travelled for work.
The man has already been charged in connection with two cases of sexual assault. Among the alleged victims is the man's ex-wife, who accused him of raping her on multiple occasions during their marriage.
The defendant reportedly has a domestic violence conviction from 1998, and was arrested in April for soliciting prostitution. Police are saying they expect a number of victims to still come forward.
Sexual assault is a serious charge, and anybody accused of the crime deserves the best possible defense. The number of exoneration cases coming through the courts is enough for anybody to recognize the importance of building a solid defense strategy.
Defense work isn't just about attempting getting the charges dismissed or having the defendant acquitted. In cases where guilt cannot be denied, defense is still important, since it is also critical that the charges are sufficiently supported by the evidence. Prosecutors need to be held to the full burden of proof, and defendants have a number of tools at their disposal to show inadequacies in the case against them.
Even once the defendant has already been convicted, defense can make a difference at sentencing. Special circumstances in the case can inspire a judge to impose a more lenient sentence. And defense can and does continue even after sentencing.
Whatever the case and its surrounding circumstances, criminal defense is critical, particularly when the charges are serious.
Source: CBS News, "Rape suspect used Craigslist ruse to lure victims, say Texas cops," Barry Leibowitz, July 25, 2012