Gary:

Because of the way the statute is worded, it is tricky. It's " traveling with the intent to meet a minor". From the State's perspective, he didn't see the guy get out of the house and present himself as an adult man until he arrived at that house. That being the case, traveling took place before the revelation that there is a grown man. The State's argument would be that prior to the grown man coming out of the house, the individual knew it would be an underage kid. That's the State's perspective. Now, from the defensive perspective, when you're picking the jury, you're going to have to talk very candidly and do your best discussing homosexuality. I understand that in some jurisdictions it's hard to pick a fair juror who won't convict someone because they are gay, or engaging in a sexually non-conservative lifestyle. You also have to get used to the fact that it's not only gay men, but heterosexual people going online for the purpose of hooking up for a sexual reason as well. You also have to bring up the fact that role play is not at all uncommon.

Donavon:

Here is my question: this seems to hinge on belief?

Gary:

That's true, absolutely.

Donavon:

I could say the following person who goes to church on Sunday on a consistent basis, and reads their bible; how do I prove they believe in God? They can even engage in actions, but how do you prove belief?

Gary:

That's an excellent point that you raise. To follow your analogy, if the State were prosecuting someone for believing in God, then their proof would be like this:

  • He goes to church every Sunday
  • He reads the bible
  • He knows the parables
  • He knows the verses

Even if that's true, that doesn't necessarily mean that he believes in God. It is circumstantial evidence that he believes in God. Similarly, when they try to put these cases together, the State really can't know what's going on in someone's mind, so they do the best they can to put together a situation. This is where much damning circumstantial evidence is constructed to imply intent. Depending on the investigation, they do better or worse jobs.

Donavon:

Is it illegal for me to go over and meet the older sister, if that's my intent is just to be with her?

Continue to Part 3 >>

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Case Results

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Nolle Prosequi-Case Dropped

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Nolle Prosequi - Case Dropped

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Nolle Prosequi - Case Dropped

Grand Theft Third Degree

Adjudicated Guilty; One day jail/one day time serve; Restitution fees; Court Cost

Petit Theft < 300

We negotiated an agreement that entailed the State dropping the charge after our client completed a Pre-Trial Diversion Program. The Charge was dropped via a Nolle Prosequi.

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Withhold of Adjudication; No points on license; Paid fine and clerk cost; 8 hour aggressive driver class; 90 days to satisfy fine and class

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No Information Notice - Charges Dropped

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Nolle Prosequi - Case Dropped

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Pled No Contest, 1 Year Probation, 10 day Car Impound, Community Service

Motion to Modify Probation

Motion Granted in 48 hours

Petit Theft

Adjudication Withheld, 4 Months probation, Costs/Fines, Impulse Control Class

Petit Theft of $100 or MORE (M1)

Nolle Prosequi

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Case Dropped

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Nolle Prosequi - Case Dropped

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Charges Dropped

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Motion to Terminate Probation Granted

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Dismissed

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Not Guilty

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Case Dropped

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Granted

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Charges dropped

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Charges dropped

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Reduced to reckless driving

Possession of Alcohol Under the Age of 21

Charges dropped

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Reduced to Reckless Driving

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Case Dismissed

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