A 19-year-old Maryland man who was accused of accosting a sleeping woman
at a summer concert has been cleared of the most serious charges connected
to that incident. The man was tried on two counts: public intoxication
and assault and battery. He was accused of sexually assaulting the alleged
victim. However, courtroom proceedings cleared the defendant of the
sex crimes, though he was found guilty on the public intoxication charge. The defendant
had initially been charged with aggravated sexual battery, though that
sexual assault charge was dropped before the trial began.
The alleged victim in the case did not testify in the criminal trial. That
woman, age 49, had accused the defendant of groping her while she was
sleeping at a concert put on by the Zac Brown Band at the Jiffy Lube Live
music venue. Instead of the victim testifying in the sex crimes case,
three witnesses came forward to support the defendant. All of those witnesses
said they saw the man simply lie down next to the woman; they did not
observe any untoward behavior.
The man’s attorney was satisfied that his client was exonerated,
saying that not only did the man never sexually assault anyone —
he never laid his hands on the woman at all. The attorney also explained
the unusual nature of the case, saying that it is strange for the alleged
victim to decline to testify at such a criminal proceeding.
This case is an excellent example of a fair legal proceeding that ended
well for the defendant. An arrest and arraignment for sex crimes does
not mean that the defendant will be found guilty. It is possible to build
an effective defense against such allegations.
Source: The Washington Post, “Accused teen is found not guilty of assault at Jiffy Lube Live” Julie Zauzmer, Aug. 14, 2014