One of the benefits of having a criminal defense attorney is that I know and understand the criminal court process and procedure in Maine. I can look at the State’s evidence in the form of discovery, and based upon my ten plus years of experience, I would be able to advise you if the State’s evidence is insufficient to sustain a case against you at court. With criminal cases in Maine, the District Attorney needs to prove beyond a reasonable doubt to a jury or to the judge that you in fact committed the crime accused.
When I receive the discovery materials from the District Attorney, I will take a close look at the discovery to determine whether the evidence presented in fact meets all of the required elements of the crime charged. If there is an insufficiency in the State’s evidence, then I would point them out in preparation of a Motion to Dismiss. The purpose of a Motion to Dismiss requests that the Court dismiss the case against you in its entirety.
Motion to Dismiss before Trial
The point in the legal criminal process that a Motion to Dismiss is heard is before a trial, such as before a Bench Trial at the District Court. After a Motion to Dismiss has been filed by the criminal defense attorney, the Court will schedule a hearing on the Motion. At the Hearing on the Motion to Dismiss, arguments would be given by both the District Attorney and the defense lawyer. Then it is up to the judge whether or not the Motion to Dismiss is granted. If the Motion to Dismiss is granted, then the case would be dropped by the Court. If the Motion to Dismiss is not granted, then the case would progress to Trial.
What are the Bases for a Motion to Dismiss?
Grounds for requesting a motion to dismiss include, but are not limited to:
- Conduct that does Not Meet the Elements of a Crime – A Motion to Dismiss based on the accused’s actions that did not meet that statutory elements of the crime accused.
- Conduct that does not Offend the Victim in the way the Crime Requires– If the accused’s actions did not in fact offend that the victim in the way that the State is attempting to argue, this is appropriate as a basis for a Motion to Dismiss.
- Violation of the Statute of Limitations – A Motion to Dismiss based on a Violation of the Statute of Limitations would argue that too much time has passed between the occurrence of the alleged crime and the prosecution filing a criminal complaint against the accused.
How Maine Criminal Defense Attorney Chris Nielsen Can Help
In the end, understanding the criminal court procedures and how to defend a criminal case goes beyond just reading the Maine statutes. The expertise a seasoned criminal defense attorney offers is an understanding of the rules of court procedure, the rules of evidence, as well as the Maine Criminal Code and case law. Our initial consultation is free, and I will educate you starting at the first meeting how the trial will unfold sharing possible options for your case including if a motion to dismiss is a possibility. Please feel free to contact us today, so we can begin to discuss your case strategy.
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