Investigators from police departments recently cooperated in identifying two suspects in connection with a string of armed robberies in Northeast Ohio communities. The individuals are alleged to be brother and sister, and they now face charges for violent crimes.
People who are confronted with accusations of robbery, violence and other allegations in Cleveland must be fully aware of their rights to lodge a defense. This is true regardless of the charges. In fact, those who have been arrested or being sought for violent crimes should be exceedingly cognizant of the essential nature of planning a strong defense because of the harshness of the penalties in the event of a conviction. There can be a long prison sentence, significant fines and other punishments that can affect a person's life for a long time, if not forever.
The conviction of the so-called "Circleville femme fatale' has been overturned by the Fourth District Court of Appeals. A Pickaway County jury convicted her last year of attempting to hire a hit man to murder the mother of her husband's children. She was sentenced to seven years in prison at the Ohio Reformatory for Women in Marysville. She may be released as soon as this week.
A law meant to prevent online harassment and stalking may be struck down as overly broad, if a bipartisan group of political commentators has its way. The law was passed last year in response to a family's complaint that a neighbor had set up a website intentionally meant to harass, stalk and threaten them. They were told by police that nothing could be done.
The Ohio Court of Appeals has just ruled that Cleveland's 2015 ordinances meant to restrict gun violence are unconstitutional. The reason is that the Ohio Constitution, like that of the United States, holds that state laws are superior to local ones. Local laws may only augment the protections of state law and the state constitution, but local laws cannot be opposite to state laws.
It should not come as a surprise to anyone that young people make mistakes. They don't have the maturity to understand the long-term consequences of actions, and they are often quite willing to take risks and test boundaries. In many cases, these characteristics lead to little more than some embarrassing mistakes.
We know the drill. A crime occurs. It receives a great deal of publicity and media coverage. It often involves a suspect who had committed earlier crimes, had just been released from prison or was on probation or parole.
The argument that the criminal justice system is faulty can be viewed as un-American. However, the idea that justice should prevail is a very American value. Therefore, identifying sources of injustice is important in order to solidify the foundation of a strong country.
The use of DNA in criminal cases is well known. Police routinely look for blood or other organic evidence from crime scenes to be used to identify criminal suspects as well as victims. DNA is made up of chromosomes and is generally unique to every individual. This uniqueness allows individuals to be identified with a high degree of accuracy. It has also been used to exonerate many who were wrongly convicted.
DNA analysis has revolutionized some elements of criminal investigations. DNA evidence could provide support for truly scientific support for crime scene investigations, and provide a means of identifying criminal suspects that weren't "by gosh and by glory." In recent years, rigorous examinations of many so-called tests used by forensic labs have shown they, in fact, were base on little more than educated guesses and gut-feeling conclusions.