State attorneys office re-files charges against mother and son
Posted on August 09, 2010 3:00 AM EST
Although uncommon, the state attorney's office on occasion will re-file charges in criminal court on cases that have been previously "no actioned" or "nolle prossed". A no action occurs after an arrest has been made, but the prosecutor decides that there is not enough evidence to proceed with the case and the case is never filed. A no action is every Miami criminal lawyer
hope for their clients as the charges are dropped quickly and expeditiously. After a case has been no actioned it is eligible for a sealing or expungement
. The lack of evidence to support a case can result from victims and witnesses failing to appear at their pre-file conferences, or the police had probable cause to make an arrest, but after reviewing the evidence the screening prosecutor does not believe the case can be proven to a jury beyond a reasonable doubt. Another reason that a case can be no actioned is because the police conducted an illegal search and seizure, thus making the evidence recovered inadmissible in court.
A nolle pros occurs after charges have been filed, but the prosecutor for various reasons cannot proceed in the case and dismisses the charge levied against a defendant. Most nolle prosses occur as a result of victims and/or witnesses failing to appear or being unavailable for trial. Often times, prosecutors will nolle pros a case because the discovery process driven by the criminal lawyer leads the State to believe they cannot prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt to a jury. A nolle pros can occur at any stage of a criminal court case, even after a jury has been selected in the case. While a nolle pros is not as good as a no action, this result will also allow for a case to be sealed or expunged.
It is important to remember that even if a case results in a nolle pros or a no action, the prosecutor's office handling the matter can and will re-file charges as long as certain things have not occurred. First off, the state cannot re-file charges if the statute of limitations has run or the speedy trial time has expired. Also, to re-file a case, the defendant must be properly served with notice to be in court. Re-files mostly occur in driving under the influence or DUI cases
. Many times, police officers will fail to appear for trial, but the state will try to reserve the defendant in the hopes that the officers will appear for trial at a later date. On other occasions, victims or witnesses fail to appear for the pre-trial conferences, but will later appear to speak with prosecutors once they realize the chargers have been dropped. The decision to re-file charges is within the sole discretion of the prosecutor.
In a recent case, a mother and son were arrested on charges of resisting a police officer without violence
. This type of charge is usually prosecuted in county court, unless the defendant was also charged with a felony offense. Prosecutors dropped the charges against Anna Ramirez and her son Hernando Yunis. The criminal defense lawyer representing the defendants convinced a prosecutor to nolle pros the charges. The police officer later complained which caused the State to re-file the charges. The State claimed that the case was nolle prossed in error, but it was probably re-filed at the request of the police officer. Unfortunately, prosecutors succumb to the pressure of a victim's demand rather that explaining to them that the case should not proceed to trial.
Charges Re-filed in Florida Stun-Gun Case
, UPI.com, August 9, 2010.